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Justin Lin’s 9 Best Movies, Ranked By IMDb

Director Justin Lin has returned to the Fast and Furious series with F9 after leaving it safe and sound with the sixth installment. Lin is best known for turning the street racing series into a high-octane globe-trotting adventure, as he has been at the helm of five of the action movies.

RELATED: Every Fast & The Furious Movie, Ranked By Letterboxd
But Fast and Furious isn’t all the filmmaker is known for, as Lin has got an equal amount of indie darlings and blockbuster movies under his belt. The director was first noticed in the industry for his beloved low-budget crime drama Better Luck Tomorrow, and he has gone on to direct one of the most exciting Star Trek movies.

F9 (2021) – 5.2

Dom and Jakob have a heated argument in F9

The Fast and Furious series has gotten more over-the-top with each consecutive movie, as the stunts are increasingly outrageous and the set pieces have gone from trucks to planes. But with F9, it was a case of blowing up the balloon so much that it popped. Audiences felt that the new entry in the series was too unbelievable, which is saying a lot for the Fast franchise.
On top of that, though the fan-favorite character Han returned, there was no reasonable or satisfying explanation for how he survived his car crash. However, there’s still a lot about F9 that fans loved, including Rome and Tej’s love/hate relationship and Ramsey’s increased screentime.

Annapolis (2006) – 5.9

James Franco and Tyrese Gibson in Annapolis

Annapolis follows a man’s attempt to become a member of the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, while, at the same time, rising through the ranks of the Academy’s amateur boxing league. The movie is the first of two films directed by Justin Lin in 2009, (which is a work ethic and a rate at which few other filmmakers can compete with).
RELATED: 10 Fast & Furious Characters That Deserve Their Own Spin-Off Movie
However, the quality isn’t quite on the scale of Lin’s other movies in this era, and it was criticized for its cliches and stale acting. The movie does feature another Fast and Furious alum, Tyrese Gibson, who gives a rare dramatic performance, and it’s actually one of the best parts of the movie.

Finishing The Game (2007) – 6.0

Stands ins for Bruce Lee wear Lee’s iconic outfit in Finishing The Game

It’s hard to stick the landing with mockumentaries, as it’s such a niche genre full of films that are often about even more niche topics, and Finishing the Game is no different. The movie is about Bruce Lee’s final film, Game of Death, as it was unfinished at the time of his death, and the mockumentary satirizes the production of the movie.
Finishing the Game is an interesting telling of an untold story, but for the most part, it’s full of cliched comedy timing and sight gags. It also addresses the racism the Asian community faces in Hollywood and the lack of opportunities available, which is something that Lin has been vocal about throughout his whole career.

The Fast And The Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006) – 6.0

Seand and Takashi confront each other in Fast and Furious Tokyo Drift

Justin Lin took the reigns on the Fast and Furious series in 2006, and he is to thank for the high-octane action franchise that it has become. But before the series started to take its action shape with Fast & Furious, Lin played into the franchise’s playful street-racing origins with The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift.
The movie is almost solely based on street racing, and it’s full of souped-up import cars whizzing around Tokyo. It’s visually stunning, but audiences believed that it was generally all style and no substance. However, Tokyo Drift is full of great scenes, and it introduced some of the best characters of the series, including Han, who returned in F9.

Fast & Furious (2009) – 6.6

Dom and Brian look outside of their car in Fast Five

Fast & Furious is the first movie that serialized the series, as it continued Brian and Dom’s saga. It should have been better considering that it reunited Brian and Dom for the first time since the original movie, but the story was criticized for being too convoluted. Still, many fans consider it the best movie in the franchise since the original in 2001.
The movie increased the stakes and built on the emotional tension that the previous installments had lacked in the past two entries, reminding audiences of how much chemistry Paul Walker and Vin Diesel have together. With Fast & Furious, the series was finally given the “Coppola approach” that Diesel wanted with 2 Fast 2 Furious.

Star Trek Beyond (2016) – 7.0

Bones carries an injured Spock in Star Trek Beyond

With the direction that the reboot series of Star Trek was going in, Justin Lin was the perfect choice to replace J.J. Abrams, who was busy directing Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
RELATED: 10 Plot Holes From The Fast And Furious Movies That Make No Sense Whatsoever
Abrams’ Star Trek movies were more action than sci-fi, and after turning Fast and Furious into a Mission: Impossible-esq action series, the director delved even deeper into giant set pieces with Star Trek Beyond. The movie isn’t as highly regarded as its two predecessors, as the blockbuster action is considered incoherent and too frenetic. But it’s a solid entry into the series, as it still balances the humor and adventure just as Star Trek and Star Trek Into Darkness.

Better Luck Tomorrow (2002) – 7.0

Parry and friends sit against wall in Better Luck Tomorrow

In 2002, Justin Lin directed a much more compelling movie about overachievers who turn to a life of crime. Better Luck Tomorrow is the movie that put Justin Lin on the map. It’s an expertly crafted crime drama, and it was even awarded a perfect score from non-other than Roger Ebert.
The movie is why Universal hired Lin for Tokyo Drift, and it makes sense, as the street racing movie follows bored teenagers committing petty crimes and finding comfort in material excess, just like Better Luck Tomorrow. And technically, Better Luck Tomorrow is part of the Fast and Furious universe, as the character of Han is a main character in the 2002 movie.

Fast & Furious 6 (2013) – 7.0

Letty standing on the hood of a moving car in Fast & Furious

Fast & Furious 6 upped the ante when it came to huge set pieces in the blockbuster franchise. That almost seemed like an impossible feat, as the fifth movie saw Dom’s crew jump out of a moving train and destroy the whole of Rio. However, even though some Redditors think Fast & Furious 6 is forgettable, the movie couldn’t be more thrilling, as the final act sees the crew literally blow up a plane.
At this point in the series, Fast and Furious was in the fifth gear of world-building, and one of the best examples of that is Owen Shaw. The movie introduced a villain that had a personality, as actor Luke Evans brought a sense of gravitas to Shaw, which hadn’t been seen in a Fast movie since Carter Verone in 2 Fast 2 Furious.

Fast Five (2011) – 7.3

Dom and Brian dragging large metal vault with their cars in Fast Five

Fast Five changed the series in a ton of ways. The movie became not only the most financially successful movie in the series at the time, but it also became the most beloved film of the franchise still to this day. That was all down to the direction and casting decisions of Justin Lin. With Lin at the helm, he turned the series into an Ocean’s Eleven-type heist franchise.
Every fan-favorite character from each of the previous movies returned, such as Tej and Rome from 2 Fast, Han from Tokyo Drift, and Mia from the original. It was like a greatest hits movie for the Fast series. But the best improvement of all was the introduction of Luke Hobbs, who injected equal amounts of testosterone and humor in the series, the latter of which was much needed after the solemn fourth movie.
NEXT: The Fast & The Furious 10 Actors You Forgot Were In The Hit Franchise

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Dwayne Johnson & Vin Diesel’s Fast & Furious Feud Addressed By John Cena

Summary

John Cena acknowledges that he’s heard rumors about the Dwayne Johnson and Vin Diesel feud in the
Fast & Furious
franchise.
Cena calls them both ”
alpha
” actors, suggesting that there’s only room on set for one of those personality types.
Johnson’s return to the franchise in
Fast X
suggests his feud with Diesel is over, but the two actors have yet to actually share the screen together again.

Fast & Furious franchise star John Cena shares his thoughts on the infamous Vin Diesel and Dwayne Johnson feud. After the release of the first movie in 2001, the popular action franchise just recently released its tenth installment with the poorly-reviewed Fast X. While the Fast & Furious franchise has been massively commercially successful, it hasn’t always been smooth sailing behind the scenes, with Dominic Toretto actor Diesel and Luke Hobbs actor Johnson reportedly butting heads during production on several installments, with the feud going viral in 2016.

During a recent interview with Dax Shepherd on the Armchair Expert podcast, Cena, who recently returned as Jakob as part of the Fast X cast, weighs in on his experience with the Diesel and Johnson feud. While much of the feud seemingly took place before Cena joined the franchise in F9: The Fast Saga, the actor seemingly doesn’t have a hard time believing that there was friction between the two costars. Check out his comments below:

“There’s certainly rumors about that. I can’t deny that. You have two very alpha, driven people. You get two, there can only be one.
“Man, you gotta remember I got dropped into a locker room where [we have] generational vets. ‘What’d your dad do?’ ‘Wrestle.’ ‘What’d your granddad do?’ ‘Wrestle.’ I’ve been in that environment; know the room and just kind of adapt to what’s going on.
“I’m being invited into someone’s home, into someone’s family. And regardless of how they look physically in comparison to another human being, this is one IP that has had nine installments and it’s an action movie — that’s rarefied air. At the very least, there has to be respect for that.
“I’m not trying to get the sandbox. That’s not my thing. I’m grateful for what you’ve given me, I just want to be be the best firetruck I can.”

dwayne-johnson-vin-diesel-feud-hurt-fast-furious

Related 4 Ways The Rock & Vin Diesel’s Feud Hurt Fast & Furious The ongoing feud between Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Vin Diesel has hurt the Fast and Furious franchise in a number of different ways.

Vin Diesel & Dwayne Johnson’s Feud Seems To Be Over Now
But Will They Actually Appear Together Again On Screen?
Vin Diesel as Dom and Dwayne Johnson as Hobbs looking over each other's shoulders in Fast and Furious 6

A now-deleted social media post from Johnson in 2016 is what really kicked things off regarding his apparent feud with Diesel. In the post, Johnson referred to un-named Fast & Furious costars as “chicken sh*t” and “candy asses,” criticizing the work ethic of some on set. The feud has had its ups and downs since then, with Tyrese Gibson even getting involved at one point. Some years later, Diesel seemingly attempted to bury the hatchet by putting out a public plea for Johnson to return as Hobbs, but Johnson very pointedly shut the idea down.

Despite this, however, Johnson did return for a cameo during the Fast X post-credits scene last year. Not long afterward, it was confirmed that Johnson would star in his own Hobbs-focused film before the planned release of Fast & Furious 11, which will seemingly serve as the franchise finale. While it doesn’t sound like Diesel will be appearing in Johnson’s spinoff, Hobbs is now poised to play a role in the eleventh film.

Fast X
is currently available to stream on Prime Video.

Johnson does appear in the latest film, but he notably doesn’t share the screen with Diesel or any other cast members. If he does play a more prominent role in Fast & Furious 11, this will evidently require more collaboration, potentially opening the door for their larger-than-life personalities to clash once more. It remains to be seen whether Diesel and Johnson will share the screen together in the final Fast & Furious movie, but Cena’s latest comments suggest tension between the two “alpha” stars will be hard to avoid.

Source: Armchair Expert

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Vin Diesel May Have Spoiled Fast & Furious 11’s Ending With $2.7 Billion Movie Comparison

Summary

Vin Diesel already compared
Fast and Furious 11
to
Avengers: Endgame
.
It seems likely, therefore, that Dom will die just as Tony Stark did.
If Fast and Furious 11 kills off Dom, it will perfectly flip Fast X’s ending, echoing Avengers: Endgame’s impactful sacrifice.

Vin Diesel has already hinted that Dom will die in Fast and Furious 11 by comparing it to a $2.7 billion movie from another major franchise. The car-centered Fast and Furious movies began in 2001, and the franchise has experienced tremendous growth since then, releasing ten movies in the main series and the Hobbs & Shaw spinoff. The eleventh, and supposedly final, installment of the Fast and Furious franchise is slated to release on April 4, 2025, and is directed by Louis Leterrier.

While Fast X included a number of big character deaths, the fates of several others remain unknown. Antagonist Dante Reyes (Jason Momoa) is motivated by a desire to inflict suffering upon Dom (Vin Diesel) and ultimately resorts to eliminating those closest to him. In the Fast X cliffhanger ending, Dom appeared doomed as he drove into Dante’s explosive trap. The fact that Fast and Furious 11 is happening suggests Dom will survive, but there is good reason to believe Vin Diesel’s protagonist will meet his end in the upcoming movie.

Best Fast and Furious Car Stunts

Related 10 Best Fast & Furious Car Stunts, Ranked The Fast and Furious franchise has taken its stunts to outrageous new heights with every movie, but it remains committed to great practical effects.

Vin Diesel Confirmed 3 Years Ago That Avengers: Endgame Inspired Fast & Furious 11
This Decision Was Influenced By His Involvement In The MCU

The Fast & Furious franchise ending with a two-part finale was inspired by Avengers: Endgame. Although Diesel doesn’t physically appear in Marvel Studios’ films, he has been lending his voice to the beloved Groot and its various iterations since the release of James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy in 2014. He subsequently featured in two sequels released in 2017 and 2023, as well as Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame, the latter of which marked the culmination of the MCU’s Infinity Saga.

Fast X
is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.

Vin Diesel revealed that the original intention was to conclude the Fast and Furious series with its tenth film, but that perspective shifted after witnessing the impact of Avengers: Endgame. The decision to split one larger concluding chapter into two movies makes sense when there is a vast amount of story left to explore. Encouraged by the immense commercial and critical success of Avengers: Endgame, Diesel and his team envisioned replicating the MCU’s formula with the Fast & Furious movies.

Fast & Furious 11’s Endgame Influence Means Dominic Toretto Will Die
Dom Will Take The Iron Man Role, Sacrificing Himself To Save His Family
Peter Parker consoles Tony Stark in Avengers Endgame.

Fast and Furious 11 being influenced by Avengers: Endgame suggests that Dominic Toretto is likely to die. Arguably the most memorable aspect of the Avengers: Endgame ending was the tragic death of Tony Stark, played by Robert Downey Jr. As Thanos engaged in battle with numerous heroes in a bid to seize all six Infinity Stones, Iron Man recognized the one chance to emerge victorious involved his own sacrifice.

If its Avengers: Endgame inspiration is any indication, Fast and Furious 11 will likely see Dom sacrifice himself to save his family, mirroring the iconic ending of Avengers: Endgame. While the MCU has no single main character, the franchise began with Iron Man in 2008, making RDJ’s Tony Stark the franchise’s first official hero. Similarly, Fast and Furious contains many different characters after over 20 years of releases, but everything began with Vin Diesel’s Dom. If Fast and Furious 11 is drawing inspiration from Avengers: Endgame in terms of how to conclude a movie franchise, Dom will die just as Tony Stark did.

A composite image of The Rock as Hobbs with Jason Mom as Luke Reyes riding a motorcycle from The Fast and Furious Related The Fast & Furious Hobbs Spinoff: Confirmation, Story & Everything We Know Fast X brought back Luke Hobbs and pit him against the new villain Dante Reyes, setting up a Hobbs spinoff movie with Jason Momoa and Dwayne Johnson.

Fast & Furious 11 Killing Dom Will Perfectly Flip Fast X’s Ending
Dom Is One Of The Survivors In Fast X.

If Fast and Furious 11 kills Dom, it will perfectly flip the Fast X ending, which saw Dom and his son in precarious circumstances. Dom and Little Brian found themselves in a dam in Portugal that was poised to explode. It appeared that Dante had gained the upper hand over Dom, at least for the time being. While Dom surely survives Fast X’s cliffhanger, Jakob (John Cena) had previously sacrificed his life to protect Little Brian from Dante.

Fast and Furious 11 can flip this ending, with Dom making the ultimate sacrifice to protect his family from Dante. Such an ending would make sense for the character, who has always been selfless and shown immense care towards the people he loves. Vin Diesel has said family so many times in every Fast and Furious movie that it would complete his arc if he demonstrated his love for them with the biggest sacrifice possible. Comparisons to Avengers: Endgame only make that outcome more likely.

Fast and Furious 11 temp poster Fast and Furious 11 Fast and Furious 11 is the final movie in the Fast Saga. It reunites Vin Diesel’s Dominic Toretto with the rest of the cast for one last ride. However, the franchise is open for spinoff films like Hobbs & Shaw afterward.Director Louis Leterrier Release Date April 4, 2025

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Fast & Furious’ Lowest-Grossing Movie Explains Why The Saga Hasn’t Been About Cars For 15 Years

Summary

The Fast & Furious series has shifted focus from car racing to action, with Tokyo Drift being the lowest-grossing installment.
Tokyo Drift’s failure prompted the franchise to move away from street racing and towards more traditional action film elements.
Fast & Furious successfully shifted the franchise’s direction away from racing, towards bigger budgets and grander scales.

The Fast & Furious saga has not exactly been about cars for quite some time, and the franchise’s lowest-grossing installment seems to explain why. Every time the Fast & Furious franchise pops up, it is hard not to think about car racing, exotic supercars, and Vin Diesel’s signature quotes about family. While Vin Diesel’s quotes and overall hard-as-nails leader persona have not changed much as the movie franchise has progressed, Fast & Furious has seemingly shifted its focus from thrilling races to sensational action set pieces in recent years.

Given the franchise’s worldwide popularity, many factors may have contributed to these changes. Owing to this, one may not be able to pinpoint the precise reason why the Fast & Furious franchise changed its narrative direction. However, the lowest-grossing film in the Fast & Furious series might provide some answers to why the films are now less about racing and more about heists and across-the-globe action.

the fast and the furious cast crew

Related Every Fast And Furious Movie In Chronological Order Fast and the Furious launched a massive franchise – but the films were not released in chronological order! Here’s how to watch.

Tokyo Drift Is Fast & Furious’ Lowest-Grossing Movie
The Fast & the Furious: Tokyo Drift grossed $158.9 million worldwide

Since it has been around for over two decades, it is not surprising that the Fast & Furious franchise has had a fair share of ups and downs, highs and lows at the box office. Although the franchise is still fairly profitable, its recent installments have offered diminishing returns. However, despite the franchise’s dwindling box office numbers, none of its installments have had a box office as low as The Fast & the Furious: Tokyo Drift. The first movie in the franchise, The Fast & the Furious, was a success after it raked in $207.5 million at the worldwide box office against a budget of $38 million.

Even the second film in the franchise, 2 Fast 2 Furious, proved profitable after it grossed $236.3 million globally on a budget of $76 million. The third installment was expected to continue this trend, with its relatively higher budget of $85 million. However, despite having a bigger budget than its predecessors, Tokyo Drift could not continue the franchise’s trend of getting higher returns with each new installment. Eight new Fast & Furious movies have come out since Tokyo Drift’s release, and none of them even come close to matching its low box office scores.

Fast & Furious Movie Budget Worldwide Box Office The Fast & the Furious $38 million $207,517,509 2 Fast 2 Furious $76 million $236,350,661 The Fast & the Furious: Tokyo Drift $85 million $158,964,610 Fast & Furious $85 million $360,366,870 Fast Five $125 million $626,137,675 Fast & Furious 6 $160 million $788,680,968 Furious 7 $190 million $1,515,341,399 The Fate of the Furious $250 million $1,236,005,118 Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw $200 million $760,732,926 F9 $200 million $726,229,501 Fast X $340 million $714,555,549 Total $1.749 billion $7,476,903,108

Tokyo Drift Is The Street Racing-Focused Movie Many Want Fast & Furious To Be
Tokyo Drift is the most “Fast & Furious” movie in the franchise
Sean behind the wheel in Tokyo Drift

Even to this day, theFast & Furiousfranchise is associated with fancy cars and white-knuckling street races. However, one look at the recent movies in the franchise will reveal that its focus has drifted away from what it used to be about. While it still features high-octane car chases and expensive cars, the “racing” element seems missing. Given how street car races in the early installments of the film franchise played a crucial role in drawing audiences to it,Tokyo Driftarguably is amongFast & Furious’ better installments because it offers everything from drift competitions to intense underground racing scenes.

Christopher Nolan once said (via

Collider

) that he has a “soft spot” for Tokyo Drift.

Storytelling has never been the Fast & Furious franchise’s strongest suit. However, in some ways, Tokyo Drift also has a more relatable storyline than other films because its narrative primarily revolves around an underdog street racer who beats the bad guy in the film’s climax. The recent Fast & Furious movies are far superior when it comes to having an ensemble cast and high production value. However, they often prioritize spectacle over substance, sacrificing the simpler elements that made the first few films successful.

Vin-Diesel-as-Dominic-Toretto-from-The-Fast-and-Furious-Franchise Related Vin Diesel’s Fast & Furious Ending Promise Means The Franchise Must Avoid 1 Major Temptation Fast 11 will be the last installment in the main Fast & Furious franchise, and in order to end it properly, one huge temptation must be avoided.

Tokyo Drift’s Box Office Performance Prompted Fast & Furious To Change
Tokyo Drift’s failures triggered the franchise to move away from street racing

After Tokyo Drift’s inability to top or even match its predecessors’ success, the fourth installment in the film franchise, Fast & Furious, marked the return of the original cast. Since Tokyo Drift’s underwhelming box office numbers established that the film franchise worked better when it did not primarily focus on underground car racing, 2009’s Fast & Furious focused less on those elements and presented itself as a regular action film. Although Fast & Furious did not entirely shed the franchise’s roots in car culture, it paved the way for a new narrative direction for the movie series.

Fast & Furious proved that even though Tokyo Drift’s grounded storyline and underground street races had their charm, they did not have the blockbuster pull the franchise needed to maintain momentum.

Fast & Furious’s formula even worked wonders for the franchise, given how it earned almost twice as much as Tokyo Drift at the global box office despite having the same budget. With this, Fast & Furious proved that even though Tokyo Drift’s grounded storyline and underground street races had their charm, they did not have the blockbuster pull the franchise needed to maintain momentum. As a result, Fast & Furious became the blueprint for the franchise, resulting in Fast Five and the subsequent films repeating its formula with bigger budgets and even grander scale.

fast furious movies ranked worst best Related Every Fast & Furious Movie Ranked From Worst to Best From B-movie roots to Fast X, here is every Fast and the Furious movie ranked from worst to best, through ridiculous stunts and family themes.

Fast & Furious Was Never The Same After Fast Five
Fast Five marked the inception of a new era for the franchise

After adopting everything that made 2009’s Fast & Furious successful and becoming the first film in the franchise to cross the $500 million box office mark, Fast Five proved that the franchise had to rinse and repeat the 2009 film’s winning recipe. Owing to this, with each installment, the Fast & Furious franchise only drifted further away from its core identity, which revolved around racing and car culture. Although recent movies in the Fast & Furious franchise have not been performing as well as expected, it seems like it is too late for the 11th movie to take a U-turn and experiment with a return to its roots.

Untitled design (4)-5 The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift is the third installment in the Fast and Furious franchise. Tokyo Drift follows Sean Boswell, a car-loving teenager shipped off to live with his Navy lieutenant father in Tokyo when his racing antics find him running foul of the law. When Sean discovers Tokyo’s nightlife, he embraces the dangerous underground world of drift racing.Release Date June 4, 2006 Studio(s) Universal Pictures , Relativity Media Distributor(s) Universal Pictures Writers Chris Morgan Cast Lucas Black , Bow Wow , Sung Kang , Brian Tee , Nathalie Kelley , Sonny Chiba , Leonardo Nam , Brian Goodman Runtime 104 Minutes Budget $85 Million

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