Donald Clarke

Whingeing about cinema and real life since 2009

Is Fast & Furious V the best fifth episode ever?

Probably not. After all, if you include the James Bond series then On Her Majesty’s Secret Service — for many perverse connoisseurs the finest of the bunch, despite the tepid lead — ┬ásurely takes the title. It is, however, interesting …

Sun, May 1, 2011, 22:58

   

Probably not. After all, if you include the James Bond series then On Her Majesty’s Secret Service — for many perverse connoisseurs the finest of the bunch, despite the tepid lead — ┬ásurely takes the title. It is, however, interesting to note that Fast & Furious V, despite being the fifth episode in a generally indifferently recieved series, has received consistently good notices and taken serious coin throughout the globe. If you haven’t seen it then you should. The movie is a little long, but the film-makers have had the good sense to bring back all the best characters — those still above ground at least — and ditched boring street races for out-and-out, smash-and-bang car chases. If ever there were an example of a low-brow film hitting all required buttons it is Fast Five (as it’s not called here). Moreover, James Bond is a different class of being. Based on a standalone novel, continuing virtually no threads from earlier episodes, OHMSS barely stands as a sequel at all.

Anyway, back to the opening question (filler-feature garbage if ever I thought of such a thing). I guess that, even in these days of sequelitis, very few film sequences actually get that far. It probably goes without saying that somebody out there in a pointy hat believes that Harry Potter and Whatever the Hell it Is (Order of the Phoenix, apparently) is the best of the endless franchise. As far as this writer is concerned, that series has, since the endurable Prisoner of Atzterbazkazter, been made up of an endless, uninterrupted stream of drab special effects and indifferent juvenile acting. Was that the one with the talking giraffe?

Only maniacs think that Attack of the Clones is the best Star Wars film. Many reasonably sane people argue that Star Trek V: The Final Frontier is the very worst of that series.

Okay, I know what you’re thinking. Fast and the Furious might, when considered against the other films in its series, qualify as the best part five ever. But it cannot surely be as good a film as the Harry Potter picture or the Star Wars film. Pffft! I’d rather watch The Rock face-off against Vin Diesel any day than dally in Hogwarts.

I must be forgetting a good part five, somewhere. Hmmm…

Edit 02/05/11: Aidan points out that You Only Live Twice, not OHMSS, is, of course, the fifth James Bond film. As Alan Partridge famously bellowed: “Stop getting Bond wrong!”

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