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The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift(2006)
Sean Boswell is an outsider who attempts to define himself as a hot-headed, underdog street racer. Although racing provides a temporary escape from an unhappy home and the superficial world around him, it has also made Sean unpopular with the local authorities. To avoid jail time, Sean is sent to live with his gruff, estranged father, a career military-man stationed in Tokyo. Now officially a gaijin (outsider), Sean feels even more shut out in a land of foreign customs and codes of honor. But it doesn't take long for him to find some action when a fellow American buddy, Twinkie, introduces him to the underground world of drift racing. Sean's simple drag racing gets replaced by a rubber-burning, automotive art form with an exhilarating balance of speeding and gliding through a heart-stopping course of hairpin turns and switchbacks. On his first time out drifting, Sean unknowingly takes on D.K., the "Drift King," a local champ with ties to the Japanese crime machine Yakuza. Sean's loss comes at a high price tag when he's forced to work off the debt under the thumb of ex-pat, Han. Han soon welcomes Sean into this family of misfits and introduces him to the real principles of drifting. But when Sean falls for D.K.'s girlfriend, Neela, an explosive series of events is set into motion, climaxing with a high stakes face off.
For more about The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift and the The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift Blu-ray release, see the The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift Blu-ray Review published by Martin Liebman on July 22, 2009 where this Blu-ray release scored 4.0 out of 5.
Starring: Lucas Black, Damien Marzett, Trula M. Marcus, Zachery Ty Bryan, Brandon Brendel, Daniel Booko
Director: Justin Lin
» See full cast & crew
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift Blu-ray Review
Tokyo's never looked so good.
Reviewed by Martin Liebman, July 22, 2009
You didn't just play with fire, you soaked the matches in gasoline.
It's by the time the third picture in a franchise rolls around that the threat of fatigue and, potentially even more destructive, the probability that it is in fact circling the drain become all-too-real concerns. Not every movie franchise need worry, though, particularly those structured around a trilogy and leaving open ends at the conclusion of previous films that make for logical starting points. For a franchise like The Fast and the Furious, however, where there's no real story to continue, filmmakers need develop something that retains the previous films' core values but at the same time putting a radically new spin on them in order to guarantee a profit at the box office and, more importantly, leave audiences craving yet another entry, whether connected to the world created here or in the previous pictures. Enter the world of "drifting" and the Land of the Rising Sun. Introducing the world to a unique style of racing (just watch the movie) and setting it halfway around the world where the culture may be different but the burning desire to win remains the same, The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift delivers exactly the sort of film that the franchise needed. It's not all that unique but its style, pacing, and story fit the bill and capture the essence of "fast" and "furious" precisely.
Sean Boswell (Lucas Black, Sling Blade) is an American with a knack for driving fast and getting in trouble. When he races a cocky football player, he is faced with his third strike and left with only two choices: juvenile detention or a fresh start in Tokyo with his father. No sooner does Sean arrive in the Land of the Rising Sun than he meets another American, Twinkie (Bow Wow), who is connected to Tokyo's underground racing scene. Sean can't stay out of trouble, and when he approaches Neela (Nathalie Kelley), he finds himself in a "drifting" race with D.K. (Brian Tee), the best there is at the sport, nephew of a Yakuza crime boss, and Neela's boyfriend. Sean loses the race and is humiliated, but his talent and heart are recognized by one of D.K.'s partners, Han (Sung Kang), who befriends the American and teaches him the art of the drift. When Sean's relationship with D.K. worsens and the Japanese Mafia becomes involved in the dispute, Sean must embrace the new style of racing if he is to defend his honor, his new friends, and his life.
This is a Fast and Furious film, no doubt about it. While it is practically unconnected to the first two, save for a surprise cameo appearance, it easily delivers the best racing and stunts of the trio. They're faster, more dangerous, and more exhilarating, all without seeming too over-the-top, one of the second film's downfalls. It puts a completely new spin on the series, moving the action halfway around the world and introducing a new style of racing while retaining a theme similar to that of the first films, placing the hero in the midst of danger at the hands of a ruthless criminal organization. The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift features well-developed characters, including a protagonist and antagonist that play well off of one another. Both Lucas Black and Brian Tee play their parts with bravado; they make for a fine pairing of hero and villain, each confrontation between the two playing as tense and exciting. The film's primary downfall lies in its predictability; it's not only the fact that the hero is very likely to win the day, but much of the action leading up to the finale telegraphs the ending quite blatantly. No matter, though, because Tokyo Drift is a fun, loud, and exhilarating movie that, like The Fast and the Furious, manages to squeeze an interesting plot and well-developed characters in the midst of a movie that otherwise may have been just another flick with a loose structure that does nothing but move it from one race scene to the next. It's not a particularly great movie compared to the classics if cinema, but for the genre and the Fast and the Furious series, this one's a winner.
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift Blu-ray, Video Quality
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift arrives on Blu-ray with a pristine 1080p transfer framed inside a 2.35:1 window. This is an incredibly colorful film. The purple jerseys of the American football players and the red of the Dodge Viper as seen at the beginning of the film both sparkle. The race through the housing development looks incredible, with all the dust, unfinished houses, random building equipment, and heavy machinery appearing crisp and nicely detailed, even from a distance or in a blur. Of course, the image only picks up once it reaches the bright lights of Tokyo. Colors remain bold and pleasing to the eye, detail is natural, flesh tones are accurate, and blacks are deep. The cars positively sparkle, the sheen of their glossy paint having that straight-out-of-the-showroom glow, until the dangerous world of drifting takes its toll on the bodies. Film grain is present but noticed only minimally at normal viewing distances. The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift is another first-class transfer from Universal.
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift Blu-ray, Audio Quality
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift skids onto Blu-ray with a full-throttle DTS-HD MA 5.1 lossless soundtrack. From the beats of the opening music onward, the track never disappoints. It's spacious, crisp, and aggressive, but not overly so. It's a natural, engulfing presentation that ranks with the best of the best the format currently has to offer. The rumbling of the engines in the first Tokyo-based race positively devastate the listening area, the bass packing an incredible wallop that shakes the entire room. The track often creates a wholly immersive 360-degree sound field, making sure to utilize every square inch of each speaker. This is a track that must be heard to be truly experienced. With perfect dialogue reproduction, this is easily the best of a trio of fantastic soundtracks and one of the finest currently available on Blu-ray.
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift also comes packed with extras. First is a commentary track with Director Justin Lin. His track is fairly basic in presentation, covering all the expected bases and delivering his comments with a confident delivery and an easygoing style. He discusses plenty of interesting anecdotes about shooting in Tokyo, the quality of the cast, and more. Fans will enjoy this track. This disc also offers four distinct U-Control features. Storyboards allows viewers to see numerous hand-drawn storyboards that were used to plan many of the scenes. GPS shows the progression of several races and chases on a mock-up handheld navigation system. Tech Specs allows viewers to learn more about the cars used in the film. Finally, Picture in Picture is a standard behind-the-scenes feature that offers plenty of cast and crew interviews and footage from the set, both of which delve into the themes of the story and the making of the film.
Making of the 'Fast' Franchise (1080i, 17:02) is a retrospective look back at the first three films of the series with interview clips of cast and crew from each film and behind-the-scenes footage from the entire trilogy, concluding with a look at the fourth film. Drift: A Sideways Craze (1080i, 1:00:00) takes an extended and in-depth look at the world of drifting. Custom-Made Drifter is an interactive feature where users may build their own car, choosing a color, wheel style, and body highlight and then see the finished product in a scene from the movie. Next up are a series of eleven deleted scenes (480p, 18:16) with optional commentary from Director Justin Lin. Drifting School (480p, 7:35) features the stars of the film learning the art of the drift. Cast Cam (480p, 4:19) features some amateur behind-the-scenes footage from the set. The Big Breakdown: Han's Last Ride (480p, 8:26) examines the making of the film's most intense chase sequence. Tricked Out to Drift (480p, 11:00) looks at some of the cars and their modifications for use in various scenes of the film.
Moving on, Welcome to Drifting (480p, 6:17) further explores the sport of drifting and how it fits in with the theme of the movie. The Real Drift King (480p, 3:38) looks at the skill and accomplishments of renowned drifter Keiichi Tsuchiya. The Japanese Way (480p, 9:45) looks at shooting the film in Tokyo. Also included are two music videos -- Conteo by Don Omar (480p, 3:33) and Round Round by Far*East Movement (480p, 4:06) -- as well as an advertisement for the film's soundtrack (480p, 0:17). This disc is also BD-Live (Blu-ray profile 2.0) enabled and D-Box ready. Also included on disc two is a digital copy of the film. The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift looks fine on the iPod, but offers noticeable blocking. It does features a solid audio presentation that is suitable for the style of presentation but certainly nothing to become excited about.
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift delivers a fun and exciting ride through the streets of Tokyo, the world of drifting, and the competitive edge that knows no borders. A very well-crafted but not a terribly deep or meaningful movie, Tokyo Drift should satiate the appetite for quality entertainment that asks only that brains be checked at the door. Universal's Blu-ray release delivers the finest visual and audio presentations of any film in the entire series, both of reference-quality and a pleasure to behold. Fans will also enjoy the wealth of bonus materials Universal has included. Easily recommended to fans of the film.
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The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift Blu-ray, News and Updates
• The Fast and the Furious Blu-ray Singles Get Detailed - June 4, 2009
Universal Studios Home Entertainment has announced that they will bring 'The Fast and the Furious', '2 Fast 2 Furious', and 'The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift' to Blu-ray on July 28th, day-and-date with the Blu-ray release of 'Fast & Furious'. Originally only ...
• Universal Details Fast & Furious Blu-ray - May 18, 2009
In an announcement to retailers, Universal Studios Home Entertainment has disclosed that they will release 'Fast & Furious' on Blu-ray on July 28, day-and-date with the DVD. This will be a two-disc special edition with a digital copy included. The film will ...
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