Take a look back at every big screen entry in the Fast and Furious franchise!
Few film franchises make it to eight films – and those that do probably shouldn’t. The Fast and Furious franchise is about to hit its eighth film, however, and we hope they never stop. You don’t have to understand the plot to enjoy the Fast and Furious franchise’s wicked cool car chases, but let’s be honest, it can’t hurt.
In order to get you prepped for The Fate of the Furious, the eighth film in the Fast and Furious franchise (which hits theaters April 14th), here is a quick primer to the franchise.
The Fast and the Furious (2001)
Directed by: Rob Cohen
The first in the Fast and Furious franchise, the film was loosely inspired by a Vibe magazine article, “Racer X,” written by Ken Li, about New York street racing. The film introduced us to Vin Diesel‘s Dominic Toretto, an ex-con and leader of an elite, underground racing club. Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) plays a cop who goes undercover with the crew, thinking that they may be behind a series of truck hijackings. Brian started dating Dom’s sister, Mia (Jordana Brewster), and becomes part of the crew. Unfortunately, it turns out Dom really is behind the thefts. Brian has to reveal his status as a cop, which understandably pisses off Dom, but when Dom is attacked by a rival street gang, Brian aids him. He doesn’t arrest Dom and in fact gives him his car, based on an earlier wager.
2 Fast 2 Furious (2003)
Directed by: John Singleton
The Fast and Furious franchise continues with Brian O’Conner, who is given a deal in order to wipe out his criminal record. In exchange, he must go undercover and bring down Carter Verone, a drug lord. Brian agrees, but insists he choose his own partner. He goes with Roman Pearce (Tyrese Gibson), a childhood friend with a criminal record of his own. They are hired as drivers for Verone, and Brian falls for Monica, a woman who he doesn’t know is also an undercover agent. After capturing Verone and his gang, and saving Monica from her kidnapping after she is found out, Roman and Brian return home to Miami and plan to open a garage with money they both pocketed from the drug organization.
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006)
Directed by: Justin Lin
Tokyo Drift is kind of like the Halloween 3: Season of the Witch of the Fast and Furious franchise. After a bad crash in an illegal street race, Sean Boswell is sent to live with his dad, a Naval officer, stationed in Tokyo. Sean takes up with the Tokyo racing scene, which involves “drifting,” a driving style he is not familiar with. He crashes a lot because of this, but eventually makes a friend, Han, who teaches him about drifting. There is a Yakuza turf war going on, which Sean must avoid, and he ends up winning his final race, against a Yakuza man. Now a star racer, Dominic Toretto shows up and challenges Sean to a race.
Fast & Furious (2009)
Directed by: Justin Lin
Dom has assembled a new crew which features a few familiar faces, namely Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), his girlfriend. They are back to doing truck hijackings, this time in the Dominican Republic. The crew eventually disbands and Dom leaves Letty to protect her, but a few months later discovers that Letty has been murdered. As he tracks her killer, he runs into Brian, now working at the FBI to track down a drug dealer named Arturo Braga. The pair go undercover and join Braga’s gang. Along the way, Dom learns that Letty was working undercover for Brian, trying to clear Dom’s name. Brian makes a deal with his superiors, that he will lead Braga into a trap in exchange for clearing Dom’s record. He succeeds, but it turns out that the Braga Brian has been chasing is a decoy. The real Braga has escaped to Mexico. Dom and Brian head south of the border and catch Braga, but Braga’s henchmen try to intercede. Brian is injured, and Dom kills one of the henchmen. The cops are closing in, and Brian tells Dom to run. But Dom is tired of running and turns himself over. He gets 25 years in prison. As he is being transferred to prison, Brian and Mia lead a team to intercept the bus….
Fast Five (2011)
Directed by: Justin Lin
Picking up exactly where Fast & Furious left off, the team successfully intercepts the prison bus and manages to free Dom, with plans to meet up in Rio de Janeiro. While Mia and Brian await Dom’s arrival, they join a plan to steal some cars from a train. The cars are seized assets, one of which belongs to one of their new crew members, Zizi. Mia steals Zizi’s car and Zizi kills the DEA agents assigned to watching over the cars. It turns out the car is hiding a computer chip detailing the criminal empire of Zizi’s boss, Reyes.
Diplomatic Security Services agent Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) comes in at this point, looking to arrest Brian and Dom. Dom wants to split up and flee Rio, but Mia reveals she is pregnant, so the crew decides to use the info on the chip to steal Reyes’ money and start a new life together. Hobbs arrests Mia, Dom, Brian, and another team member, Vince, but before they can be extradited, Reyes’ men attack. Hobbs’ men are killed, but Dom’s team rescues Hobbs before escaping. Dom and Hobbs team up to tear out the vault holding Reyes’ money from the police station. After the intense scene, Hobbs says he will give them a 24-hour start, provided they leave the money in the vault. They agree, because as it turns out, the vault was a decoy. It is empty. Brian, Mia, and Dom switched the vaults and got all the money. They escape to a tropical beach.
In a mid-credits scene, Hobbs is given a file about a recent hijacking in Berlin. One of the members is Letty, who was presumed dead.
Fast & Furious 6 (2013)
Directed by: Justin Lin
The crew has split up to live around the world. Hobbs is investigating the destruction of a Russian military convoy at the hands of a British special forces agent, Owen Shaw. Hobbs needs Dom and his crew to help him. In exchange, they will receive amnesty for their past crimes and be allowed to return to the United States. To entice Dom further, Hobbs reveals that Letty is part of Shaw’s crew.
In London, the crew gets into it with Shaw’s crew. Letty is there, and shoots Dom without hesitation; turns out she has amnesia. Shaw took her in, but later finds out about her previous relationship with Dom. Hobbs reveals that Shaw’s crew is building a “deadly device,” to be sold to the highest bidder. Shaw’s crew begins the heist that will get them the final component for the device. He and Letty are cruising around in a military tank, which flips. Dom risks his life to save Letty. Shaw and his team are captured, but it is revealed that he has kidnapped Mia, and that Hobbs’ partner, Riley, was working for Shaw this whole time. Hobbs is forced to release them in order to protect Mia. Letty chooses to stay with Dom.
Shaw and his crew try to escape on a cargo airplane, but Dom’s crew keeps the plane from taking off. Mia is saved (Gal Gadot’s Gisele sacrifices herself to save Han from one of Shaw’s men), and Dom rescues the computer chip from the exploding plane, ensuring their full pardon from Hobbs. They return to the Toretto family home in Los Angeles, with Letty, who still doesn’t have her memory back, but remarks that “this feels like home.”
The mid-credits scene takes place in Tokyo, where Han is in a car race. He is broadsided by a car, whose driver walks away from the scene after leaving Letty’s cross necklace. Han’s car explodes and the man (Jason Statham) calls Dom to say, “You don’t know me. You’re about to.”
Furious 7 (2015)
Directed by: James Wan
Shaw had a brother, Deckard (Jason Statham), who now wants vengeance for his brother. He bombs Hobbs’ office after stealing files on Dom and his team, which severely injures Hobbs in the process. Han, one of Dom’s crew, is killed in Tokyo by Deckard, and Dom goes to claim Han’s body. (This is where the stuff with Dom in Tokyo in Tokyo Drift comes in, making the third film in the series fit in around here chronologically.)
At Han’s funeral, Deckard attempts to get into it with Dom, but Dom is rescued by a covert ops team lead by Mr. Nobody (Kurt Russell). He will help Dom stop Deckard in exchange for Dom and his crew’s help in getting the God’s Eye, a computer program that can track people. He also wants Ramsey, the hacker who created the program, to be saved from a mercenary, Jakande.
Dom agrees, and the team heads out to the Middle East, where they rescue Ramsey and steal the God’s Eye from the billionaire who bought it. They track down Deckard but are ambushed by Jakande and his people, putting the God’s Eye into his hands. Everyone returns to Los Angeles, where Hobbs breaks out of the hospital to join the fight. Ramsey regains control of the God’s Eye and shuts it down. There are lots of explosions, lots of fights, and Dom is believed dead. Letty cradles him and admits she remembers everything. Dom wakes up and regains his life with Letty.
The final scene of the film is a tribute to the late Paul Walker. His character, Brian, retires from the game in the sequence.
The Fate of the Furious (2017)
Directed by: F. Gary Gray
With Dom and Letty on their honeymoon, Brian and Mia having retired from the game, and with the rest of the crew exonerated, the team has found a semblance of a normal life. But the Fast and Furious franchise continues as a mysterious woman seduces Dom back into a world of crime he cannot seem to escape, causing him to betray those closest to him. They will face trials that will test them as never before. That mysterious woman is played by Charlize Theron.