The much-anticipated box office release a Furious 7 was not so fast. It’s nearly a year and a half overdue release date may have been a contributing factor for the movie being on the fast track to becoming this year’s top grossing film. Furious 7 is the latest movie in the Fast and Furious franchise whose movies are a cut above the rest, they keep getting better with each new release.
In November 2013 Universal Pictures along with the producer, director and the cast of Furious 7 shut down its production ultimately postponing the final release of the movie until April of this year. The decision came quickly following the death of Paul Walker, whom ironically and tragically died in a car accident. Walker was cast as Brian in the franchise’s first movie as the undercover cop/federal agent who ends up becoming a wanted criminal. He continued to play this role in subsequent movies that follows, until his death. The decision was made out of respect for the actor’s family as well as a necessity for the future of the film.
Deciding to completely write the character of Brian out of the movie, could have proven to be disastrous for the franchise. Fortunately, Universal Pictures was able to use previously filmed scenes, along with body doubles and computer generated images to finish up the remaining scenes. His brothers, Caleb and Cody were able to be a part of the filming by acting as his body double in some of the scenes.
While the arrival of Furious 7 may not have been so fast, its climbing box office numbers continued to prove it was worth the wait. Keeping with what the audience knows, the film is packed full of high-paced, superior quality stunts, promising to give the audience the adrenaline rush that they seek. According to John Oldfield, of At the Movies, “Furious 7, is the best of the bunch” while other critics have gone as far as whispering that the stunt scenes are Oscar worthy.
Stunt coordinator, Joe Kramer, takes his job seriously both in quality and safety. When addressing the amount of stunts and the amount of takes needed to meet their superior quality Joe stated, “so you are not cheating the audience, that is one thing we do not do.” This could not be more evident than in the fast pace high intensity stunts that the film producers. Stunts range anywhere from jumping off of moving cars on two other cars. Cars flying out of the back of airplanes and landing in a race on the ground. Fast and Furious fans all over the world expected nothing less than and received much more than was expected in this film.
The writers continue to execute the plot of the film through thoughtful and purposeful direction by capturing the mood and mannerisms of previous movies. Magically pulling the audience with their keen ability to portray and capture the essence of true street racers is just as important as the stunts. This is seen as the characters have a sense of the brotherhood and loyalty, each feeling that family-like bond, This is not more evident in how they were able to seamlessly change the direction of the film after Walker’s death. Approaching the issue with respect, in a way that allowed for all to grieve and honor his life and memory. In a statement Director James Wan stated, “It is the characters you keep coming back for.” This is a true testament to the franchise’s success.
With a record-breaking weekend Furious 7 proved that sometimes not going so fast is not a bad deal. The latest release of this movie has soared, pushing it into an elite status. Anticipation surrounding this movie will now be on which awards it will receive.
By Cher Bergeron
Photo by: Teymur Madjderey – Flickr License