"Reel Reviews: ‘Hobbs & Shaw’ nice sidetrack in ‘Fast & Furious’ franchise" by: Jessica Shepard

   I have to preface this review by telling you all that I’m an avid fan of the “Fast & Furious” movie franchise.
   I love everything about it from the cars and fight scenes to the slight science fiction weapons and the music.
   Keeping that in mind, “Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw,” only has a few of those instances.
   The film is a spin-off of The Fast and the Furious franchise centered on Luke Hobbs and Deckard Shaw, characters introduced in the main series. 
   Starring Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham as Hobbs and Shaw respectively, the film follows the unlikely allies with co-stars Idris Elba, Vanessa Kirby, Eddie Marsan, and Helen Mirren.
   A crew of MI6 agents attempt to retrieve a virus, Snowflake, which can be programmed to decimate millions of people, from terrorist organization Eteon. 
   Brixton Lore (Elba), an Eteon operative with advanced cybernetic implants that allow him to perform superhuman feats, arrives and kills all agents except for their leader, Hattie Shaw (Kirby), who injects Snowflake into herself as a dormant carrier and escapes. 
   With Eteon’s connections, Brixton frames Hattie as a traitor who killed her team and stole Snowflake, forcing her to go on the run.
   Luke Hobbs (Johnson) and Deckard Shaw (Statham), Hattie’s brother, are both informed of the missing virus and are assigned to work together reluctantly to track it down. 
   And that’s where things get more interesting and entertaining as Hobbs and Shaw quickly fall into their usual banter from previous films.
   Each man swears they work alone and loudly refuse to cooperate; taking different paths to find Hattie. 
   Deckard leaves and goes to Hattie’s house, while Hobbs manages to track Hattie himself.
   After a brief scuffle, he brings her to the CIA office, as Deckard then returns. 
   The office is attacked and Hattie is taken by Brixton, who Deckard recognizes is an old colleague he previously shot before he was revived by Eteon. 
   Hobbs and Deckard pursue and rescue Hattie during the ensuing car chase, and they manage to escape from Brixton, who falls off his motorcycle and crashes through the second level of a double-decker bus.
   The trio locates Professor Andreiko (Marsan), Snowflake’s creator, who informs them that to prevent Snowflake from eradicating humanity, Hattie has to either be killed or use an extraction device which is located within the Eteon factory in Ukraine. 
   After arming themselves in Moscow, the trio infiltrate the factory, where they manage to retrieve the extraction device before escaping and destroying the facility; Andreiko is killed and the device is badly damaged during their escape. 
   Hobbs decides to bring the trio to his childhood home in Samoa to visit his estranged brother Jonah to repair the device and lay low before confronting Brixton again.
   Things really culminate to a wicked climax in Samoa and we see Hobbs and Shaw finally working together to the very end.
   There’s lots of underlying family problems in these characters’ histories and we get to see them resolve most of them while trying to keep the main storyline intact. 
   Hobbs & Shaw is rated PG-13 for prolonged sequences of action and violence, suggestive material and some strong language.

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