Directed by Justin Lin. Produced by Neal H. Moritz, Vin Diesel, and Clayton Townsend. Written by Chris Morgan. Release date: May 24, 2013.
The hook of Furious 6 was seeing if Letty was really alive, and in what condition. It started right after Fast Five, and leads directly into Furious Seven - as such, it comes across as the second movie in a new trilogy. Fast Five didn't have a big hook, while Furious Seven looks like it could legitimately conclude the series. It gives us a relatively fun story, and by far the most humor in the series, but still feels like it's just biding time as a result. Still, some of its developments are interesting, and it provides us even more previous players turning up again.
Dominic "Dom" Toretto (Vin Diesel): The now-retired leader of a group of criminals who drive cars really well. Living with Elena. Has to re-form his team after Luke Hobbs convinces him to help take down Owen Shaw, who has Letty, his former girlfriend whom he was told died, working for him.
Brian O'Conner (Paul Walker): A former LAPD detective, FBI agent, and member of Dom's crew. He lives with Dom's sister, Mia, and their son, Jack.
Mia Toretto (Jordana Brewster): Dom's sister. Now lives, and has a child, with Brian.
Han Seoul-Oh (Sung Kang): Still alive, despite being killed off three movies earlier in Tokyo Drift. He and Gisele now live together in Hong Kong.
Gisele (Gal Gadot): A former Mossad agent, worked for the villain in Fast & Furious, and joined Dom's crew in Fast Five. She now lives with Han in Hong Kong.
Letty Ortiz (Michelle Rodriguez): A former member of Dom's crew. Killed off in Fast & Furious. She now works for Owen Shaw, the villain of Furious 6.
Owen Shaw (Luke Evans): Furious 6's villain. A former British Special Forces soldier with an axe to grind.
Roman Pearce (Tyrese Gibson): The co-lead of 2 Fast 2 Furious. Brian's childhood friend who served time for crimes the two of them committed, but is now a free man after helping Brian take down a drug lord in the second film. A member of Dom's crew, and a major character in both this and Fast Five.
Tej Parker (Chris "Ludacris" Bridges): A former street racer who previously appeared in 2 Fast 2 Furious. He becomes a member of Dom's crew in Fast Five and returns for Furious 6.
Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson): A DSS agent and bounty hunter hired in Fast Five to take out Dom's crew. Dom earned his respect and was allowed to go free. Wants to take down Owen Shaw, and offers Dom and his crew pardons for their crimes if they aid him in doing so.
Elena Neves (Elsa Pataky): A Rio police officer who was hired by Hobbs to take out Dom. Dom's love interest, she now lives with him.
Arturo Braga (John Ortiz): Fast & Furious' villain. He's a drug lord whose capture happened because of Dom and Brian. He's currently in prison.
Ben Stasiak (Shea Whigham): An FBI agent with whom Brian was at odds in Fast & Furious. He reappears in Furious 6 to help out.
Furious 6 opens with an inconsequential car race followed by the birth of Brian and Mia's child. Meanwhile, Hobbs is hunting a criminal by the name of Owen Shaw, who thankfully isn't a drug lord. Hobbs finds Dom, now living with Elena. Hobbs offers Dom and his crew full pardons if they'll help him catch Shaw, who is employing Letty, Dom's old girlfriend whom we were told was dead.
Dom's crew teams up with Hobbs to take down Owen Shaw before he builds a magical MacGuffin worth billions of dollars. Shaw has his own team - many of whom are parallels to Dom's - and they act as a formidable opponent. Letty, who is currently amnesic, is a part of this team. She shoots at Dom in their first encounter. "You don't turn your back on family."
While looking for information, it's discovered that Shaw has ties to Arturo Braga. Brian gets arrested in order to talk with Braga, and then uses his FBI ties - particularly Stasiak - to get free. Meanwhile, Dom and Letty have a street race, after which Dom gives Letty back her necklace, hoping it will remind her of the past.
The team tries to take out Shaw while his team attempts to hijack a convoy carrying a computer chip. They capture Shaw, but he reveals that he's captured Mia, so they let him go. Letty stays with Dom, as she doesn't agree with the reckless approach Shaw had during this sequence, and because Dom saved her life. The crew then has to stop Shaw from escaping on an airplane; Gisele is killed in the process, as she sacrifices herself to save Han. But, eventually, Shaw is killed, Mia is saved, and the computer chip is secured.
Dom and the rest of the crew are allowed to return to America, and do so. They have a family dinner, reminding us of when a similar dinner happened in the first film. Letty still doesn't remember anything, but notes that it feels right - like home. Elena goes to work with Hobbs, accepting that she's better off working as a cop, and Dom's better off with his family.
In a mid-credits scene, we finally get to see the man who killed Han in Tokyo Drift: Deckard Shaw. He's out for revenge, thus setting up Furious Seven.
Is It Any Good?
Like Fast Five before it, Furious 6 aimed to be more than just a movie about car racing. As such, you have an almost James Bond-esque villain, a plot whose implications involve the potential demise of millions of people, and lots of scenes where cars are just a tool, not the point. These movies have more mainstream appeal as a result, but does it make them better? Not really. The characters are relatively shallow - especially given that some of them have now appeared in five films - and the plot is generic, just with cars thrown in. Furious 6 does have a few strong dramatic moments, plays with the "family is important" theme in new ways, and has the most humor of the series up to its release. The two final action scenes are also great. Is it a fantastic movie? No, but it's at least somewhat fun.