When the first “Fast and Furious” film released in 2001, few, if any, would’ve thought the franchise would still be going. Crazier yet, no one thought the franchise would be releasing spin-off films, but here we are in 2019 with “Hobbs and Shaw.”
Fans of the franchise will be very familiar with the titular characters of Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham). Hobbs, a DSS agent and father, and Shaw, a bachelor and rogue military operative, couldn’t be more different.
Their rivalry stems from previous films, and it’s no secret the two are more adversaries than friends. For this reason, Hobbs is more than content living in sunny Miami, while Shaw claims his stakes in rainy and dreary London.
As fate would have it, their paths inevitably cross again when a virus is contracted by an MI6 agent named Hattie (Vanessa Kirby), who just so happens to be the estranged sister of Shaw. In the wrong hands, the virus could spell genocide for the masses. To prevent said disaster, Hobbs and Shaw are called in.
To save the world, the two reluctantly agree to (somewhat) get along and work together, as they have a bigger enemy than each other. Brixton Lore (Idris Alba), a former MI6 agent himself, is more machine than man these days, and his combat skills are so elite that he even labels himself as the “black Superman.”
Lore will stop at nothing until he gets his hands on the virus to cause a catastrophe of epic proportions. To stop the super soldier Lore, Hobbs and Shaw, as well as Hattie, will need to put their differences aside before Lore gets his hands on the virus that would bring an end to civilization as we know it.
With a plot that is tailor-made for the action/spy blockbuster, it’d be easy for “Hobbs and Shaw” to run out of gas about midway through the film. What’s amazing, though, is how the film keeps your attention despite its ordinary plot.
In fact, at its heart, “Hobbs and Shaw” is more of a comedy than an action flick. This is evident by the constant back-and-forth berating and jabbing the two characters hilariously engage in throughout the entirety of the film.
Not to mention, there are more than a few surprise cameos by A-list actors that appear out of nowhere as the film progresses. To the film’s credit, these were genuine surprises that were kept heavily under wraps in this digital age where nothing is kept secret.
By all accounts, “Hobbs and Shaw” isn’t anything you haven’t seen before. There’s fast cars, ridiculous action sequences and heavy artillery. However, it is the chemistry between Johnson and Statham that keeps the film in cruise control.
Between every wisecracking remark, there’s a sense of just how much joy and fun is happening between takes. “Hobbs and Shaw” only works if its title characters go all-in, and fortunately, Johnson and Statham welcome every aspect of this ridiculous film and look like they’re having a ball doing so.
This won’t be the best film you see all year, but as far as entertainment goes, it closes out the summer blockbusters with a fast and furious punch.