Fast, furious and a tearful tribute to Paul

Fast & Furious 7. Photo: PA Photo/Universal Picture
Fast & Furious 7. Photo: PA Photo/Universal Picture

It’s not the gleaming, high-octane motors, scantily clad women or outlandish gravity-defying stunts that will have audiences rushing to see this instalment of The Fast And The Furious franchise.

Instead, it’s the final screen appearance of handsome leading man Paul Walker, who died halfway through production, which will invariably guarantee supercharged box office returns for James Wan’s sleek sequel.

Fast & Furious 7 is dedicated to Walker’s memory and his unfinished scenes have been respectfully completed using previously unseen footage from earlier films, or by digitally grafting his facial features onto the bodies of his brothers, Caleb and Cody, who act as stand-ins.

The digital trickery is impressive and while the joins aren’t completely seamless, we suspend our disbelief, which is already hovering in the troposphere after the stunt team mocks the laws of physics to drive one car out of the penthouse of an Abu Dhabi skyscraper.

A heartfelt, if protracted, coda between Diesel and Walker provides the former with an opportunity to publicly say farewell to his cinematic brother in arms.