“Hobbs & Shaw” is directed by David Leitch, stars Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson & Jason Statham and is a spin off of the “Fast & Furious” franchise. Leitch is known as directing of other films like “V For Vendetta”, “John Wick”, “Atomic Blonde” & “Deadpool 2”. The film also stars Idris Elba, Venessa Kirby, Cliff Curtis, Eddie Marsan & Helen Mirren. After the success of “The Fate & The Furious”, Universal had been wanting to have some sort of spin off series from the franchise. Star and producer Vin Diesel had been on board for a spin about his character, Dom Toretto back in 2003 but ultimately settled to produce “Hobbs and Shaw” after the unique yet strong chemistry of Johnson and Statham in The Fate and the Furious.
After an MI6 tactical squad is ambushed by terrorist, Hattie Shaw (Kirby) takes matters into her own hands and runs off with the MI6 cargo which is chemical biological weapon, code named “Snowflake”. An mysterious corporation, Eteon and its newly “enhanced” super soldier, Brixton Lore (Elba) are hell bent on retrieving it back by any means necessary. Hattie’s older brother and former MI6 Agent turn mercenary, Deckard (Statham) is called in to help her but along with Deckard comes DSS Agent Luke Hobbs (Johnson) who is sent by the CIA to help retrieve the compound. This creates a whirlwind of problems given the long history between Hobbs and Shaw. Ego and Machismo is put to the ultimate test as 2 rivals must come together to face a common enemy and once again save the world from a possible global threat.
Despite already having major success in the Fast and Furious franchise, this film goes back to basics of what makes a damn good entertaining action film. Johnson has been apart of the franchise since 2011’s “Fast Five” where his character makes his debut while Statham was introduced in 2015’s “Furious 7” but as the film’s main villain. After the release of the first Fast and Furious in 2001, 2 short films were released in 2003 and 2009 as spin-offs but ultimately ended up nothing more preludes to their sequels. This film reminded me of a modern day 80s or 90s action films with the over the top acting, cheesy one liners, crazy visual effects and massive amounts of action and adventure. It had certain call backs to movies like “Lethal Weapon” & “Tango & Cash”. Johnson shines through in character and brings his signature charisma while Statham holds his own while also being his gritty tough guy with a British flavor. Elba as the main villain work well against the 2 action heroes. Not over the top but also not menacing, just a brute with one goal in mind and a no prisoner attitude made for a cliche yet great bad guy.
While the franchise did have their ups and down as far as tone and storytelling, this film really drives home to be a straight up good old fashioned action movie and blended both historic action with modernize visual effects. It has all the twist and turns and cliches of the genre but doesn’t disappoint. “Hobbs and Shaw” was a typical popcorn flick that lacks one hell of punch. It can looked at as its own film while still having a Fast and Furious tone and build.