Family no more…
If there’s one Hollywood franchise that tends to lean on the tropes of family life, it’s Universal’s Fast and Furious saga, which has grown and evolved into a true billion-dollar juggernaut since Vin Diesel first waxed lyrical about living life a quarter-mile at a time back in ’01.
The latest chapter, simply titled Fast & Furious 9, sees Diesel’s gravel-voiced action hero Dominic Toretto come face-to-face with his greatest challenge to date: long-lost brother Jakob, who is played by none other than John Cena himself.
Yes, if past entries in the franchise used the F-word as a not-so-subtle theme, then Fast & Furious 9 will double down on the importance of family. In fact, hot on the heels of last weekend’s trailer, Total Film (h/t GamesRadar+) has dropped two new pics from Fast 9 that see Dom go head-to-head with his little brother.
And, in explaining Dom’s complicated relationship with Jakob, Vin Diesel said the following:
The theme that we’ve been playing with up until this point has been the family that you create with people from all walks of life, the family that is not blood. What makes the story of Fast 9 so fascinating is how that altruistic concept could neglect the family defined by blood. That’s where this story goes.
Not all blood is family, then, which only portends all kinds of danger for Dom and his young son Brian. But what about Jakob’s own motivations? Well, as Cena tells Total Film, it turns out his Fast and Furious newcomer is “a bit of a loner,” and possesses all the necessary skills to put Dom and his crew to the sword.
Jakob is a bit of a loner. In being a bit of a loner, he has to craft all the skills that it takes. He’s skilled in performance driving, he’s skilled in combat, he’s skilled in espionage and covert tactics. You see how the Fast family operates. Each member has a distinct set of skills, and that’s why they can make the impossible, possible. Jakob possesses all those skills, which makes him an insurmountable threat.
Fast & Furious 9 speeds into theaters worldwide on May 22nd, and yes, after much campaigning, Universal has finally rolled out the red carpet for Sung Kang, whose Han Seoul-Oh was presumed dead since as far back as Tokyo Drift. Then again, this isn’t exactly a franchise known for abiding the laws of physics. Look for Kang’s fan-favorite to return in May.