"Worth the Ride, Eventually"
FASTER is a stripped-down, action-packed thriller that gets down to basics by naming its lead characters “Driver” (Dwayne Johnson), “Cop” (Billy Bob Thornton) and “Killer” (Oliver Jackson-Cohen). Its basic plot can be described in a simple sentence or two: Driver gets out of prison after finishing a sentence for his part in a bank robbery. Despite receiving a lecture to live his life in a law-abiding fashion, Driver embarks on a killing spree to gain revenge on his former criminal associates for his brother’s murder after the other members double-crossed “Driver” and his brother.
Driver is pursued by Cop as well as a hitman called Killer that the two-timing, corrupt Cop has hired to kill the gang before Driver can. As Driver mows each criminal down, his rage consumes him until he encounters one robber who made a sincere conversion to Christ and life as a minister. The minister begs for mercy and forgiveness, and the Driver lets him live. Before that, Driver is seen praying intensely in a church and the light from a cross cut into the roof falls upon him.
Driver is now willing to change and forgive, but Cop catches up to him. Cop decides to force a showdown, whether Driver wants one or not.
FASTER has a fun trio of lead performances from Johnson, Thornton and Jackson-Cohen, who even in serious moments throw themselves into the action with gusto and convey deeper emotions when they’re appropriate. The plot isn’t very complex but it definitely gets the job done for action fans, and it’s refreshing to find an R-rated action film without much foul language.
Most impressively, the scenes in which Driver “Driver” is converted to forgiving one criminal-turned-preacher and then praying for guidance and a change of heart are powerfully done. These scenes mix with the movie’s unique washed-out colors to create a film that recalls another redemptive release this year, THE BOOK OF ELI, in action, message and spirit.
For adult action-movie fans, FASTER may be a ride worth taking, but extreme caution is warranted for the violence, brief foul language, suggestive content, and the revenge theme.
(CC, BB, Pa, LL, VVV, S, N, A, DD, MM) Strong Christian, ultimately moral worldview where criminal protagonist bent on revenge to get the other criminals who betrayed and murdered his brother finds that one of his targets has come to Jesus and become a minister, which leads the protagonist to pray and forgive the other man, but he still has to defend himself from the evil ring leader, a corrupt policeman, plus reformed criminal leads sincere worship service; 14 obscenities (including one “f” word), three GDs and one light profanity; some very strong violence and lots of action violence includes bank robbery, shootings, car chase with lead character driving to evade police and causing crashes, protagonist’s brother has throat slit graphically in front of him, man leaves prison and embarks on a string of revenge killings against his fellow robbers who double-crossed him and murdered his brother, killings committed as shootings, ice pick stabbing during fight, one criminal victim is an implied pedophile who gets killed as he's trying to seduce a teenage girl, main cop character is a heroin addict who hides his habit and scars, main cop is revealed to be two-timing and corrupt and hires a hitman to kill gang that protagonist is pursuing and this leads the two men – the protagonist and the hitman – to race each other to their human targets and engage in several gunfights with each other, villain tries to shoot man in the head to kill him, man kills villain in self-defense, man shot in face; no sex scenes but passionate kissing, one villain gets killed before he is about to abuse and kill a teenage girl, and some suggestive dancing by scantily clad women dancers in a bar; scantily clad women in dancers in bar; shots of female cleavage, one woman in underwear and negligee, and upper male nudity; alcohol use; smoking and villain is shown to be a heroin addict, which has bad consequences for him, and minister confesses to previous drug use before his conversion, so drug abuse is rebuked; and, revenge, duplicitous behavior and corruption but they’re shown in distinctly bad light by the final scene plus protagonist has poor relationship with mother who did nothing while his stepfather physically abused him and a second hitman winds up realizing he was sent on a corrupt mission and quits to live a peaceful life with his wife.
FASTER is a stripped-down, action-packed thriller that gets down to basics by naming its lead characters “Driver,” “Cop” and “Killer.” Its basic plot can be described in a simple sentence or two. Driver gets out of prison after finishing a sentence for his part in a bank robbery. Despite receiving a lecture to live a law-abiding life, Driver embarks on a killing spree to gain revenge on his former criminal associates for his brother’s murder after they double-crossed “Driver” and his brother.
FASTER has a fun trio of lead performances. The actors throw themselves into the action with gusto and convey deeper emotions when called upon to do so. The plot isn't very complex but definitely gets the job done for action fans. And, it's refreshing to find an R-rated action movie without much foul language. Most impressively, the scenes where “Driver” finds redemption are powerfully done. They mix with the movie’s unique washed-out colors to create something that recalls another redemptive release this year, THE BOOK OF ELI, in action, message and spirit. For adult action fans, FASTER may be a ride worth taking, but extreme caution is warranted.