Peter Miles was 14 years old — almost 15 — at the time of his father’s fatal crash. Shortly after his father’s death, Peter went to work for Ken’s friend Dick Troutman at the Troutman and Barnes custom car shop in Culver City, CA. Peter worked there for 14 years.
Peter joined Precision Performance Inc. in 1986. He started out as a fabricator, and then became a mechanic, before advancing to the position of crew chief. Peter was the crew chief for Ivan Stewart when Stewart won the 1991 Nissan 400 in Nevada.
In a 2019 interview, Peter revealed that the last time he went to Le Mans was in 1965 with his father Ken.
Okay, deep breath. Thanos is snapped away along with his minions, and Ironman (luv u 3000) is hanging out with his daughter in the Soul Stone.
That’s the past. It’s time to create new stories, heroes, villains and get the MCU Phase 4 underway.
Here’s the movie/TV lineup Disney has announced:
May 1st, 2020 – Black Widow
What we know so far: the story takes place between the events of Civil War and Infinity War.
Stars: of course, Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff / Black Widow, and also introducing Florence Pugh (Angela in Malevolent, Saraya Knight in Fighting with My Family) as Yelena Belova, David Harbour (Jim Hopper in Stranger Things, Dexter Tolliver in Suicide Squad) as Alexei Shostakov / Red Guardian, Rachel Weisz as Melina Vostokoff…and oh yeah, this guy named Robert Downey Jr. may have a cameo as Tony Stark.
November 6, 2020 – The Eternals
What we know so far: It introduces the Eternals, a race of immortal beings who lived on Earth and shaped its history and civilizations.
Stars: Angelina Jolie as Thena, Richard Madden (Robb Stark in GOT) as Ikaris, Salma Hayek as Ajak, Gemma Chan (Astrid Young Teo in Crazy Rich Asians) as Sersi, Kit Harington (Jon Snow in GOT) as Dane Whitman, Kumail Nanjiani (Stu inStuber, in Silicon Valley) as Kingo, Lauren Ridloff (Connie in The Walking Dead) as Makkari, Barry Keoghan (George in Dunkirk) as Druig, Brian Tyree Henry (Jefferson Davis in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse) as Phastos, Lia McHugh (Jessica Nolan in American Woman) as Sprite, and Dong-seok Ma (Sang-hwa in Train to Busan) as Gilgamesh.
November 12, 2020: The Falcon and Winter Soldier on Disney+
What we know: Kari Skogland (The Handmaid’s Tale) will direct all six episodes of the series.
Stars: Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan will officially reprise their roles as Sam Wilson (Falcon) and Bucky Barnes (Winter Soldier) in The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. Daniel Bruhl and Emily VanCamp will both be joining the cast — reprising the roles they played in Captain America: Civil War.
February 12, 2021 – Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
What we know: an introduction of the Marvel Comics character Shang-Chi the Kung-Fu Master. In the comics Shang Chi’s main power was really just a skill: the ability to rapidly master forms of combat. Although in later years, he did gain the power to replicate himself, which could come in handy. It’s unknown if the MCU will duplicate that power from the comics.
Stars: Simu Liu as Shang-Chi and Tony Chiu-Wai Leung as The Mandarin.
Spring 2021: WandaVision on Disney+
What we know: There will be six episodes that follow after the events of Avengers: Endgame. It’s unknown how they will explain Vision’s return after he was killed/unstoned by Thanos at the end of Avengers: Infinity War. We do know that the events of WandaVision will cross over into the events of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, which premiers around the same time.
Stars: Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany will reprise their roles of Maximoff and Vision. They will be joined by Kat Dennings as Darcy Lewis from the Thor movies and Randall Park as Agent Jimmy Woo from Ant-Man. In addition Kathryn Hahn (Afternoon Design, Bad Moms) will also be joining as a “nosey neighbor.” Teyonah Parris is cast to play the role of Monica Rambeau — the young girl introduced in Captain Marvel.
May 7, 2021 – Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
What we know: the plot is unknown but it will involve a crossover with the Disney+ show WandaVision.
Stars: Benedict Cumberbatch as Stephen Strange/Doctor Strange, Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch, Rachel McAdams as Christine Palmer (Strange’s girlfriend from the first Dr. Strange movie), Benedict Wong as Wong, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Karl Mordo, and a To-be-confirmed actor as Nightmare.
Who is Nightmare, you ask? In Marvel Comics, Nightmare is a Class 3 demon —equal to Dormammu, Shuma Gorath, and Cthulhu — who rules the Nightmare World, located within the Dream Dimension. Nightmare feeds off humanity’s collective psychic dream energy, and terrorizes humans and superheroes alike.
Spring 2021: Loki on Disney+
What we know so far: Tom Hiddleston will reprise his role as Loki, even though Thanos killed him in the first scene of Avengers: Endgame. But remember, later in the movie the Avengers go on their time travel adventures — and Loki ends up holding the Tesseract and disappearing with it.
Hiddleston said: In the years since Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame, which came out this Spring… Two questions I’ve been asked are ‘is Loki really dead?’ and ‘what’s Loki doing with that cube?’ It’s always the cube somehow. And this series will answer both of those questions.
July 16, 2021 – Spider-Man 3
What we know: not much. The good news is that Spider-Man is returning to the MCU at all. The bad news is this is likely his last solo movie in the MCU. The plot is unknown, but will likely pick up on the ending of Far From Home, where Spider-Man was revealed to the public to be Peter Parker. And since Sony and Disney aren’t playing very well with each other, this movie might reveal why Spider-Man won’t be continuing as an Avenger. Unless Disney buys Sony and makes this whole mess go away.
Summer 2021: WHAT IF…?
What we know: this is the first animated adventure in the MCU. The first season will have 23 episodes that explore what would have happened in previous MCU stories had things gone differently.
Stars: Jeffrey Wright (West World as Bernard, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire as Beetee ) stars as the Watcher, who narrates the series.
November 5, 2021 – Thor: Love and Thunder
What we know: Director Taika Waititi, who did Thor: Ragnarok, is back. So is Natalie Portman as Jane, only this time she’s going to level up and gain the powers of Thor herself. (50/50 odds that she cries at some point.)
Stars: Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Tessa Thompson as Brunnhilde/Valkyrie, Natalie Portman as Jane Foster/Mighty Thor, Taika Waititi (the director) as Korg.
Fall 2021: Hawkeye on Disney+
What we know: The show will act as a passing of the baton as Clint Barton ( Jeremy Renner) passes the title of “Hawkeye” to a new character: Kate Bishop. Kate is rumored to be played by Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit, Enders Game, Bumble Bee), but that is not yet confirmed.
Note: Disney+ series for Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk, and Moon Knight are also in the works, and will debut after Hawkeye.
October 7 – untitled movie
I’m going out on a limb to speculate that there will be more than one MCU movie released in 2022.
February 17 – untitled movie
May 5 – untitled movie
July 28 – untitled movie
November 3 – untitled movie
Ray McKinnon may not be a household name — I had to look him up myself — but I recognized him straight away when I saw him because he plays a very similar character in Apollo 13. Which coincidentally enough takes place at roughly the same time period — Ford v Ferrari takes place in 1966-67 and Apollo 13 takes place in 1967-1970. I guess Ray just has that “I’m an engineer look,” about him — whatever that might be like.
Ray has quite an extensive filmography, including 83 actor credits, from Sons of Anarchy to The X Files.
Check out this interview with Ray discussing his work in Ford v Ferrari.
Terminator: Dark Fate opens this week. It’s the sixth movie in the Terminator franchise. However, it is the official sequel to Terminator 2: Judgment Day…which basically invalidates Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, one of my favorite entries in the entire franchise.
Billy Crystal once joked that Arnold Schwarzenegger signed on to make Terminator 3 in exchange for everything west of the Rockies. Terminator 2 was so popular that such an outrageous payday almost seemed feasible at the time. Expectations for the third film were extremely high.
Unfortunately, lightning usually doesn’t strike twice. I’m the first to admit that T3 isn’t is as good as T2. However, it’s still a movie I enjoy and I feel like it doesn’t deserve its poor reputation. So here is my defense of Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines.
Before we begin…
Yes, it’s a flawed film and I understand the problems people may have with it. James Cameron didn’t direct. Edward Furlong was replaced by Nick Stahl. And Linda Hamilton turned down the offer to reprise her role as Sarah Conner, and was subsequently written out of the series. Setting those things aside, can we enjoy what there is to enjoy? Because there’s a lot.
Nick Stahl makes a decent John Connor.
Christian Bale’s portrayal of an adult John Connor in Terminator: Salvation is too moody for my taste and turns the character into a jerk. I honestly don’t remember how Jason Clarke played the role in Terminator: Genisys. (I mainly remember a good movie being ruined halfway through by an unnecessary plot twist.) Stahl is a good choice to play the disillusioned young man who is uncertain of the future and his place in it. I buy into his character enough that when the final scene comes, I’m ready for another hour.
It has a strong prologue.
The movie has a great opening prologue that builds audience sympathy for John Connor. He is saddled with the burden of knowledge, the burden of leadership, the burden of greatness, and the burden of unfulfilled prophecy hanging over his head.
The first female terminator.
Kristanna Loken plays the T-X, the first female terminator in the series. She also plays a newer model than Ahnuld, so she’s extremely powerful and gets to show off some badass moves. Plus she looks good in leather.
Although Kristanna Loken didn’t come out as bi until she did interviews with Curve in 2006 and The Advocate in 2007 (years after T3 came out), it’s still inspiring to myself (and others) that one of the terminators is bisexual.
You have to love Claire Danes.
Claire Danes adds humor and a dash of romance to the film as Kate Brewster, John’s future wife and a key figure in the resistance. Any excuse to watch Claire Danes for two hours is a good one, but this performance is especially worthwhile.
It has a great twist.
The movie has a great twist. SPOILER ALERT: It’s actually Judgment Day! What could be more exciting than that?! You get to watch history in the making. The long rumored apocalypse is finally here and you have a front row seat.
The showdowns are so satisfying.
The action scenes between Loken and Schwarzenegger, from the car chase to the final battle, are all so satisfying. The sheer amount of destruction in this film is amazing. So is the fight choreography. Rewatching the movie this week, I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to defend it. Instead, I was thoroughly entertained.
The ending is a great set-up.
The ending to this movie is a wonderful set-up to a fourth film that never happened and perhaps never will. It’s Infinity War with no Endgame. It’s Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part One left hanging. John and Kate are in a fallout shelter on Judgment Day. How do you not want to know everything that happens from there? It’s such a great set-up for a fourth film, a perfect place to resume the story, but no one ever picked up the ball and ran with it. Not even in the comic books. No one has gone back to the fallout shelter and told the story of how the resistance was born from there, how John Connor became a leader starting on Judgment Day. (Terminator: Salvation shifts the storyline back to Kyle Reese.) I’m still hungry for that promised-but-never-delivered movie.
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Gemini Man opens October 11. The name Will Smith has become synonymous with sci-fi action films. Smith has had a long and varied career, even if his genre roles are my favorite. I’ve been a fan of his since I was a kid. Somewhere I have a Soundtracks cassette of eight-year-old me rapping (or attempting to) “Parents Just Don’t Understand.” (Once upon a time, kids, we paid to do karaoke and they gave us recordings of it.) On the eve of Will Smith’s latest movie, let’s take a look at his most essential performances.
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
Will Smith’s first significant acting job was starring in this long-running sitcom. He played a fish out of water who left a rough neighborhood in Philadelphia to live with his rich relatives in California after getting in a fight. But you probably already knew that from the famous, catchy theme song. I had loved Will aka The Fresh Prince for his novelty rap songs like “I Think I Can Beat Mike Tyson.” This show was what made him a household name though.
Six Degrees of Separation
This was one of Will Smith’s first movie roles and it proved he could play serious parts. Smith’s character interrupts a rich couple’s dinner party claiming to be a friend of their Ivy League children. He charms his way into their home but there may be more to him than there appears. This movie, adapted from John Guare’s play, is the basis of the Kevin Bacon game aka Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon. (I can link Will to Kevin in 2 degrees. Will Smith stars with Tommy Lee Jones in Men in Black. Tommy Lee Jones stars with Brad Pitt in Ad Astra. Brad Pitt is in Sleepers with Kevin Bacon.)
Will Smith joined fellow sitcom star Martin Lawrence for this action film where they play detectives. The duo proved to be so popular that not only did they make a second movie, a third one is slated to come out next year and a fourth one is in pre-production.
This blockbuster set a precedent for a while. It just wasn’t summer without a Will Smith movie, most of them coming out on Fourth of July weekend. Smith plays a military pilot who helps defend Earth against an alien attack. The special effects may seem dated today, but at the time the White House getting blown up by a UFO was the coolest thing any of us had ever seen. The movie became the highest-grossing film of 1996. The following summer would see Smith working with aliens again.
Men in Black
Based on a comic book, this sci-fi comedy blockbuster paired Will Smith with Tommy Lee Jones. They made for a winning team. They play secret agents who are part of an organization that supervises alien lifeforms on Earth and hides their existence from humans. The movie spawned three sequels and a cartoon series.
Smith plays boxer Muhammad Ali in this biopic. His performance earned him his first Oscar nomination. (I’m not going to discuss his second Oscar nomination for The Pursuit of Happyness. If you want to see Smith in an inspirational role, watch The Legend of Bagger Vance instead. It’s much less schmaltzy.) Sadly, this is one of those films where the movie isn’t as good as the performance. But it’s still worth seeing. Will Smith becomes Muhammad Ali.
I Am Legend
I still feel like Smith was within a hair’s breadth of getting an Oscar nomination for this role. You can feel his loneliness and isolation as the last man on earth after a zombie apocalypse. The scene where he begs a mannequin to talk to him is SO GOOD! This is easily one of my top films of 2007. It’s a change from the more humorous sci-fi roles of ID4 and MIB. This one’s more serious. And he still rocks it. It’s amazing how they were able to film/create an abandoned New York City, especially Times Square.
I love movies about con men. And this one has Margot Robbie to boot. Usually, Smith plays the hero. It’s rare to see him play an antihero (like in Hancock). This is a fun movie with some twists.
Smith plays Dr. Bennet Omalu in this important film about how football can lead to brain damage. He was nominated for a Golden Globe but snubbed by Oscar for his performance about a doctor who takes risks to do the right thing. This underrated performance is one of his best roles.
There aren’t words for how bummed I am that Smith won’t be reprising his role as Deadshot for the new Suicide Squad movie. He made a great antihero, a villain you cared about. He was a badass but he was also a loving father and made both halves of that believable. He also had great rapport with Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn. My only consolation is that he’ll probably play someone equally badass in the Marvel Cinematic Universe eventually.
No one else will ever be Robin Williams. However, Smith brought his own original spin to the role of the Genie. It’s hard not to enjoy this new version of the classic.
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Todd Philips’ controversial new film Joker opens this week. It’s kind of amazing that a character piece with no connection to the DC Universe and no Batman in sight got the green light. Many other movies aren’t so lucky. Even movies with major talent attached to them. Here’s a look at some superhero movies that were never made.
Superman Movies That Were Scrapped:
Christopher McQuarrie’s Man of Steel sequel
In July, the writer-director of Mission: Impossible-Fallout revealed on Twitter that he had pitched a Man of Steel sequel idea that would have tied in to a Green Lantern movie proposal. Ultimately, Warner Brothers rejected both ideas. McQuarrie did not give specifics of the plot of either film.
Matthew Vaughn’s Superman trilogy
The Kingsman director and comics creator Mark Millar pitched a Superman trilogy where the entire first film would have taken place on Krypton. Superman would have grown up on Krypton, a change to his origin story, “maturing into an adult before having to reckon with his loyalty to both planets,” as Vaughn told Polygon. This sounds like it could have really been epic. I wish he’d reveal what his plans for the other two films were.
J. J. Abrams wrote this Superman origin story that would have seen the hero fighting against new villain Ty-Zor, his Kryptonian cousin. McG and Brett Ratner were each attached to direct the project at one point. Warner Brothers ended up going with Superman Returns instead.
Superman Returns sequel
Bryan Singer’s Superman Returns didn’t make enough money at the box office to revive the franchise. He has hinted that a sequel would have been more action-oriented and might have featured the villain Brainiac. This is the one that stings for me. It always pulls at my heartstrings that SPOILER ALERT Superman has a son. I really wanted a sequel to explore that concept in depth. I remember watching Superman Returns with my friend Robert and both of us getting emotional during the scene where Superman watches his son sleeping. This will always be one of the great unmade sequels for me.
This is the most famous unmade Superman film. Tim Burton was attached to direct. Nicholas Cage was going to play Superman. Kevin Smith wrote a draft of the script. There’s even a documentary about it titled The Death of “Superman Lives”: What Happened? The movie would have featured villains Lex Luthor, Brainiac, and Doomsday. “The Death of Superman” story line from the comics was part of the movie’s inspiration. After seeing what Tim Burton did with Batman, one can’t help but wonder what his Superman would have been like.
Spider-Man Sequels We’ll Never Get to See:
I know, I know. Spidey’s a sore subject ever since the Sony/Marvel split. But the truth is that Spider-Man’s been breaking our hearts for a while with expected sequels that never made it out of the gate.
Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man
Casting rumors indicate that John Malkovich would have played the Vulture and Anne Hathaway would have played the Black Cat in this sequel. Concept art indicates that villain Mysterio would have put in at least a cameo appearance. Screenwriter James Vanderbilt was hired to write out plot lines for Spider-Man 5 and 6. The exact reasons this sequel never came together aren’t completely clear. Raimi takes responsibility and says he couldn’t deliver a quality film by the release date and didn’t want to disappoint the fans. Adding insult to injury is the fact that we never got to see Dylan Baker’s version of the Lizard.
The Amazing Spider-Man 3
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 ends with a cut scene that teases an awesome sequel. It sets up a group of fan favorite villains called The Sinister Six which Spider-Man would have faced in the next movie. Sadly, writer-director Drew Goddard never got to bring his vision to the screen though there are rumors it could still happen.
Batman Movies That Didn’t Happen:
Ivan Reitman’s Batman
The Ghostbusters director once had his eye on a 1960s-themed Batman project. And the casting for this one is insane. Bill Murray would have played Batman. Eddie Murphy would have been Robin. And David Bowie would have played the Joker. (Aren’t you dying to see that?) Fortunately, this movie fell apart, paving the way for Tim Burton’s Batman.
If Tim Burton had made a third Batman film, Marlon Wayans would have played Robin and Robin Williams would have been the Riddler. It would have set up a spinoff film for Michelle Pfeiffer’s Catwoman as well. As much as I like Batman Forever, I wish Burton could have completed his trilogy.
This would have been Joel Schumacher’s follow up to Batman and Robin. Schumacher’s third Batman film, the fifth in the series, would have seen The Scarecrow and Harley Quinn make their first appearances on the big screen. Batman and Robin also would have split up suggesting some of the darker storytelling associated more with Burton than Schumacher.
Other Comic Book Movies That Never Made It To the Big Screen:
Justice League: Mortal
Before Zack Snyder’s Justice League movie came to fruition, Mad Max director George Miller was slated to direct this project in 2008. The movie would have starred Armie Hammer as Batman, D.J. Catrona as Superman, Adam Brody and Anton Yelchin as dual Flashes, and Common as Green Lantern. A high budget and a writer’s strike led to the movie being cancelled.
Fox hired Noah Hawley (creator of TV shows Fargo and Legion) to write a movie about Fantastic Four villain Doctor Doom. Hawley has described his script as being an antihero story and a political thriller in the vein of Captain America: Winter Soldier. The movie is largely considered dead after the Disney-Fox merger, however there is still some hope that Marvel may make the film at some point. Especially now that they have plans to revive the Fantastic Four.
The Silver Surfer
Speaking of Fantastic Four characters, comic book writer Brian K. Vaughn was hired to write a script for a stand-alone Silver Surfer script. This was about two years before the Disney-Fox merger. This secretive project is probably DOA as most of Fox’s comic book projects have been under the merger. There is no word on whether actor Doug Jones would have reprised his role from the Fantastic Four sequel.
Green Lantern 2
Ryan Reynolds starred in The Green Lantern in 2011. A sequel was written that focused on Sinestro becoming evil. The first movie was a box office failure and plans for a sequel were scrapped. Reynolds made fun of Green Lantern’s poor box office performance in the more popular movie Deadpool.
Joss Whedon’s Wonder Woman
Before the Allan Heinberg script that became Patty Jenkins’ vision, Joss Whedon wrote an unproduced Wonder Woman script in the early 2000s. It was recently leaked to the internet and has faced a lot of criticism for being sexist and focusing too much on Steve Trevor instead of Wonder Woman, even going so far as to make him the main character. Whedon recently quit the Batgirl movie without completing a script, leaving it in limbo. Which makes it another movie we may not get to see or at least not for a long time.
Green Arrow: Escape From Super Max
I saved one of the best for last. This one is cool as hell and I wish they would make it. Framed for an assassination, Green Arrow has to partner with famous DC villains to break out of prison. Doesn’t that sound awesome? Cinema Blend has speculated that this would be an excellent script to transition the Arrow TV series into films.
What is your superpower?
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Have you seen or recently rewatched the UK six-season show Downton Abbey? Do you remember enough of it to make sense of the new film — one that doesn’t bother with any backstory exposition at all?
Here’s a cheat sheet to remind you of what you need to know to enjoy the Downton Abbey Movie (consider this a spoiler warning if you haven’t seen the series)…and here is how to watch the series online.
The Servants’ Halls:
Daisy began a relationship with Andrew, one of the footmen. It’s a relationship on equal appreciation, for once.
Mrs. Patmore is still the cook, and continues to mentor Daisy in life lessons.
Barrow is still the Butler, as Carson is retired. (His palsy is never referenced.)
Barrow is still gay and suffering from loneliness. He’s also mellowed out a lot.
Mrs. Carson (Previously Mrs. Hughes) is still in charge of the household.
Anna is still Lady Mary’s maid, and Baxter still is Lady Grantham’s maid.
MY GOD, the Bates’ Problems are over and done. Thankfully. They’ve been through enough.
The Nobles of Team Upstairs:
Awww, Lord Grantham still has his dog, which he loves more than his daughters. 😉
The Dowager Countess Lady Violet has NOT mellowed over the years, but she seems to accept Isobel Crawley now as a real friend. She’s has moved on to new frenemies (like her Dolores Umbridge counterpart from Harry Potter, Imelda Staunton.
Lady Edith and Lady Mary are still happily married, although their husbands and children are barely in the film. Mary = Henry Talbot. Edith = Bertie Pelham, FYI. There’s been a lot of men in their lives over the seasons, but this is how it ended up.
Also, Isobel Crawley is still the Baroness Merton with her marriage to Richard Grey, who is still no longer dying.
Robert and Cora are still as cute a couple as ever (Lord and Lady Grantham).
Lady Rosamund and Rose are nowhere to be seen.
Sisters Mary and Edith appear to have maintained the hard won truce they found at the end of the series.
Tom Branson remains is a loyal son-in-law and is comfortable being a nobleman now, but his Irish socialist past still haunts him.
If you really want to know the very detailed ins and outs of how Downton Abbey ended, check out this wiki.
Finally: A very detailed video refresher narrator by the beloved stars — by the beloved Carson and Mrs:Hughes/Carson: (HUGH TV show spoilers, not mild like me mine.)
Finally, here some of the most acidic Dowager Countesses Lady Violet Crawly lines (the delightful Maggie Smith) shade throughout the years — this is a hoot:
Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)
The preview for Hobbs & Shaw looks like an exciting action comedy, but these two characters have a long backstory from the Fast and The Furious franchise. If you haven’t seen all, or any, of the F&F movies, then you’re probably wondering what you need to know about Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson/The Rock) and Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) to make sense of this spinoff.
Hobbs and Shaw, in a nutshell
Hobbs, played by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, is a government agent tasked with capturing the worst of the worst. He was originally hunting Vin Diesel, who plays Dominic “Dom” Toretto, but in due course they become allies.
Shaw, played by Jason Statham, was a British Secret Agent – think James Bond with a bad attitude — but was “retired” by the agency six years ago, and now works freelance. Statham’s character is introduced in the end credit scene of F&F6 as a man out for revenge for what Dom’s team did to his brother. Of course, over time, he also becomes an ally.
We get to see Hobbs and Shaw fight a few times, but more often than not they simply fire epic and comical insults at each other.
Basically, Hobbs & Shaw is a action comedy version of The Odd Couple. That’s all you need to know before seeing their movie.
However, if you want to get caught up on the entire Fast and The Furious franchise, then read on.
I’ll give you advice on which F&F movies are worth seeing, and a detailed synopsis of the ones you could decide to skip over.
You can see from the table below, the franchise really starts to pick up with Fast And Furious 5. If you don’t have the time, or stomach, to watch all eight movies first, you could just cherry pick from the best of them. Then read my synopsis of what you missed in the ones you skip over.
Note: This article gets long after you view the chart below, but it’s chock full of details you need to be up to speed for Hobbs and Shaw. We helpfully also tell you in the chart if there are extra scenes over the end credits.
Complete list of F&F movies
The Fast and the Furious
Fast 2 Furious
The Fast and the Furious Tokyo Drift
Fast And Furious
Fast and Furious 6
The Fate of the Furious
Hobbs & Shaw
Fast & Furious 9 (May 22, 2020)
*Audience score from Rottentomatoes.com user rating.
Fast and The Furious franchise overview:
Every movie in the F&F franchise revolves around stories that create problems that can, seemingly, only be solved with fast cars and wildly fantastic action. This translates into paper-thin plots. They do so many completely impossible things that you don’t blink twice when they do something that’s just insanely improbable.
However, as much as each movie tries to amp up the action, the success of the franchise hinges on likable characters. Vin Diesel as Dominic “Dom” Toretto isn’t a good guy in the classic sense. In the first movie he’s nothing more than a thief with a code: Robin Hood from the hood.
Fortunately, F&F hit gold when they cast Vin Diesel as Dom. Vin has the gravitas, something many actors lack, to become the center of attraction in a franchise.
Dom is similar to the Star Wars character Han Solo. Solo isn’t exactly a good guy. He did in fact shoot first, and he’s only in it for the money. But when push comes to shove, he does the right thing, and he’s always there for his friends.
2001: The Fast and the Furious This is the movie that kicked off the franchise, and perhaps Vin Diesel’s career. (Along with a little-known, now cult favorite science fiction movie that came out the previous year called Pitch Black.) I would recommend watching the 2001 F&F; not because it’s any good, but because it’s the foundation upon which the franchise rests. Better yet, try to watch this movie and the 4th (F&F 2009) back to back. Together they make one complete story and really develop the characters and relationships.
What you need to know if you skip it:
Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) is an undercover FBI agent trying to track down a gang of street racers stealing cargo off moving semi trucks. Brian befriends Dominic’s (Vin Diesel’s) sister, who works at a small cafe. The investigation leads Brian to believe a gang of Japanese bike racers is behind it, but ultimately he discovers that it is in fact Dom’s (Dominic’s) crew. The movie ends with Dom’s crew trying to rob a truck. The trucker has a gun and fights them off. Brian eventually has Dom trapped with the police moving in, but out of respect for Dom, Brian lets Dom get away.
Below is the full end scene of Fast and The Furious
where Brian lets Dom walk away.
Beyond the sloppy plot, the characters are well-defined. Dom commands a great deal of respect from everyone around him, including his adversaries. Brian is an FBI agent with complicated feelings about authority.
2003: Fast 2 Furious
By all means, you can skip this movie. It has no redeeming qualities. Vin Diesel doesn’t have so much as a cameo.
What you need to know if you skip it:
Brian has been kicked out of the FBI for letting Dom get away at the end of the previous movie. He’s in Miami when the FBI and DEA approach him to help with a case, by going undercover and bring down a drug cartel. Brian enlists the help of his longtime friend Roman (Tyrese Gibson). Roman is currently in prison, and blames Brian for it, but Brian convinces the FBI they have to pardon Roman if he helps with the investigation. Blah, blah, blah, car chase in the Florida Keys, and Brian and Roman capture the drug lord…and are BFFs again.
Below is the full “reunion scene/fight”
between Brian and Roman.
2006: The Fast and the Furious Tokyo Drift
On advice from my sister, I skipped this movie. This movie is somewhat controversial within the F&F fandom. Apparently the only thing you need to know is that the character Han is introduced, who comes back in F&F 5 and 6.
2009: Fast And Furious
Brian is back with the FBI, and needs Dom’s help to bring down a drug lord… Sorry, I nodded off a little bit there. Seriously, I just watched this movie last week, and I’m struggling to remember exactly what happened.
What you need to know if you skip it:
Dom is in hiding in Panama when he gets a call from his sister, Mia, who informs him that Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), who plays Dom’s girlfriend, has been murdered. Dom comes back to LA to help Brian (who’s back working with the FBI) to track down the mysterious drug lord who murdered his girlfriend. During the movie Mia, Dom’s sister, falls in love with Brian. Brian has loved her since the first movie.
The movie ends with Dom in custody. Brian pleads with the judge that Dom should be pardoned because he helped put a dangerous drug lord behind bars. The judge rules that one good deed doesn’t wipe out dozens of bad deeds, and sentences Dom to a minimum of 25 years in prison.
Cut to Dom on a bus, headed for a remote prison. Dom’s crew, including Brian, drive up on the bus. The movie ends.
New character: Gisele (Gal Gadot, who would go on to be cast as Wonder Woman) is introduced to the F&F franchise. She works for the drug lord, but turns out to have a soft spot for Dom.
2011: Fast 5
Hobbs is introduced in F&F5, a.k.a. Fast and Furious: The First Good One. He plays a government/military agent who is in charge of a team tasked with bringing in the worst of the worst criminals: he always gets his man. In F&F5 we get to see Dom (Vin) and Hobbs (Dwayne) go fist to fist. That’s worth the price of admission.
Below: (3:04) clip of the first Dom and Hobbs fight.
Prior to the final climactic action, Hobbs has captured Dom, Brian, and Letty and takes them to to the airport to bring them back to the USA. Suddenly, they are attacked by the antagonist’s men. Hobbs’ entire team is killed. Hobbs is wounded and, of course, Dom rescues him. Thus…setting up their mutual respect for each other in the movies to come.
Below: (4:08) “Dom rescues Hobbs” scene.
At the very end of the movie, Dom’s team has of course emerged victorious over the antagonist, but Hobbs “re-captured” Dom and Brian. Hobbs says, “You know I can’t let you two go. I ain’t made that way. The way I see it, you’ve earned yourself 24 hours… Come tomorrow, I will find you.” Dom smiles, “No, you won’t.”
Below: Hobbs re-captures Dom and Brian, but lets them go.
And thus begins the relationship between Hobbs and Dom. BTW, there’s a MUST see mid-extra credit scene in this movie.
Additionally, the character Elena is introduced in this movie. She is a police officer in Rio who acts as Hobbs’ local translator. She and Dom have a few scenes together that leads to her becoming Dom’s new girlfriend in the following movie. She plays a major role in the plot of The Fate of the Furious.
Below: (0:54) End credits scene in F&F 5.
2013: Fast and Furious 6
The Hobbs and Dom relationship builds in F&F6. Hobbs has a new assignment to bring in an international terrorist: Shaw. (No, not that Shaw. The younger brother of Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham)). Hobbs goes to Dom, who’s living in a non-extradition country, for help bringing in Shaw because they have a photo of Letty working for him.
Short aside: Letty “dies” in F&F4, or so we thought. Turns out she had amnesia and doesn’t remember anything about her past. Shaw, the younger, “rescued” her and now she works for him.
By movies’ end, Shaw is in critical condition in a hospital; Dom and Letty are back together, and the entire team has returned home to LA after getting pardoned for their help in bringing down Shaw.
In the extra credit scene we see Han, a member of Dom’s crew, racing in Tokyo. Suddenly, Han gets t-boned by another car, driven by Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham). Han’s car flips and lands upside down. Shaw gets out of his car and tosses a silver cross necklace on the street next to Han’s car then makes a phone call and says, ” Dominic Toretto, you don’t know me.” Han’s car explodes in the background. Shaw finishes, “But you’re about to.”
2015: Furious 7 <—-Read for our Review
That brings us to Furious 7 where… a lot of stuff happens. Let me explain… No, there is too much. Let me sum up. 😉 The movie opens with Shaw, the older brother played by Statham, visiting his younger brother in a hospital. Statham gives his comatose brother a speech about loyalty and brotherhood and revenge. Shortly afterward, we get to see a knockdown drag-out fight between Shaw (Statham) and Hobbs (The Rock). That ends with Shaw getting away, and Hobbs in a hospital room with a broken arm — he dove out of a 4th story window to save his partner.
Dom visits Hobbs in the hospital and gets the lowdown about Shaw: he’s a former British Special Agent that the powers that be decided to “retire” six years ago. He’s been a ghost ever since. Dom wants to find him and get revenge for Han, who died in the extra-credit scene of the previous movie. Oh yeah, and Shaw blew up Dom’s house in LA, almost killing the entire family. So yeah, there’s that.
At this point the story gets a little muddled.
Long story short: Dom’s crew ends up doing battle with a terrorist organization in LA, while Dom himself has a car fight with Shaw. During all this action Hobbs sees explosions from his hospital room and rips off his cast to join the fray. Dom nearly dies. Actually, he does die, but they bring him back. Shaw is captured and Hobbs delivers Shaw to a supermax prison.
Paul Walker Tribute
The actor Paul Walker, who plays Brian, tragically died in a car accident during the shooting of this movie — unrelated to the actual filming of the movie.
As far as the franchise is concerned, Brian has retired to family life.
Seriously, you should watch this one. It might be shorter than reading this labyrinthine synopsis. But in case you really can’t, here we go:
How do you turn a “bad guy” into a “good guy”? By introducing an even badder guy, or in this case, badder woman. Fate of the Furious introduces Charlize Theron as Cipher — a super secret pseudo-terrorist who has been behind the scenes, pulling strings, since F&F 2009.
The movie opens with Dom and Letty in Cuba. Cipher tries to recruit Dom to her team, but Dom turns her down. Cipher assures him that one way or another he’ll end up working for her.
Next we see Hobbs coaching his little girl’s soccer team. A government agent interrupts Hobbs, and tells him they have an important mission for him: to get a team together to take back a stolen EMP device that is in Berlin, Germany. But, this is all top-secret, hush hush stuff and if he, or any of his team, is captured, the US government will disavow any knowledge of his mission.
Of course, Hobbs makes a phone call to Dom and asks for his help. Dom says the team will meet him in Berlin. Cut directly to the team getting chased by terrorists, after stealing back the EMP device. Dom has the device strapped down in the back of his car. Everything seems to be going according to script, when Dom runs Hobbs off the road and takes off, alone, with the EMP. Everyone is like, WTF? 🙂
Dom drives his car onto a moving transport plane and delivers the device to Cipher.
Hobbs is captured and gets locked up in the very same prison where he locked Shaw up at the end of the previous movie. Oh, and they’re in neighboring cells, and do nothing but trash talk on how badly they’re going to whoop up on each other.
Of course the cell doors, all of them, open, and Hobbs and Shaw fight their way out of prison, to be met by the shadowy Mr. Nobody — the head of a super secret government agency, sort of like the IMF from Mission Impossible — played by Kurt Russell. (Mr. Nobody was introduced in Fast & Furious 7.)
Next we see Hobbs and Dom’s team in a conference room getting a briefing about Cipher from Mr. Nobody. No one has a clue why Dom double-crossed them in Berlin and stole the EMP, but they know something fishy is up, because that’s not Dom. Then Shaw walks into the room and everyone, especially Hobbs, is on high alert.
We learn Cipher came to Shaw first, to recruit him to her team. When he turned her down, she got his younger brother — and we all know how that turned out — see F&F6. Shaw wants to get revenge. Of course Hobbs and Shaw want nothing to do with each other, but Mr. Nobody reminds them that they are the only two people to ever track down Cipher so, like it or not, they’re going to work together.
There’s a very long blah, blah, blah about tracking down Cipher, when she and Dom blast their way into the building and steal the ultra powerful/secret computer program they used to track her.
Cipher and Dom are back on her plane, and this is where we find out the reason Dom is helping her is because Cipher has Elena: the police officer from Rio introduced back in F&F 5; she was Dom’s temporary love when he thought Letty was dead. Now, it turns out that Cipher not only has Elena but also… duh, Duh, DUH, their baby boy. (Ohhhhh, so that’s why Dom is helping Cipher. That makes sense now.)
The action jumps to New York City. Dom is there, seemingly alone, to steal a briefcase from a Russian ambassador. Dom’s team, plus Hobbs and Shaw, are there to stop him. What follows is a wickedly cool scene where Cipher uses her elite hacking skills to hack every car with automated driving capability in a 2 mile radius, essentially creating a zombified demolition derby.
Prior to the action getting started, Dom sneaks into a restaurant to meet with Shaw’s mother, played by none other than Dame Helen Mirren. Dom is there for help, but we don’t learn the details until later in the movie.
We also get treated to a bonding scene between Hobbs and Shaw, where Hobbs reads off a list of commendations Shaw received while working for British Intelligence, before he became a traitor. Of course their bonding scene ends with Hobbs saying to Shaw, “When this is all over I’m going to knock your teeth so far down your throat you’ll need to stick a toothbrush up your ass to brush ’em.” (This is how real men say to each other, “I love you, bro.”)
After Dom gets the Russian ambassador’s briefcase (Which contains the super secret recipe for an ancient Russian version of Coca Cola; just kidding, it has nuclear launch codes.)
Okay, wait just a second. Why would a Russian ambassador, in NYC, have a briefcase containing nuclear launch codes? Please, don’t ask. I already said, these movies have plots thinner than that cheap, see-through toilet paper you find in truck stops. Just roll with it and remember, these movies are about action and bad ass characters.
In the ensuing mess about 10,000 cars get destroyed. Dom gets away with the briefcase, and in the process kills Shaw. (Of course Shaw isn’t actually dead, but Cipher needs to think he is.)
Now Cipher has the ultimate hacking program and launch codes for nuclear missiles. Now all she needs is the submarine that contains the missiles and total world domination will be hers.
(Okay, we’re almost done here.)
Since Dom hesitated during one of his tasks, Cipher has to punish him by killing Elena right in front of him. Everyone converges on the Russian base where the nuclear sub is docked. Cipher hacks the sub and launches it, because sure, that’s possible.
Next: A chase scene on the ice between the Russian military and Dom’s team. Then the nuclear sub, hacked by Cipher, is able to plow through the ice and catch up with sports cars, because the nuclear sub has been upgraded with a NOX turbo injector. (It wasn’t, but I’m surprised the writers didn’t add that.)
But wait, what’s that? Two men wearing personal jetpacks flying through the air? Who could that be? It’s both Shaw brothers? But of course it is. They catch up to Cipher’s plane, remotely open the rear door, fly in and take over the plane. Elder Shaw goes forward to save Dom’s baby boy, while Younger Shaw goes for the cockpit. There’s a hilarious action scene of Elder Shaw fighting against Cipher’s men while he carries Dom’s baby boy in a basket.
Once Shaw(s) have rescued Dom’s baby, then Dom is able to rejoin his team. Dom saves the day in epic fashion.
Shaw has Cipher trapped, but she grabs a parachute and jumps out of the plane. (She was wearing a light jacket and jumped out of a plane, over the Arctic ice, at 10,000 feet. But I’m sure she’ll be fine. Bad guys/gals are immune to hypothermia.)
If there’s one thing more ubiquitous in a F&F movie than a NOX (Nitrous OXide) booster, it’s a long denouement, usually involving a dinner table. At the end of the movie Mr. Nobody offers Hobbs his old position back, but Hobbs turns him down to stay home with his daughter. Obviously, this will be resolved in the Hobbs & Shaw movie.
Did you follow all this? Maybe print it out and bring it along to see Hobbs & Shaw. 😉
As you may know there, is a controversy that surrounds The Lion King. The fact that it possibly stole its entire movie from one called Kimba the White Lion is one ting…but we’re not talking about that here. We are going to be talking about how the Lion King is basically Hamlet with lions.
And yes, I mean the Shakespeare Hamlet too, and not some play or movie about a baby pig. So if you don’t know Hamlet like you should, here’s a brief reminder:
The king has a brother and that brother kills the king. The king prior to death had a son. The son now has to kill his uncle and reclaim the throne.
There’s the very short and sweet reminder of Hamlet. (Sparknotes should take notes on how it’s done.) Either way, today I’m going to be comparing the Lion King (which is loosely based on Hamlet) to Hamlet (1996), which is essentially a word for word re-imagining. Obviously, this battle is pretty even. Let’s compare the two and see how they stack up to each other.
First things first, Scar and Claudius and drastically different characters for the better of each story. Scar, I would say, is a dictator, where as Claudius is a king. Claudius is very methodical and punctual with his words and actions, where as Scar when he gets power runs everything downhill. Scar doesn’t think about the betterment of all his people, but Claudius does. That said, it does mean that it’s more satisfying to see Scar lose in the end, than it is to see Claudius lose.
But if I had to give it up to which movie killed off its villain better, I would go with Hamlet.
The Love Interest—
We have Nala and Ophelia. Nala is basically a side character that only really serves for one music number, and to push the main character to fulfill their destiny. Weirdly enough, Ophelia has a musical number too. Nala is very basic — interesting and better than most side characters in movies — but still basic. Ophelia starts out as a confused girl who then just snaps to crazy. It’s kind of jarring, but she dies shortly after, so it’s all good.
Weird one to put in, but I wanted to mention it. In Hamlet, ghost dad simply acts as like a Macguffin to inform Hamlet about the foul play in his death. But ghost dad in Lion King acts as a guiding light for Simba. When Simba is confused and unsure, ghost dad comes in to guide him in the right direction. Ghost dad in Hamlet just yells at his son to avenge his murder.
The main man/lion. I’m going to keep this bareboned. Simba is a scared, confused, yet growing character who realizes what needs to happen, and grows to become the lion he needs to be. Hamlet just kinda goes from mad to slightly insane, then back to mad.
Kenneth Branagh still brings many complex emotions through his acting, but the character as a whole has just about those three emotions, looking back on it.
The queens are completely different characters in these movies. In Hamlet she is a woman who loves her son, marries a murderer willingly, and falls victim to the king’s evil ploys against Hamlet. In Lion King the queen is not really seen ,but from what we do see she is forced into marriage, doesn’t put up with the “king’s” rule, but still loves her son.
Overall, The Lion King vs Hamlet–
In the end, if I honestly had to say which of these movies is better, that would depend on who you are.
If you’re an absolute film nerd and want to see something beautifully done, you can watch both of these. If you mainly love Shakespeare, then watch Hamlet, since it’s more true to the original tale.
But let’s face it, you’re not just watching 4 hours worth of movie regardless of any high praise I could give it, if you’re a true fan of good films.
My name is Nick and I got an undying love for movies and the process of making them. I love horror, comedy, action, and all movies in between. If you have any questions you can reach me @LightCameraNick on twitter.