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Fast & Furious: Shifting into Seventh

I was still studying literature and deciding what I wanted to do with my creative-driven life when The Fast and the Furious was released in 2001. Already enamoured with the automotive world, the first instalment in the F&F movie franchise only depended my love affair, and helped push me in the direction I took later on in University to pursue a degree in Journalism. 

Of course, I can’t credit these movies with all my success, but they had a great deal to do with it. What I do credit them with is bringing sport compact performance tuning to the limelight, and opening doors on what might have previously been seen as an underground endeavour. 

Over the past 14 years seven Fast & Furious films have surfaced (check out V12 to hear the cast talk about it); some good, some utterly terrible, but all gave us what we wanted most: sex-on-wheels cars, angry exhaust notes, drag racing, drifting, and car girls. 

The world of automobiles is a culture unto itself. It is filled with like-minded people who are passionate about their vehicles, about driving, and about themselves as individuals. Car modifications are as much about personal flare as they are about performance, and the F&F series has proven that over the years. I had the esteemed pleasure of meeting Suki’s bright pink Honda S2000 at the Peterson Museum in California, and even in real life I just couldn’t bring myself to like it. I was impressed nonetheless. 

Just as the series as progressed and grown, so too have the vehicles featured in the films. While muscle cars are always prevalent, O’Conner seems to gravitate around the JDM and we can thank him for the Skylines, Evos and Subarus. Apparently, 124 different cars were shown in the sixth instalment, so here’s hoping there are just as many (or more) in the new one. 

Furious 7 is upon us and opens today in theatres around the world. Like most fans, I feel like this is a bittersweet event. The tragic passing of actor Paul Walker taints the otherwise exciting nature of this movie’s release. As one of the main actors and a staple in the series, Walker died before filming was done and so his two brothers stepped in as body doubles and CGI took care of the rest. Knowing certain scenes don’t actually feature him is a bit heart-wrenching, especially for someone like myself who’s “grown up” watching these films.

All that sad stuff aside (because there really is so much more to look forward to in this installment), Furious 7 marks the return of Dom, Mia, Letty, and Roman -- plus a whole host of incredible vehicles including a Lykan HyperSport, and the return of Dom’s knee-weakening ‘70s Dodge Charger R/T. 

The F&F movie series now elevates to the ranks of Rocky, National Lampoon, X-Men, and Alien. Of course, not all of the seven movies have been amazing, but my hope is that Furious 7 will go down as one of the greatest (Fast & Furious, 2 Fast 2 Furious, and Tokyo Drift are my overall faves). 

Obviously, a suspension in reality is needed when watching any F&F movie (that was made abundantly clear in Furious 6, which featured the longest runway in the world), but that’s OK. Sometimes it’s nice to kick back, listen to the engine rumble, and just enjoy the ride.