F9 always seemed set to be a risky film for the ludicrously successful Fast and Furious franchise.
The series' long-time screenwriter Chris Morgan was absent, the decision to bring fan favourite character Han back from the dead was dubious at best and given that this was no doubt going to try and top the already-insane previous movies, the film was always at risk of jumping the shark.
The sequel, after many delays, has finally arrived and sadly, people's fears were right. This is not a good movie at all; ironically, the return of Han was the thing people were most concerned about but that part of the film actually works for the most part. It's pretty much everything else that's the problem.
It gives your writer, who is a big fan of the series, no joy to say this but F9 is an overlong, witless, poorly-written and downright dull action flick that is by far and away the worst film since the franchise-worst fourth movie way back in 2009.
In fact, it comes dangerously closely to de-throning that one as the worst Fast and Furious film to date, and here's why...
10. That Cardi B Cameo Though...
Cardi B's cameo as Leysa, a woman whom Dom has a history with, is a small scene, but it's still a dreadful one and despite being so short, it still manages to linger in your mind once the credits roll.
Musician cameos are something of a tradition for this franchise, but the ones in other films were just fine since they were generally background figures, making their presence far less distracting. In contrast, Leysa actually affects the plot since she rescues Dom from the villain's clutches, so this cameo is a hell of a lot more jarring.
It's also a very badly-written scene that's cringe-worthy and unfunny as all hell, making it one of the worst moments from any of the last few Fast and Furious movies.
Apparently Leysa is the sister of Cara Mirtha (Mirtha Michelle), a minor character from Fast & Furious (2009). It's hard to see why the writers wanted to make this callback to the creative low-point of the series but then again, most of the creative choices in this movie are pretty inexplicable.