The Fast & Furious franchise is at the top of its game. The Fate of the Furious was released last weekend to overwhelming box office success, especially in international markets. The film may not have been quite as well-received as the last entry, Furious 7, but it’s success allows for this series to keep on pushing forward and entertaining audiences in several nations across the world. With it’s huge global success, there is no doubt that the already-announced ninth and tenth films will happen. A valid question that fans have now: where can the series go from here?
Spoilers for The Fate of the Furious
One of the most fascinating things about the franchise is in its ability to cross genres. It transitioned from being a series about illegal street racing, basically a crime drama, before morphing into a heist series and then spy-fi blockbusters. Since the shifts, they have not only garnered a bigger audience, but they have even gained positive critical reception. Ever since Fast Five, reviews have – for the most part – been positive and that is the film where the change in tone is most heavily felt. It made the series about a team and it incorporated the theme of family, directly tied into the action with bigger stakes. They keep working to outdo themselves in each entry and building toward larger-scale fight sequences and car chass. These set pieces are the main core of the recent films, from dragging a bank vault through the streets of Rio de Janiero to racing a nuclear submarine across an icy lake.
One of the ways in which the series can obviously try to top themselves is in the most discussed fan suggestion of having the team go to space. Even the writer said it could be a possibility. This is completely ridiculous but, honestly, that is the charm of it. If James Bond can do it, why not Dominic Toretto? Embracing the silly for the franchise has made it a even bigger success than if it had stuck with the original street racing theme. It gave it new life and there is nowhere to go from here but up, literally.
At the end of The Fate of the Furious, the villain of the film Cipher, played by Charlize Theron, survives and escapes. It is obvious that they have plans for keeping her around and it will be very easy to see her appear in later entries as the villain again or possibly working with a new villain. She will obviously be wanting revenge after having her mission completely thwarted. In addition to returning villains, a return of some good guy characters would be greatly appreciated seeing, as some of the most crowd-pleasing moments in this latest film was the return of several familiar characters.
With returning characters, there is even an opportunity to revisit some unexpected story threads. They could easily go back around to certain moments and characters that deserve more attention. One of them could potentially be related to Han. He may have died, but his story could live on in new ways especially if they wanted to tread back on to Tokyo.
The series has done an excellent job reviving old characters and introducing new ones. They have added famous action stars Jason Statham and Dwayne Johnson to the mix as well as veterans like Kurt Russell. I could easily see some more members of the Expendables films make appearances or perhaps some famous martial artists; Donnie Yen just co-starred with Vin Diesel in the last xXx movie for example. New faces are an easy way to continue the franchise’s success and even expand on it. Adding long-established actors and actresses can draw the attention of audiences over a wide range of ages and nationalities.
It’s impressive that an original blockbuster film franchise has been born out of what started was a simple drama about illegal street racing. The series keeps on pushing forward and moving even as things change. It’s one of the most successful mid-franchise tone changes of all time and there is no telling how far the next film will take it. Whether it brings back old elements, creates new things, or takes itself to space the future has yet to be seen, but the popularity of this franchise is at an all time high and will more than likely continue soaring.
What do you think of this huge franchise? What do you want to see from it? Let us know in the comments!