Director David Leitch’s “Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw” stars Dwayne Johnson (The Rock) as Agent Luke Hobbs and Jason Statham as ‘reformed’ bad guy Deckard Shaw from the “Fast & Furious” franchise. Hence, the expansive convoluted title. “Hobbs and Shaw” is a lot of fun, and miraculously stupid.
In Writers Chris Morgan and Drew Pearce’s nearly incomprehensible story: MI-6 Operative Hattie Shaw, played by Vanessa Kirby, retrieves the deadly CT-17 virus on her mission. Powerful cyborg Brixton, played by Idris Elba, thwarts the operation seeking to obtain the virus, too. To keep the virus from Brixton, Hattie injects the CT-17 capsule into herself. Yeah, really.
Brixton, who rides this high-tech motorcycle, is super strong, bulletproof, and skilled in martial arts. Eteon Corporation created Brixton, who shares a past with Shaw. Basically, he’s invincible. Yet somehow, Hattie uses her smarts to leverage her escape.
Eteon’s cloaked Leader wants to create a new world order, by first erasing the ‘weaker’ elements of the human race.
Now it’s up to Hobbs and Shaw to work together to retrieve the virus, before it goes active, and again save the world. As Dwayne’s Hobbs reminds Jason’s Shaw, “… which for the record, will be my fourth time.”
Turns out: Hattie (Vanessa) is Shaw’s little sister. Consequently, Hobbs finds the smart, beautiful, strong, kick-ass Hattie attractive. According to Shaw, Hobbs ain’t getting with his little Sis. No way. Chris and Drew’s obvious narrative tension is hilarious.
The sheer upside of “Hobbs and Shaw” is its amazing cast. I love The Rock: He’s awesome. Dude is handsome, ripped, funny, and raises an eyebrow better than Mr. Spock. Well, almost. Jason Statham is a Baaaaad Man. In one scene Jason fights 4 dudes in close quarters. He gets hit from different angles, yet he’s just thrashing the hell out of those guys with punches, kicks and joint locks. Vanessa Kirby, who also starred in “Mission: Impossible – Fallout”, is the total bad ass as Hattie. She displays solid martial arts skills. Ironically, that propels the narrative when her Hattie battles Hobbs. Hobs distinguishes that she fought to escape, not to kill. Vanessa also has an ironic sense of humor. Idris Elba commands absolute cool as villainous, mostly machine Brixton. As he says, “I’m Black Superman”.
Director David Leitch also directed “John Wick” (uncredited co-director), “Atomic Blonde”, and “Deadpool 2”. His art is electrifying cinematic action. In “Hobbs and Shaw” he gets to work with Jason Statham, who I think is an elite martial artist, and the absolute best in the movie game today. Their collaboration is often breathtaking.
Dwayne and Jason have palpable natural screen chemistry. No small feat given their individual undeniable charisma. Their trash talk is hysterical. Hobbs says of Shaw’s voice: It’s like dragging his privates “over shattered glass…” Well, Hobbs actually used another word for privates, among other things. Just saying.
The miraculously stupid occurs near the end, with the fight with Samoan tribal weapons, and the tow truck and helicopter. WTF? It’s in the movie trailer, too.
That being all said, “Hobbs and Shaw” is very cool. The poignant recurring theme of the “Fast & Furious” movies is family. We always love, protect, and forgive our own.
So basically, see “Hobbs and Shaw”. The Rock and Jason Statham are movie star swag. It’s set up for “Hobbs and Shaw 2”. And I would see that one, too. Just saying.