The Fast and Furious franchise is what every movie studio hopes to accomplish. Every year, movie-makers try to launch successful franchises and fail, whether it’s Universal's Dark Universe or The Amazing Spider-Man. After 17 years and eight movies, the Fast and Furious movies aren’t showing any signs of stopping. If anything, with more movies furiously on the way, it’s living up to the name.
These movies have changed quite a bit over the years, and most would argue for the better. They’ve gotten more exciting, each new installment has even cooler cars and the characters evolve throughout the series, adding new depth to their conflicts. What people really care about the most though is not the story, but the high-octane thrills these movies deliver. Going to the theater to watch one of these movies is akin to strapping into a roller coaster.
For all its limitless excitement though, it’s hard to ignore these films' plot holes. Look, everyone knows these movies aren’t about plot. That’s not what people see them for. Nevertheless, a plot hole—especially really obvious ones—never work in movies. They can actually take viewers out of the experience and remind them that it’s all pretend. People would rather get immersed in movies than be reminded it’s all fiction.
The Fast and Furious plot holes are numerous, but they don’t ruin the movies. If anything, they only make the movies more fun and over the top, which is part of the filmmakers’ intentions. Still, we can’t help but point some of them out and laugh. There are spoilers throughout, so if you’ve been out of the loop, watch the movies before you check back here.
Hand it to Dom, the guy will survive anything. Whether it’s a tank on a highway, a missile-firing submarine or a flying car out the window of a building, Dom’s done it all and lived to tell the tale. At what point though does it start to get ridiculous?
Vulture makes a great case about the heroes of the franchise never losing a battle. They allude to the scene where Dom, in a face-off with Shaw, stomps the cracking ground, which perfectly crumbles around his adversary. With powers like that, Dom should consider making a switch to the Avengers franchise.
Part of what makes Fast Five such a strong entry in the series is everything that goes down in Rio de Janeiro. The Brazil scenes aren’t immune to plot holes though. Ranker notes that the Police cars are actually Dodge Chargers.
With the police in pursuit of our heroes, one would think that Chargers would have a better chance. Instead, the Chargers fly and crash around town as if they were chasing the Joker in a cartoon. It’s also strange they’d have this kind of budget to spend on their fleet of vehicles.
The Fate of the Furious takes the franchise to a whole new level, and that includes plot holes that raise eyebrows. Aside from Cipher’s sketchy motives, there’re the limitless capabilities she has at her disposal.
In one scene, she hacks into tons of cars and makes them do her bidding. Time points out an issue with this: what about all the older cars? Unless all those cars retroactively got tech upgrades in recent weeks leading up to the incident, we're pretty sure that's not possible.
We need to take a moment of silence for Han. Not only did this man dedicate himself to Dom and the crew, but he lost his life on the job. The villain—at the time—to dispatch Han was Deckard Shaw, played by Jason Statham.
Fans who’ve stuck with the series know though, as Digital Spy notes, that Shaw becomes an ally. What’s odd is that no one brings up Han or the time in Tokyo where Shaw drove through his car to cause a T Bone crash.
Looking over the fact that Elena initially met Dom when she was with the police, they eventually formed an unlikely pair. She, in turn, got pregnant, and that brings us to the events of Furious 7.
In one scene, the villain Deckard Shaw throws a timed explosive towards Elena, but Hobbs steps in to save her. As a result, they both end up flying out of the building’s window. As Time points out, it’s a stretch that Elena and her baby are perfectly fine after this dangerous episode.
Even though a movie is two hours long, there’s still a lot of story that happens off-screen. For the sake of time, it’s necessary for audiences to accept these events happened even though they never see it.
For example, as Time points out, Deckard Shaw broke his brother, Owen, out of a maximum security prison. It would’ve been better to see it, but something tells us the filmmakers didn’t know how to show it and still make it look remotely believable.
With all the events the main characters have gone through, it seems they’d garner more attention. If we imagine that a group of globe-trotting individuals were driving exotic cars out of skyscrapers and parachuting out of planes and stealing from trains, then they'd have the biggest fan club.
Plus, with all the technology we have today, Digital Spy points out that the average passerby would capture it all on their smartphone. It’s odd the franchise doesn’t acknowledge this idea at all or incorporate it into the story.
Just because a scene doesn’t make sense doesn’t mean it can’t also be exhilarating at the same time. One of the best scenes in Fast & Furious 6 involves the bad guy, Owen Shaw, attempting to board a plane to make his escape.
With the team on his tail, the plane decides to land on the runaway still moving while cars load up. As Screen Rant points out in a YouTube video, that plane is going around 140 mph on a 20-mile runway, which conflicts with the duration of the scene.
When you make as many movies as there in the Fast and Furious franchise, the timeline is going to get wonky. Even the Avengers movies can’t keep the timeline straight. Even though Han met his end in the third film, he stuck around in the sequels, which were essentially prequels to Tokyo Drift in chronological order.
While the timeline challenge arose out of the creators wanting to keep Han in the franchise, it presents problems. Digital Spy points out that people are using flip phones in Tokyo Drift, but by the time Fast & Furious 6 rolls around, everything's advanced.
The characters in the Fast and Furious franchise are unreal. They’ve grown up from street racers into full-fledged superheroes. That means they’re capable of doing anything, even if that means doing defying the impossible.
Time finds it hard to imagine Dom being able to drive through Time Square as fast as he was able to in The Fate of the Furious. Keep in mind, it’s in the middle of the day and there’s jam-packed Manhattan traffic to contend with.
When it comes to enjoying the Fast and Furious movies, it’s best to leave any perceptions about physics at the door. That’s easier said than done. We can’t get over the fact that Dom survived a particular explosion in The Fate of the Furious, thanks to a clever YouTube video by Screen Rant.
The action scene involving the submarine is epic, but one thing bothers us. When the explosion from the missile that Dom diverted threatens to engulf him, everyone comes to his aid. Their cars buffet the fiery blast and prevent any harm from coming to Dom or their own vulnerable selves.
It’s hard not to like Tej. Played by Ludicrous, he’s one of the more charismatic characters of the bunch. He’s also extremely talented. So talented in fact, his exploits in Furious 7 raised some eyebrows.
On the eve of a big mission, Ranker notes that Tej was able to do the impossible in preparing the team’s arsenal of vehicles. There’s no way he could take apart two vehicles, cobble together parts to make a new car and then implement parachutes, GPS and other wonderful tech in all of them in just one night.
We hate to break it to the characters, but there’s an easier way to do their jobs. In Fast Five, the team is after some cars stowed away on a train. What they don’t know, however, is that the gang they’re teamed up with are really after a microchip hidden in one of the car’s radios.
As a YouTube by Screen Rant points out, it would’ve been easier just to take microchip from the one car than all the cars. Maybe the gang’s leader was afraid our heroes would steal the microchip for themselves.
Even the bad guys have obstacles they need to face that aren’t always related to the heroes. Hobbs was never a bad guy, but he certainly starts out the series as a challenge for our main characters to deal with.
It seems though, as Ranker outlines, that he’s able to do whatever he wants without answering to a superior. This seems like a major oversight considering he let Dom walk away in Rio de Janeiro and later joins the team.
One of the more exciting action sequences from Fast & Furious involved the team stealing a huge tanker trunk. Once they get a hold of it, they give out some of this gas to fill up cars.
As Ranker points out though, once Han tells Dom the cops are privy to the theft, it calls the whole plan into question. What exactly did the team plan to do with the gas tanker once they stole it? In the end, all it led to was a hilarious sequence where Dom runs down a street from a pursuing police car.
Audiences want to see their favorite characters change over time. Unless they go through arcs, they risk becoming stale. Paul Walker’s character, Brian, not only goes through changes, but changes so big it almost isn’t believable.
As Digital Spy outlines, he started out as an undercover cop, turned to street racing and then by the time Fast & Furious rolled around, joined the FBI. This isn’t going to keep audiences from watching the movies, but it’s still a drastic evolution in professions.
Here it is—Fast and Furious fans knew it was coming—and there’s no escaping it. This has to be the biggest plot hole in the franchise. Letty Ortiz, played by Michelle Rodriguez, died in the fourth film. Then she came back in the sixth movie and audiences found out she wasn’t really dead.
We can understand why the filmmakers wanted to bring Rodriguez back—she's extremely charismatic—but they did it in a lazy manner. If there wasn’t much suspense before, there’s even less knowing main characters can’t die.
It may be a little nitpicky, but it still stands out as a plot element that doesn’t make much sense when compared to reality. In Fast Five, Dom and Hobbs get in an intense fight. They’re both at each other’s throats, and naturally, the viewer focuses in on their conflict.
The problem is, as the site Movie Plot Holes notes, the police do nothing but stand by and watch. While it’s possible they were afraid to intervene, it seems more likely they would back up Hobbs.
Many think that Fast Five is one of the best entries in the franchise. It’s full of great action, actors and ups the ante on where the series went from there. That doesn’t mean it’s perfect though. Later in the movie, Hobbs happens upon our heroes’ hideout and the Ford GT40 that housed the radio containing the microchip, which has been completely dismantled.
Still following with us? What’s hard to believe, as Ranker points out, is that Hobbs’ team was able to put this rare car back together, at least without any problems that the audience sees.
There’s a significant item that gets passed back and forth between Dom and Letty throughout the series: a cross necklace. It becomes a major plot piece in the last film, The Fate of the Furious, as a tracker. It’s how Shaw ends up finding the villain, Cipher.
Time notes that Cipher took great precautions in going under the radar so no one could find her. It seems a little strange however that she would overlook this, forgetting to check if Dom had anything on him that might lead someone to her.
Part of what drew viewers to the original film were its exciting race sequences. One of the more memorable scenes features Brian O’Conner, played by Paul Walker, letting his ego get the best of him. During a major race, he manages to get going up to 150 mph, which causes the car’s flooring on the passenger side to start falling apart.
Somehow it holds together, even though—as Ranker reminds us—he requested two NOS tanks to improve the vehicle’s performance. It seems odd that the car would break down on that side before making a miraculous recovery.
It wouldn’t be fun to live in the Fast and Furious universe. Think about all the average citizens in all the cities who experience turmoil when Dom and his team come into town.
The site Dorkly highlights the scene with Owen Shaw where he rolls down a highway in a tank. As it hurtles on towards incoming traffic, a viewer becomes concerned for the heroes and whether they're going to make it out of this. Then again, what about all the people that get a bad hand thanks to the main characters leaving destruction in their wake?
This plot issue is minor, but it reveals a lack of geographical understanding on behalf of the filmmakers. Again, no one really watches these movies for its settings, but it’s still funny to point out.
Screen Rant in a video posted to YouTube notes that the train heist sequence in Fast Five takes place on a desert, except that the Brazil climate doesn't have any locations like this. With that bit of information, it seems fair this was actually set in a fictional Brazil that's unlike the one we know today.
Remember the gaffe involving Cipher and the missed tracker Dom carried? Earlier in the film, Dom met with his mom, Magdalene, to put that plan into action. When one distills all the pieces Dom had to put in place though, it’s a bit of a stretch.
Digital Spy notes that Dom would have had a brief window of time to concoct the plan with Magdalene and give her the device. It may not be easy to spot the first time, but it’ll stick out in repeat viewings.
Maybe it’s unfair to pick on The Fate of the Furious so much, considering the filmmakers have to elevate the stakes further with each new entry. Granted, this next one is worth noting.
Everyone is chasing after Dom when each car manages to pin him down with harpoons. As per YouTube channel Movieclips, Hobbs says, “he’s gotta have about 2,000 horsepower in that thing,” to which Tej remarks, "try 3,000.” Then Deckard Shaw interjects, “try 5.” If Dom’s car really has 5,000 horsepower, something tells us the filmmakers don’t know cars.
Sources: Time, Ranker, Vulture, Digital Spy, Movie Plot Holes, Dorkly, YouTube