2 Fast 2 Furious (2003)
With the success of The Fast and the Furious came the inevitable sequel, 2 Fast 2 Furious.
2 Fast 2 Furious picks up with Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker), who has now left the LAPD to take part in the Miami street racing circuit. It isn’t long before the feds catch up to him and strong-arm him into helping them catch a drug lord.
As a result of The Fast and the Furious’ success, you can see 2 Fast 2 Furious had a larger budget to work with. Among other things, Eva Mendes was the eye candy that was kind of lacking from the previous film. The costumes were generally (slightly) better, as were the cars. Among other rides, we see a Skyline GT-R, which was only on sale in Japan at the time.
John Singleton was also a (slightly) better director than Rob Cohen. As a result, the racing scenes were much better-edited and less obviously bad CG. Nonetheless, Justin Lin’s Fast 6 looked a lot better to me. It looks like the Fast and Furious movies still had a ways to go as far as making cool race scenes.
The acting, including Paul Walker’s, was (slightly) better than that in the predecessor, though I could tell that despite being a rap artist, being the stereotypical ghetto guy was unnatural for the Florida A&M-educated Tyrese Gibson. Let’s not even go into how Devon Aoki served no purpose besides being the stereotypical Asian slut. The only thing that bothered me more than how her character was even thinner than that of Johnny Tran was the tragic mispronunciation of her name Suki.
Sadly, the story was nothing better than the previous one. I feel like with the fourth movie onward, the Fast and Furious movies actually started going in the right direction. If you want to make a movie that’s over the top, then go all out. If you wanted to do something that involved the world’s longest runway, then go do it! 2 Fast 2 Furious’ plot just got increasingly contrived while still making a half-assed attempt to make real-world sense. The entire last half-hour of the movie was easily the most convoluted chase scene I have ever seen; it got to a point where I simply stopped caring what happened.
Considering how bad the original movie was, it’s no surprise that Vin Diesel simply refused to appear in the sequel, hence the awkward lack of Dom Toretto. While 2 Fast 2 Furious was a generally more technically competent film than its predecessor, I felt that it still severely fell short in the areas that mattered, namely in story and characters.