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A Look Back At The Millennium’s First Franchise

EJ Moreno celebrates twenty years of The Quick and the Livid…


Nothing screams the 00’s greater than The Quick and the Livid. With its booming bling-era hip-hop soundtrack, the insane colourful racing vehicles, and our patron saint Vin Diesel, you’ll be able to’t encapsulate 2001 higher than this. As odd as chances are you’ll assume that sounds, this can be a excellent time capsule of a singular popular culture second.

However the Quick and Livid didn’t keep in 2001; hell, the 2000s decade couldn’t even comprise it. This one film has slowly grown into a large cinematic juggernaut, a franchise that now sits at a worldwide gross of almost $6 billion. Eight movies provide up an more and more wilder look into the world of Dominic Toretto and his crew.

How did this little road racing movie flip right into a film occurring its ninth entry and probably going to house? Let’s look again at this 2001 gem, The Quick and the Livid.


this “Level Break with vehicles” plot is ridiculous when you consider the excessive stakes drama that now consumes the franchise. This primary entry follows an undercover cop that should uncover who’s behind a string of unknown vehicle hijackers. They’re stealing DVD gamers prefer it’s a billion {dollars} sitting in a financial institution vault, and it’s so adorably easy in comparison with no matter reality-defying stunts they’re doing now.

However that’s the sweetness on this movie. It’s a well-known plot informed by way of a brand-new lens and provides up a take a look at a sub-culture that nobody tapped into on the time. Avenue racing has been round for the reason that hot-rod days of the 50s, but it surely had grown into one thing wildly completely different by the millennium. Truthfully, the Want For Velocity video video games deserve the credit score, however this movie pushed this model into the mainstream. You had a complete underground motion represented on the large display screen, and it obtained properly by its followers. Perhaps too good as experiences of unlawful road racing elevated throughout this time.

Nonetheless, for the primary couple of movies, you noticed the world of hip-hop, vehicles, and “bro” tradition within the highlight. Whereas Quick 5 would firmly transfer the franchise in a brand new course, the primary movies had been love letters and firestarters.


If you happen to take a look at 2001, it was the start of a brand new period. Vogue was evolving, music was louder, and Hondas changed the Mustangs. One thing wanted to seize this era in popular culture, and generally cinema is the very best place for that. how The Breakfast Membership screams the 80s, The Quick and the Livid is that for the noughties.

Let’s transfer away from the aura and the mystique because the precise movie is one thing that also impresses me. Not as a result of it has mind-blowing results or a ground-breaking plot, however there’s audacity within the filmmaking. You see the filmmakers, which incorporates everybody from the actors to the manufacturing designers making daring selections.

For a pure leisure movie, nobody in The Quick and the Livid is phoning it in. And that features the younger forged of actors with the brightest futures forward of them. Whereas virtually none of their first movies, this was the primary time that roles felt designed to raise their standing – a present an actor sees of their goals.


The late Paul Walker shines in certainly one of his first starring roles. He’s a pleasure to look at, along with his smile feeling just like the purest factor. The Brian O’Conner character is the guts and soul right here and would grow to be what bonded these creators eternally. Walker turned a star after this movie, and you’ll see it throughout each flip he takes right here.

Michelle Rodriguez as Letty Ortiz and Jordana Brewster as Mia Toretto go above and past to make these normally paper-thin feminine motion roles extra fleshed out. Rodriguez as Letty impressed a technology of kick-ass women, providing up simply as a lot magnificence as she had brashness. Mia Toretto is a girlfriend and sister character that seems like she has extra layers than these labels. Mia is a personality along with her desires and company. These are little issues now, however again in 2001, these girls had been revolutions.

Then you could have the person of the hour, Vin Diesel. Quick and the Livid – the movie and the franchise – can be nothing with out this gruff human being. His ardour for seeing these movies succeed has pushed it to its international phenomenon-level, but it surely began with this little race automotive that would. He will get loads of flack as an actor, however he’s charming and has such vital power on this movie. It’s like he is aware of the longer term that lies forward and is aware of he might be cocky for future Vin right here.


Earlier than we dove into Pirates of the Caribbean or Michael Bay’s Transformers, the 2000s didn’t have a franchise. It will take Vin Diesel and his artistic groups to vary all of that, changing into what it’s clearly probably the most authentic group of blockbusters of that technology. There’s no prior comedian e book, theme park experience, or 80s cartoon; these movies immediately responded to its period and the tradition. Cinema within the millennium can be misplaced with out this, particularly the primary half of the last decade.

Between 2001-2006, Quick and the Livid and its wild universe started to take form. The primary three entries are all dramatically completely different from one another, with the road racing component connecting them. However there’s worldbuilding right here, seeds planted for the expansive universe that Torretto and firm make up now. The 2009 entry would put them onto one other stage, feeling like a solution to the MCU budding worlds and different blockbusters. After which, the 2010s actually put them into a distinct stratosphere and noticed this grow to be a nonetheless uncommon billion-dollar franchise.


As I write this text, I hear two loud vehicles dashing away with enhanced mufflers within the distance. That proper there’s a fraction of the influence from The Quick and the Livid. There’s no denying that this can be a movie that I significantly take pleasure in, with my emotions coming off undeniably biased. However there’s benefit to that insanity; this significantly holds up.

2000s nostalgia is about to roll in onerous in the course of the subsequent few years, and we’ll look again at movies like this when prepping for noughties-themed events. When millennials want an ideal playlist to look again at some forgotten membership hits, scroll by way of this soundtrack. And earlier than you roll your eyes, this period is coming again, and you’ll quickly see it in all places. Brush off that Ed Hardy quickly!

2001’s The Quick and the Livid launched a franchise and eternally terribly modified the business. Just like the little engine that would, you noticed this movie sequence go from this virtually indie darling to a blockbuster juggernaut that would tackle Jurassic Park or a superhero movie.

Now, crack open a Vin Diesel-approved beer, prep the NOS, and race to see this once more.

EJ Moreno


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