Fast & Furious

  • Review Date: July 26, 2009
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Action/Adventure
  • Release Year: 2009

Common Sense Media says

Better than the last two, but still pretty mindless action.
  • Review Date: July 26, 2009
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Action/Adventure
  • Release Year: 2009

Age(i)

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17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Although they engage in ongoing illegal activity and plenty of other iffy behavior, Dom and his loved ones are tight-knit and occasionally do the right thing. The government, particularly the FBI, is depicted as ineffective and caring more about how they're perceived than about stopping crime.

Positive role models

Dom is a vigilante motivated by vengeance and grief -- but he helps bring a criminal to justice. On the positive side, the two female supporting characters are strong, and the cast is impressively culturally diverse.

Violence

Explosions, gun fights, bloody fistfights, fatal car chases, and a few disturbing deaths -- someone is purposely mowed down by a car, and someone else is murdered execution style.

Sex

Although there's no nudity, bikini-clad women are shown throughout the film, and in several scenes half-dressed women are shown kissing each other. A man sucks on a woman's toes and encourages women to make out with each other. Two couples kiss passionately.

Language

Frequently used language includes "s--t," "p---y," "ass," "bulls---t," "goddamn," "bitch," one use of "f--k," and Spanish curse words like cojones and chinga.

Consumerism

Automobile companies are well represented: Honda, Ford, Porsche, Nissan, Plymouth, and more. Also Corona beer and Castrol Motor Oil.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Characters drink cocktails, beer, and shots of hard liquor at several parties. Drugs are mentioned, offered, and shown wrapped up for delivery but never used. The Los Angeles-Mexican drug trade is a central plot point of the film. A few characters smoke cigarettes.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this action-packed fourth installment in the Fast and Furious series was heavily marketed to teens. There's plenty of violence, including explosions, shoot outs, fistfights, and lots of car chases -- which end in at least a few deaths (though most are implied rather than shown directly). There are only two love scenes (and the camera cuts before the act itself), but there's plenty of other risque stuff, including several shots of half-dressed women kissing each other and dancing provocatively. Language includes frequent use of words like "s--t," "bitch," and "p---y," as well as Spanish curse words. Characters drink and smoke, and drugs/the drug trade plays a central role in the plot.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

The original crew is back, and they're all still FAST & FURIOUS. Dom Toretto (Vin Diesel) and his girlfriend, Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), are running a profitable gas-stealing scheme in the Dominican Republic when he gets a tip that the feds are after him again. Afraid to endanger his friends, he splits to Panama, where his sister, Mia (Jordana Brewster), eventually calls with awful news. Driven by a need for vengeance, Dom returns to the streets of L.A., where he's determined to catch the thug who's wronged him. To that end, he reluctantly teams up with Paul Walker's FBI Agent Brian O'Conner (who decieved Dom in the original movie) to bring down the head of an international drug ring.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

With its ubiquitous muscle cars, sexy babes, and a catchy soundtrack, Fast & Furious is sure to entertain its target audience of young males looking for some hard-bodied eye candy. Devotees of the franchise should also be particularly pleased with the return of Diesel and the underappreciated Rodriguez, who's especially exciting to watch in the opening chase sequence.

What's disappointing is how angsty writer Chris Morgan (who also wrote Wanted and The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift) has made this seemingly final installment. Walker is incapable of looking animated, so why give him rambling monologues about respect and codes of conduct? Diesel doesn't grieve so much as squint and grimace, yet viewers are subjected to scene after scene of him trying to act wistful, like when he stares at an old photograph or the car he and Letty restored. Let's get real -- people don't care about Dom's feelings, they just want to see him rev his engine in unbelievable chase sequences. The rest is filler.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the the fact that, except for two or three women, most of the movie's female characters are sexy decoration. What kind of message does that send to girls? Do you think the filmmakers care, or are they going after an entirely different audience?

  • What do you think of the idea that some people live by a "code" and others don't? Does following your own set of rules mean that it's OK to do illegal or other iffy things if you think you have a good reason? Which characters in the movie have a code, and which don't?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:April 3, 2009
DVD release date:July 28, 2009
Cast:Michelle Rodriguez, Paul Walker, Vin Diesel
Director:Justin Lin
Studio:Universal Pictures
Genre:Action/Adventure
Run time:105 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:intense sequences of violence and action, some sexual content, language and drug references

This review of Fast & Furious was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Adult Written byMovie Man August 15, 2009
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

Consistantly Average.

Okay, this is the thing: this wasn't a bad movie, but it wasn't a good one either. It was... well, it was just same-old, same-old. I've seen it before; sure, the opening was good (the flipping gasoline truck was a little new), but I saw it in the trailer! So, I pay ten bucks to see a movie I've already seen three versions of?! The first was good. Never saw the second. The third was horrible. The fourth is pretty much the first one, only with a few "new-old" tricks. Not worth it; just see the first one. It's pretty much the same thing, except a little better; probably because this one was such a let down. It had "Nothing new here..." written all over it!

What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Parent Written byPlague December 15, 2009
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

Fast & Furious

Definitely better than the last 2, and more speed, adrenaline, and sweet cars. I recommend this movie for ALL Fast and Furious lovers.

Adult Written bymlb444 June 28, 2009
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

Better than the previous ones.

Well its quite fair on actionn and violence but there are lots of lesbian scenes my cousin had to shut cover my eyes about, some language but pre teeens r gonna love this action flick.

What other families should know
Too much sex

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