(Photo Credit: Universal Pictures)
‘Hobbs & Shaw’ Races Towards ‘Mission: Impossible’ Territory
Spin-offs of popular franchises can prove tricky.
Fans expect one thing, but if the spin-off just rehashes old storylines what’s the purpose in the first place?
Well, “Hobbs & Shaw,” a spin-off of the “Fast and Furious” franchise shows how to do it by retaining elements that made its family tree fruitful while also venturing into new territory.
While “Hobbs & Shaw” includes the required speed and automobiles for a “Fast and Furious” film, the spin-off adds elements of “Mission: Impossible” mystery and espionage and the current reality of terrorism to create another branch to very sturdy family tree.
To say that Hobbs (Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, “Fighting With My Family”) and Shaw (Jason Statham, “The Meg”) have a turbulent past epitomizes the word understatement.
Best friends they are not.
But not being best buds does not mean they do not make an effective duo.
Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant did not always get along, but they led the Los Angeles Lakers to three NBA championships.
The classic lineup of the iconic rap group Geto Boys, Willie D, Scarface and the late Bushwick Bill, constantly stayed embroiled in controversy, but they broke barriers for Dirty South rappers.
So hopefully Hobbs and Shaw can coexist for the sake of mankind in the film, “Hobbs & Shaw.”
In “Hobbs & Shaw,” terrorists have taken global destruction to the next level.
Instead of bombing buildings or hijacking airplanes, terrorists have graduated to creating viruses that can wipe out all human beings if the viral sample gets into the wrong hands.
The viral sample goes by the moniker of snowflake, and once it enters the bloodstream it has the power to liquefy a human’s organs causing death.
MI6 operatives have received the assignment of obtaining the viral sample from suspected terrorists.
However, their mission involves only capturing the viral sample and not causing any casualties.
Unfortunately, covert missions often do not go as planned and the mission leads to catastrophic consequences.
Not only does the mission cause controversy, but also the failed mission leaves MI6 operative Hattie (Vanessa Kirby, “Mission: Impossible – Fallout”) in a precarious situation.
Hattie does not only have to worry about law enforcement and intelligence officials tracking her down and possibly killing her for taking snowflake, she also has to worry about Brixton (Idris Elba) and his comrades from a biochemical company finding her.
If the wrong people capture Hattie it could mean danger for her and/or danger for the entire human race.
Intelligence officials from America know that there is only one person that can find Hattie and therefore find the virus before it gets into the wrong hands.
And British intelligence officials know that they have one man who could solve the predicament as well.
The problem is that in order to complete the mission, the two have to work together and like oil and water, the two men do not mix.
And when Hobbs and Shaw find out that there is a connection between them and Hattie that throws the mission for a loop that might spell doom for everyone involved and even everyone not involved.
“Hobbs & Shaw” is the definition of action packed.
But “Hobbs & Shaw” sets itself apart from previous “Fast and Furious” films because of the humanistic side of the film.
Fans will get some background information on Hobbs and Shaw that they might not have gotten from previous films.
Moviegoers will learn more about both men’s families, which gives some clues about why they act the way that they do.
Furthermore, “Hobbs & Shaw” succeeds because it does not rely too heavily on the need for speed.
Do not get it twisted; “Hobbs & Shaw” is still a “Fast and Furious” film.
Fans will get déjà vu as a result of some of the scenes that take place in Samoa because those scenes are classic “Fast and Furious” moments.
Furthermore, early in “Hobbs & Shaw,” the skyscraper scene is classic action film greatness.
But “Hobbs & Shaw” has a certain 2019 flavor that past films did not have with its reliance on intelligence and sophistication.
Furthermore, Shaw brings his own regal air of class and dignity to the film, while Hobbs continues being the brawn of the operation.
Additionally, any film that stars the classy Helen Mirren will have the scent of high society anyway.
The role of Hattie is just as important to the film because of the recent trend in Hollywood of super bad women who can hold their own in a fistfight with their male counterparts.
As a matter of fact, Hattie more than holds her own against the men in “Hobbs & Shaw.”
And the tension that exists between Hobbs and Shaw as a result of Hattie makes a turbulent “friendship” even rockier, adding comedic elements to the film.
But the funniest moments of the film come from the characters Locke and Dinkley.
Locke somehow he thinks he is Hobbs’ best friend, even getting a matching tattoo.
And Dinkley is just an Air Marshall but he wants to assist Hobbs and Shaw even if he has to help them while handling his business on the toilet.
When moviegoers discover who the actors are that portray Locke and Dinkley that will be worth the price of admission by itself.
Hopefully, the actors who portray Locke and Dinkley will become mainstays in the “Hobbs & Shaw” franchise.
With those two actors, in addition to Johnson and Statham, star power will be in abundance for “Hobbs & Shaw.”
That star power will definitely eclipse the power in the original “Fast and Furious” films.
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