‘Furious 7’: Record-breaking fan favorite

The record-breaking seventh installment to the “Fast and Furious” franchise proves that anything can be accomplished with the support of family.  

“Furious 7” reached $143.6 million in the box office last week, making the ninth most successful opening weekend in the United States of all time. 

The film, directed by James Wan, featured an all-star cast that long-term enthusiasts of the series have come to consider as family themselves. 

The tragic passing of the beloved “Fast and Furious” star Paul Walker took a huge blow to everyone involved in the production and fans alike. Despite this loss,  “Furious 7” continued to convinced audiences that the recipe for a high-velocity storyline, combined with a crew of actors with unparalleled passion for the franchise, makes for an awesome film. 

The success of the street-racing-turned-vehicular warfare series began in 2001 with the release of “The Fast and The Furious,” where leads Brian O’Conner (Walker) and Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) meet on the streets of Los Angeles. 

After a bond between the two expert drivers developed, a family blossomed over a span of six films. The once-convicts transformed into a group of people whose love for one another enabled them to overcome the consequences of the criminal life they are trying to escape. 

“Furious 7” is the culmination of the 14-year-long saga and is the wildest, most outrageous (and corniest) chapter in the series. 

The crew, including: Roman Pearce, (Tyrese Gibson), Tej (Chris “Ludacris” Bridges), Letty Ortiz (Michelle Rodriguez), and Luke Hobbs (Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson) along-side Brian and Dom, mourn the death of a Han, a member of the group who was killed while in Tokyo. 

The man responsible for the death of Han is Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham), brother of Owen Shaw, a criminal mastermind the crew exterminated in the previous film. Little brother Ian is a former Special Forces assassin whose lust to avenge his brother is unprecedented. 

Dom and company hook up with a CIA director-type character, “Mr. Nobody” (Kurt Russell), to stop becoming the hunted and become the hunters. The chase takes them through Tokyo and Abu Dhabi before ultimately returning to their hometown of Los Angeles to finish the fight on their own turf. 

Along the way, they must jump their cars through buildings, parachute out of planes in their cars and even exchange people between their cars while evading an airborne terrorist. 

Numerous outrageous stunts were performed and near-death situations were evaded in typical “Fast and Furious” manner. 

If one is not for clichéd special effects or endless fight scenes, this movie is not for them. It takes a true fan of the franchise to look past the corny one-liners and flawed plot-holes of these films, with “Furious 7” being no exception. 

Yahoo! Movies themselves came up with 40 comments regarding the inconsistencies in the storyline. 

However, when taking the film at face-value and ignoring the traits that hinder it’s chances of winning best original screenplay at next year’s Academy Awards, it ascertains its status as the most successful installment in the franchise. 

A very touching ending paid tribute to Walker and left theater attendees, as well as a STAR reviewer, in tears. 

While his untimely death took place before Walker was able to complete the film himself, his brothers Cody and Caleb were able to step in with the help of computer-generated imagery.

The family that won the hearts of car enthusiasts and action movie fans worldwide stuck together to produce a film that properly concludes one of the most enthralling epics of this generation.