There’s really not much one can say about The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, so I’ll keep this one brief. It was free, and I got what I paid for. The movie has nothing to do with the first two films (blessedly) and as such, the “freshness” factor works in its favor. Shawn (Lucas Black) is a rebellious teen who is sent to Japan to live with his dad, who will hopefully straighten him out. Of course, Shawn immediately falls into the underground world of “drift racing” in Tokyo, and soon a rivalry is formed between him and the nephew of a Yakuza ganglord.
In this type of film, the emphasis is not on character development or even a sensible plot, but rather on the races. And I have to say, they were very well done – the drifting was fun to watch, and there was a nice fresh energy about the whole thing. I mean, how many times can you see a drag race before it becomes old and predictable? Lucky for us, director Justin Lin tries to keep things new and inventive, from camera angles to car choreography.
Brian Tyler’s punchy score is buried under the sound mix, but does manage to poke its head through every so often. When the film ended, I didn’t feel like my time was completely wasted – I was entertained, and ultimately that’s what matters. But let’s also be realistic about it – this is a rental, at best.