I really enjoyed Fast Five, despite having not seen the other four Fast the Furious movies. It was, simply, a redblooded, hearty action flick with insane car stunts and giggle-worthy dialogue. And over the course of the jam-packed 130 minutes, I found myself adding another layer: I decided that there was a sordid love affair going on between the characters played by Vin Diesel and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.
I didn’t do this because the movie failed to grab my attention, but because the plot was so ludicrous already that this just made all kinds of sense. Sweaty, ridiculously muscled men shouting in each other’s faces? It’s more than a bit homoerotic.
I’m not alone in this thinking; Saturday Night Live ran a silly skech in 2009 called The Fast and the Bi-Curious, starring Andy Samberg and Seth Rogen as two drag racers who talk uncomfortably close and use all sorts of steamy euphemisms.
But back to Fast Five. Diesel reprises his role as Dom Torretto, mumbling retorts out of the side of his mouth while sauntering into a fight. Having not seen the other movies beyond the trailers, I was surprised by the sly smile that accompanies a lot of his lines; this is an easily confident guy who knows when to put up.
Then there’s The Rock’s character, Hobbs. A federal agent tasked with catching the crew, he means business. We know this because he has a scraggly goatee-chin beard, and because he sweats in every single scene. I have to tell you — seeing this movie on an IMAX screen, with The Rock’s forty-foot head just dripping beads of sweat in every frame, was an experience I don’t need to repeat. By contrast, Dom’s face is clean shaven, his head bald. He never loses his cool, even when jumping out of a car hurtling over a giant waterfall.