'Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw' Review: Clichéd plot with engaging action sequences

A Potpourri of Vestiges Review

By Murtaza Ali Khan

Having already perpetuated the idea of film sequels and prequels, Hollywood is now fast embracing spinoffs as a means to further expand the popular film franchises. The latest in the series is Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw. As the name suggests it revolves around the characters Luke Hobbs (essayed by Dwayne Johnson) and Deckard Shaw (essayed by Jason Statham) from the main The Fast and the Furious franchise. Directed by David Leitch, Hobbs & Shaw also stars Idris Elba, Vanessa Kirby, Eiza González, Ryan Reynolds, and Helen Mirren.
The plot of Hobbs & Shaw is rather clichéd. Shaw and Hobbs who don’t like each other much must learn to coexist in other to thwart a major global threat. A rogue MI6 operative named Brixton Lore working for an evil corporation called Etheon, which plans to save mankind by killing off large sections of human population, is trying to possess a deadly virus. The operative is literally an unstoppable killing machine. Lore who had miraculously survived despite being shot in the head by Shaw years ago is now endowed with superhuman capabilities that are powered by Etheon’s cyber-genetic physical technology. Shaw and Hobbs are humanity’s last hope along with Shaw’s sister Hattie, an MI6 field agent in possession of the virus. But what complicates the matter is that Hattie becomes the live carrier of the deadly virus after she is forced to inject it in her bloodstream in order to keep it away from Lore’s hands. Hobbs and Shaw must find a way to safely extract the virus from her body before Lore and his associates close in on them.

Now, the virus angle is bound to remind a lot of viewers of Mission: Impossible 2. But the M: Iinfluence doesn’t just end there. A high octane chase sequence featuring bikes and cars on the roads of London and the climactic showdown set in Samoa involving a helicopter strongly hark back to Mission: Impossible – Fallout, which coincidentally also starred Kirby. The action sequences at large are brilliantly choreographed and the dialogues are both sharp and funny. Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham undeniably bring the next level coolness to the franchise with their non-stop banter laced with macho one-liners. Idris Elba, to his credit, proves to be a most worthy nemesis as Lore. Vanessa Kirby is a sight to behold in an absolutely kick-ass avatar. Her fight scene with Johnson early in the film is both riveting and funny. It’s a classic case of speed and agility versus brute force. Hobbs & Shaw is all about chaos and carnage and so if you enjoy adrenaline-pumping action films then it will certainly not disappoint you.
Rating: 6/10
A version of this review was first published in The Sunday Guardian.
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