“Fast Five” : Mean and Sleek

Summer = movies with furious car chase scenes and lots of bang-bang, lots of muscled heros and bodacious babes, and as much popcorn as one can stand to ingest in one sitting.

So here’s the first summer action movie of 2011 (even though it is not even May:  Hollywood and self are always anticipating):  “Fast and Furious Five”

You have to hand it to Vin Diesel: He knows his fan base, and he rarely deviates from a successful formula. There he is, making a grand entrance in the midst of a car heist that is taking place on a moving train — you could almost hear the entire audience at the Redwood City Century 20 (quite a few of whom were middle-aged, if not older) give one long collective AAAAAH.

He doesn’t attempt to grow hair, thank God. And his arms look like blown-up balloons.

Nicely balancing the cartoonish look is the presence of one very thin, beautiful girl of indeterminate ethnicity (Jordana Brewster: She could be Latina; she could be Eurasian; or she could just be Caucasian with a very nice tan), and Paul Walker, the luckiest white guy on earth, because he gets to earn street cred with the likes of Vin Diesel, by appearing in a movie where his blonde good looks appear as just another “type” —  along with Latino, Asian, African American, you name it . . .

Plus, Paul Walker single-handedly makes Converse sneakers into the ne plus ultra for all white boys who seek to hang out with cool ethnic types. And he does NOT have cartoonishly large biceps, like every other action star nowadays (who all look as if they are auditioning for a role as the next Marvel action hero).

The only quibble self might have with this movie is that the girl who was apparently once a Mossad agent is too thin, and when she unclothes and appears in a purple bikini, self was almost revolted at the sight of her bony back. Nice butt, though. And great face.

Let’s see: there were at least three car chases which were indeed furious. And Dwayne Johnson, the guy who was once known on the WWF as “The Rock” is here, playing a man who hunts fugitives on behalf of the U.S. Government (Self forgets the precise name of the agency: it wasn’t the CIA, it wasn’t the DEA, or maybe it was the DEA, who knows? Who cares?)

In one of the very last scenes, there is a very nice soundtrack, and a girl with an enormous butt gets out of a black car that looks like a DeLorean. Self thought she was Kim Kardashian, but the camera never zoomed in, so self figured it couldn’t be Kim Kardashian.  Otherwise, the camera would really have zoomed in. It’s just a girl who makes us wonder if she is Kim Kardashian.

The Asian guy on Vin Diesel’s team is very, very hot. He ends up with the Girl-who-used-to-be-a-Mossad-agent, the super-skinny one, boo.

(By the way, Vin, why is it taking you so long to come up with the Part III to Chronicles of Riddick? We are so tired of watching repeats of Chronicles of Riddick!)

And, just because self adores Salon magazine, here’s a link to a post about the greatest movie car chase scenes of all time.  Naturally, since this is artsy-fartsy Salon, self never even heard of 5 out of the 10 movies on the list.  She does agree with the choices of “Bullitt,” the car chase scene in “Ronin,” the mad tanker chase scene of the “Road Warrior” and, of course, the under-the-elevated chase scene of “The French Connection.”  And here’s one of self’s most unforgettable car chase scenes:  the one at the end of the first “Terminator,” when Sarah Conner and Kyle Reese are trying to escape from Arnold the Terminator.  (BTW, that scene where Terminator tells a truck driver “GET.  OUT” in his heavy Austrian accent?  And the truck driver sidles away more than willingly?  Got to be one of the best scenes James Cameron ever filmed.  A real classic.)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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