One of the four-thousand trailers that ran prior to my “Furious 7″ screening Thursday night was for the upcoming James Bond entry “Spectre.” And what a bummer those 96 seconds are. In Daniel Craig’s fourth go-round, the world is still colorless, Bond is still working through his prissy emotional baggage, and the tone is one of oppressive brooding seriousness.
Nevertheless I don’t mourn the loss of a simpler and better era when a new Bond film promised a grand old escapist time at the movies. That, after all, is why God invented the “Fast and Furious” franchise.
The most improbable mega-franchise in movie history launches its seventh chapter this weekend, and it is everything James Bond films used to be: insanely action-packed, exotic locales, colorful cinematography, and a never ending supply of beautiful feminine eye candy.
“Furious 7″ picks up not long after the previous chapter. It also ends a trilogy that began with “Fast Five,” which is when the series morphed from the anti-hero car genre to the heist genre. “Furious 7″ comes straight out of the Men (and Women) On a Mission genre, and knocks it out of the park — not as far as the previous two installments, but far enough.