mars is the closest it's been to earth since the late 80's, and i want to catch a glimpse of the red planet through the telescope (in all it's 8x larger than the last time i saw it glory!) but the weather is totally not cooperating! everyday it's overcasted. i'm sure amateur astronomers everywhere in the greater boston area are cursing the sky every night. prognosis doesn't look so good for this coming week either (surprise, surprise). cloudy, cloudy, cloudy. one day when i retire i want to move to someplace (or maybe have a second home) in the world where there are clear skies on most nights and i sleep underneath a canopy of stars. arizona. that's a good place. open and dry and nice stargazing weather. until then i will just have to be patient. <gritting teeth>

after watching this movie i just wanted to get myself a car and drag race. i watched all the race scenes with clenched teeth and fists, vicariously feeding off of the on-screen depiction of speed. the fast and the furious paints an interesting world of underground drag racing. something about fast cars and hot chicks that gets the heart pumping, at least the male heart. i didn't understand a lot of the drag racing jargon, but i reveled in the unabashed celebration of men with their machines, i felt a strong connection.


  • it's kind of surprising that in a movie about drag racing, the car of choice aren't traditional muscle cars or sports cars, but rather these suped up coupes. the cars themselves look wimpy on the outside, but i guess it's the "nos" on the inside that really matters.
  • jordana brewster plays mia, the sister of dominic (vin diesel). jordana brewster use to be the next hot young thang in hollywood, but like gretchen mol, her star didn't quite keep up with the hollywood hype. regardless, it's nice to see her making a comeback. one thing though: maybe she should think about plucking her eyebrows. every single scene that she was in, i was just staring at them. maybe she did it on purpose, to go along with her character. let's just hope in her next movie she'll tweak those brows a little bit.
  • michelle rodriguez is perfect in the role of letty, dominic's gf and member of the racing crew. there's something about a girl playing in a boy's world (i.e. drag racing) that makes her really hot. although letty's dominic's gf, she's not a "drag chick" -- she can hold her own both on the race course and in the garage. i think it was perfect casting to get michelle to play letty, cause she's the kind of girl you know who can kick most boy's ass. you got to love that.
  • there was a real multiculturality about this movie. maybe because it's set in california, but the drag racing world that's depicted transcends cultural/racial barriers. if you're a young and reckless male (with some spending money and the hardware know-ho to boot), the drag racing world welcomes you. whites, blacks, asians, hispanics, they're all represented on this race course. now you think about professional auto racing, and to me that seems like a very white sport. if only nascar can be as progressive as underground drag racing!
  • the movie's got a great soundtrack, i'm tempted to buy it if i can't find most of online. so far i've been pretty impressed with the movie soundtracks this summer. i remember swordfish has a pretty good soundtrack as well.
  • when are they going to make a racing movie about cruiser bikes, with the same treatment as the fast and the furious? i'd pay big bucks to see that.
spoilers: a few dangling issues at the end of the movie: does brian ever get back together with mia? i know she feels betrayed because he revealed he's an undercover cop, but are those two kids going to make it in this crazy world? since brian saved harry's life, will those two guys resolve their differences and become friends? the finale with the asian gang members on bikes versus drag racing cars was totally unbelievable in a bad way. dirt bikes versus a muscle car? come on! also, a million bullets fly and brian's car is not damaged at all, not even a scratch on the windshield, while parked cars explode in a shower of shredded metal and glass. those gang members must have lousy aim, that's the only explanation. of course brian's car has to escape the pursuit unscathed so that he and dominic can drag race one last time in the real finale.

i would without a doubt recommend this movie. definitely a guy movie, but there are stuff in there for the ladies as well (namely, vin diesel and paul walker, and if you have a taste for asian, rick yune). definitely better than tomb raider, on the same level as swordfish. if you understand the need for speed, then you will totally like this film.

next weekend: a.i.!