This month marks the 15th anniversary of the release of The Fast and the Furious - the film which not only spawned a franchise that’s now seven movies deep and counting, but also a movie that had a significant impact on car culture around the world.
Earlier generations had American Graffiti and Vanishing Point, but The Fast and the Furious was the car movie for the 21st century.
To commemorate the milestone, Universal is bringing the original film back to theaters for one day only on June 22nd, and I’m sure the seats will be filled with people wanting to relive their experiences, along with those who missed out seeing it on the big screen the first time around.
So with that in mind, I thought it would be fun to share some our own memories of The Fast and the Furious. I’d only had my license for a few months when the movie came out in 2001, and I distinctly remember driving my ’73 Plymouth Duster to the theater with a friend. I recall thinking the movie was a little cheesy, but a pretty fun watch overall. And as exaggerated as it was, compared to the sequels that came later the original could almost be considered a documentary in its plot and realism.
But what I remember more than anything is the craziness in the movie theater parking lot once the film had finished. I’ll never forget the image of one guy unlocking his early-’90s Honda Accord, starting it up and then mashing the gas pedal with his foot while still standing outside car; the sound of its cold air intake and fart-can exhaust filling the air. My buddy and I still laugh about it to this day. In response, I may or may not have channeled my inner Toretto with a lame burnout (no wheelie unfortunately) in my 318-powered Duster. Things were never going to be the same.
The recent Fast and Furious franchise films have become over-the-top action flicks with an automotive theme, but the first movie was something of a revelation – for better or worse. Or at least that’s how it felt to a teenager with a car back in 2001.
What about you guys?