DVD Talk
Release List Reviews Shop Newsletter Forum DVD Giveaways Blu-Ray Advertise
Reviews & Columns
Reviews
DVD
TV on DVD
HD DVD / Blu-ray
International DVDs
Theatrical
Video Games

Features
Collector Series DVDs
Easter Egg Database
Interviews
DVD Talk Radio
Feature Articles

Columns
Anime Talk
DVD Stalk
DVD Savant
High-Def Revolution
Silent DVD

discussion forum
DVD Talk Forum
Resources
DVD Price Search
Customer Service #'s
RCE Info
Links

DVDTalk Info
Review Staff
About DVD Talk
Advertise
Newsletter Subscribe
Join DVD Talk Forum
DVD Talk Feeds


Sponsored Links
Search: For:
Reviews » Blu-ray Reviews » Furious 7 (Blu-ray)
Furious 7 (Blu-ray)
Universal // PG-13 // September 15, 2015 // Region A
List Price: $34.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by William Harrison | posted September 6, 2015 | E-mail the Author
Buy from Amazon.com
C O N T E N T
V I D E O
A U D I O
E X T R A S
R E P L A Y
A D V I C E
Highly Recommended
E - M A I L
this review to a friend
P R I N T
Printer Friendly

THE FILM:

Click an image to view Blu-ray screenshot with 1080p resolution.

In my review of Fast & Furious 6, I noted that it was hard to objectively review that film so soon after star Paul Walker's November 2013 death. I cannot imagine the pain his co-stars - by all accounts a tightknit group - felt after restarting the halted production on Furious 7 months later. Under the guidance of James Wan, who steps away from the horror genre here, the cast constructs the largest scale film of the series. Wan and company admirably pays tribute to Walker throughout, and both Jason Statham and Kurt Russell join the cast. I never expected The Fast and the Furious to launch a billion-dollar franchise, and, perhaps most surprising, is that character building is now at the forefront of these films. Furious 7 is arguably light on new story, but this fan-pleasing labor of love ties together the threads of previous films into a fittingly conclusive resolution.

Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel), Brian O'Conner (Walker), Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), Mia (Jordana Brewster), Roman (Tyrese Gibson), Tej (Ludacris), and Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) return to Los Angeles after shutting down criminal Owen Shaw's (Luke Evans) operation in London. Furious 6 teased a return to Han's (Sung Kang) fiery death from The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, which is revealed to be the work of Deckard Shaw (Statham), who is avenging his younger brother. The elder Shaw kills Han before turning his sights on Dominic, Brian and Mia, who barely escape a bomb planted at their home. Dominic and Brian begin tracking Shaw, and covert ops leader Mr. Nobody (Russell) offers to help if the team joins in the search for the God's Eye, a computer program that hijacks digital devices to track down anyone on the planet.

Diesel asked Furious fans who they'd like to see join the series as a villain. The overwhelming response was Jason Statham, who proves himself a good choice. Statham is a rugged brawler, and the film introduces him by showing the comedic level of destruction left in his wake when he visits Owen in the hospital. In a series filled with slick, European villains, Statham's Shaw is the first antagonist that actually seems a challenge for Diesel's Toretto. If you ask me, there can never be too much Kurt Russell, who is also a welcome addition. You're not alone if you are not quite sure what to make of the character, and Russell plays Mr. Nobody with all the drive and exhaustion of a career agent. In casting Statham and Russell, Wan tickles the fancy of fans nostalgic for action heroes young and old(er).

The hunt for the God's Eye is our heroes' main task, but Shaw shows up at every turn to complicate matters. There are some ridiculous action sequences - cars are flung from airplanes, a drone attacks in downtown L.A. - and Diesel and Statham square off on multiple occasions. Other new additions to the series include Nathalie Emmanuel as Ramsey, the creator of the God's Eye; UFC fighter Ronda Rousey, who plays a deadly bodyguard; and Thai martial arts star Tony Jaa. Furious 7 briefly returns to Tokyo, too, complete with a familiar DJ Shadow track and brief appearances from Lucas Black, Bow Wow and Nathalie Kelley. The series timeline is now crystal clear.

If Furious 7 suffers for anything it is narrative. There are signs of strain here, particularly with Walker's character. The actor shot a portion of his scenes before his death, and Wan is fairly successful at filling in the gaps with alternate footage and some assistance from Walker's brothers, Caleb and Cody. Brian is noticeably absent from a number of scenes, but the coda with his character is extremely well done. I think I had something in my eye. Letty's character also comes full circle, and her backstory and memory loss is further explained. Leave it to Rob Cohen to kick-start the most pro-family-values series formally about street racing in history.

I am sure a Furious 8 is on the horizon. Whether this cast returns or the screen is dominated by new additions, Furious 7 serves as a nice conclusion to this narrative chapter. You either love The Fast and the Furious or you do not. Wan and company shot this film for the fans, and it delivers in spades. Most of these characters have been a part of my life for fourteen years. How many other film series can say that? Polished and expansive, Furious 7 is a family reunion worth attending.

THE BLU-RAY:

PICTURE:

No surprises here: Furious 7 looks great in high definition. The 2.40:1/1080p/AVC-encoded transfer, which comes from a mix of digital and Super 35 stock, is sharp, textured, film-like and natural. Wan uses a cool, desaturated color palette, but skin tones appear natural. The perfectly saturated candy-coat colors of the exotic cars sparkle, and black levels are strong. Close-ups reveal intimate facial details, and wide shots are crisp and miles-deep. Fast pans are without blur, and I did not notice any digital noise or banding.

SOUND:

The 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack replicates the theatrical experience with tremendous power. This immersive mix makes frequent use of the surround speakers. Engines roar across the rear sound field, explosions rock the subwoofer and directional dialogue is frequent. Ambient effects are nuanced and effective, and action effects are focused and balanced appropriately with dialogue and score. The music selections are deep and enveloping, and dialogue is without distortion. Spanish and French 5.1 DTS dubs are included, as are English SDH, French and Spanish subtitles.

PACKAGING AND EXTRAS:

This two-disc "combo pack" includes the Blu-ray, a DVD copy and codes to redeem both iTunes and UltraViolet HD digital copies. The discs sport Universal's generic blue labels and are packed in a standard Blu-ray case. A holofoil slipcover wraps the case. The Blu-ray includes both the theatrical cut (2:17:26) and a barely-different extended cut (2:19:54). The extras are not as extensive as I might have liked, but there is some nice behind-the-scenes footage available:

  • Deleted Scenes (5:59 total/HD) - Several of these deleted scenes flesh out Letty's search for the truth about her memory loss.
  • Talking Fast (31:47/HD) - James Wan shepherds this making-of, which focuses on several key action sequences and includes cast interviews.
  • Back to the Starting Line (12:11/HD) - This piece focuses on the entire series and overarching narrative, and is notably the only mention of Walker's sudden death.
  • Flying Cars (5:42/HD) - See how the filmmakers created the action scene with parachuting cars.
  • Snatch and Grab (7:31/HD) - This focuses on the extended bus chase that follows the air drop.
  • Tower Jumps (6:53/HD) - One of the film's most ridiculous sequences involves another flying car. See how it was made.
  • Inside the Fight (11:03 total/HD) - These are four short featurettes about the physical fights in the film, with interviews from Rousey, Rodriguez, Diesel and others.
  • The Cars of Furious (10:42/HD) - This series is still about cars, folks. See some of the badass rides in the film here.
  • Race Wars (6:34/HD) - Race Wars plays an integral part in the first film, so the filmmakers decided to re-visit the festival in Furious 7.
  • "See You Again" Music Video from Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth (4:05/HD).
  • Making the Fast & Furious Supercharged Ride (8:15/HD) - This is an extended promotional video for the new Universal Studios attraction.

FINAL THOUGHTS:

The seventh film in the Fast and the Furious series is the largest in scale; an epic love letter to the fans that have supported the cast since the original landed in theaters in 2001. Furious 7 is also a tribute to Paul Walker, and director James Wan crafts an exciting action thrill ride with many call-backs to previous films. Whether you join the Fast family this go-round is up to you. Highly Recommended.


Additional screenshots:

William lives in Burlington, North Carolina, and looks forward to a Friday-afternoon matinee.

Find the lowest price for 'Furious 7 (Blu-ray)'
Popular Reviews
1. Barry Lyndon
2. My Neighbor Totoro (GKIDS Release)
3. The Beguiled
4. Into The Night: Collector's Edition
5. The Old Dark House
6. Dreamgirls: Director's Extended Edition
7. Avanti!
8. Rawhead Rex
9. The Ghoul
10. Children Of The Corn


Sponsored Links
DVD Blowouts
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
Alien [Blu-ray]
Buy: $19.99 $9.99
8.
9.
10.
Sponsored Links
Release List Reviews Shop Newsletter Forum DVD Giveaways Blu-Ray Advertise
Copyright 2017 All Rights Reserved. Legal Info, Privacy Policy, Terms of Use