F9 Secretly Set Up Fast & Furious 10 Returning To Its Roots
Despite its ridiculous action, F9 still retained some of the essence of the original The Fast and the Furious, setting up Fast X to become more faithful to its roots. Every sequel in the Fast & Furious franchise has notably upped the ante. The first movie focused on street racing, but by Fast 5, Dom and his crew were performing full-blown heists. In Fast & Furious 7, they were driving cars through skyscrapers, and in The Fate of the Furious, they saved the world from a nuclear catastrophe. But as unlikely as it sounds, Fast X can return to the franchise’s roots.
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Released exactly 20 years after the first movie, F9 continued to raise the stakes with stunts that included rope-swinging cars, a landmine-field chase, and a rocket car. The global conspiracies and near-superhuman antiheroes that Dom and company have had to face are also a far cry from the street races of the first film, which centered solely on one police officer, Paul Walker’s Brian O’Conner, in pursuit of one street racer, Vin Diesel’s Dominic Toretto. While these elements seem to be long gone in F9, the ninth installment dropped some hints that the franchise hasn’t lost all its initial essence.
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F9 included references to previous Fast & Furious movies. Dom and Jakob’s race depicted in flashbacks ends in Dom’s favor because he hits the NOS only at the very end — a method that earns him a victory in the first race between him and Brian in 2001’s The Fast and the Furious. This sequence is the closest to encapsulating the tone and scope of the original movie, not only in F9 but in all of the sequels since 2009’s Fast & Furious. Another Easter egg in F9 is the “10-second car” Dom gives Jakob so he can escape, which mirrors the getaway car Brian gives Dom at the end of The Fast and the Furious. Beyond mere references, these callbacks keep the spirit of the original movie alive, allowing Fast X and its sequel to wrap up the franchise with a love letter to its origins.
Dom still cares about the memories he has with Brian, and for him, driving is more than just a way to escape from bullets and explosions. Dom and his crew can go to space and stop worldwide threats, but if the family cookout at the end of F9 is anything to go by, they can’t forget where it all started. The Fast & Furious franchise hasn’t crossed the line to become pure sci-fi yet. It still honors other, more grounded parts of the franchise, with the return of Tokyo Drift characters such as Sean Boswell, Twinkie, and Earl, as well as younger versions of Jesse, Leo, and Santos. If Fast X and Fast & Furious 11 aim to conclude the franchise with a heartfelt bookend, they could tell a story that’s a higher-stakes version of the original movie’s plot.
The race between Dom and Jakob in F9’s flashbacks is perfect proof that the Fast and Furious movies can still tell street racing stories that pack a punch. Recently, franchises like Star Wars, Jurassic Park, and the MCU have taken the time to honor their roots. The Fast & Furious franchise would contribute to this trend with a street racing blockbuster released in 2023. Fast X will undoubtedly invest its huge budget in unprecedented spectacle, but that doesn’t mean it has to stray further away than previous installments already have.
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