Posted in Commentary, Movie, Music

Furious7: See you again

“It’s been a long day without you, my friend.
And i’ll tell you all about it when i see you again.”

I don’t even watch every installment of the Fast & Furious franchise yet listening to this song evokes so many feels. And watching the very short clip of Vin Diesel crooning these lines, trill and all, tears me up. Every single time.

I may be easily moved but i don’t cry at the littlest thing UNLESS it’s something i can relate to. And this — the lyrics, the allusion, the homage — i can. Perhaps that’s where the magic lies. It may not be entirely about the memory of the late Paul Walker, but the message is so universal it speaks to anybody who has ever lost a dear one. Besides the poignant lyrics, See you again comes with a beautiful melody — even the rap parts are peppered in quite tenderly and gently, as far as rapping goes — which adds to the wistful undertone and sustains the swell. Heartfelt indeed.

On Furious7, i’d say it is an easy watch with uncomplicated storytelling. Grasping what’s going on isn’t much of an issue even without knowledge of previous offerings. Why, most of its 137-minute runtime is packed with punches and filled with exhilarating rides of thrilling car chases/crashes, slick action sequences, heart-stopping and jaw-dropping stunts. For real. That car skydiving or people-transporting from car window to car window… boy, was that insanely mind-blowing.

So sit back, relax, and enjoy one last ride… with Paul.

Sharply directed, the movie moves at breakneck speed (duh), sending its characters flying from one end to the other end of the world and going from one backbreaking fight to another without missing a beat (they must be half-robots, right?). When there is downtime, each fleeting moment is filled with talks about family and final goodbye. Some are aw-inducing, some are embarrassingly cheesy. But, come on, who watches action flick for its story? An added bonus if it has one; if it doesn’t… well, depending on how atrocious it is, it may or may not change how you feel about the movie. Which isn’t to mean that Furious7‘s is bad.

Lastly, the ending. We cannot NOT talk about it, can we? While i was inadvertently spoiled of its final scene through the above music video, it doesn’t lessen the impact. As soon as the intro was played during that penultimate beach-side scene, tears began to form. Seeing the closing scene for the second time, on the big screen this time, i could feel that lump in my throat. That was one of the best, most well-thought-out ending scenes i’ve ever seen.

When an unexpected circumstance occurs to one of its main cast mid-production, it goes without saying the the script and/or direction of the project has to be reworked to work around the arising situation. The easiest solution, perhaps, is to sacrifice the character. Yet, Furious7 managed to come up with a different scenario to retire Brian in a honorable and memorable way. Admittedly, his role in this installment isn’t as significant as Dom’s that i feel like there’s something missing from his story arc. But his character has a fitting closure and bittersweet sendoff.

“No matter where you are, whether it’s a quarter mile away or halfway across the world… You’ll always be with me. And you’ll always be my brother.”

At that, they go their separate ways, and the camera follows Brian’s white car, pans into the horizon, until the screen fades to white.

It was a great ride.

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