This May, Fast and Furious foisted their fifth installment of the franchise upon us, entitled Fast Five. Originally emerging as a response to a growing global trend of enthusiasts tuning their imported whips to previously inconceivable levels of performance, Fast and Furious quickly became the face and then the ghost of that movement as it waned due to the dip in the economy. The first film fueled the fire, the next two isolated hardcore fans from casual ones, the fourth won everyone back and the fifth now reigns as the best of the brood.
Almost 50 years ago, a similar film fittingly arrived in drive-ins across the country, circa 1965. Completely coming out of left field, Faster Pussycat, Kill! Kill! spoke of fast cars and even faster women, and was one of the first to showcase both with female leads. This cult classic has inspired names of rock bands and numerous songs and the cinematography has since had countless photographic and cinematic homages. In fact, it’s rumored Quentin Tarentino intends to shoot a remake, starring none other than porn star Tera Patrick. Unfortunately, the film’s legendary cult queen, Tura Satana, left us this past February and won’t be able to make a cameo.
We’ve got two pit crews in this race to supremacy, one from dude town, one from ladyland. Each are plagued with greed, loose alliances and are always on the lookout for the long arm of the law. One brings the guns, the other the cans. Only one can walk away a winner. So crack open the crankcase and break out the Royal Purple! It’s time to juice up the NOS, light up the tree, roast the tires and put the pedal to the metal in a high octane fight to the finish line.
Fast Five. What two ingredients always ensure it’s gonna be a great party? Strippers and blow. The pill-popping Faster P girls bring both, but their insatiable lust and greed also bring deadly trouble. When girls try to be more gangsta than boys, that means we have to go come up with something else. Frankly, we’re just not that inventive. Besides, the Faster P girls don’t really have room for dudes, whereas Fast Fivers are family first and ladies are included. Onyx said it best, “Let the boys be boys!”
Pussycat. Faster P is a simple premise intellectualized, thanks to insightful dialogue that alleviates boredom with quick-witted quips questioning morality. Anytime you watch a B-movie and have to pull out the dictionary, you know it’ll stand the test of time.
Fast Five. Sorry ladies (and Porschephiles)! In a drag race it’s tough to beat American iron. In this case, we’re talking about a four-cylinder, air-cooled, rear-engine, rear-wheel-drive kraut-mobile with less than a hundred horses. Since it’s lightweight and made to handle, a street race or race track might be a fairer fight, but Dom has never lost a race (no spoilers here!), so it wouldn’t really matter.
Pussycat. Before you go ballistic, it could easily be argued that Fast 5 has a much prettier cast. However, we merely get glimmers of their sex appeal in a sea of testosterone. The hottest scenes are 30 secs or less. Meanwhile, throughout Faster P, director Russ Meyer finds new and inventive ways to expose female flesh, and you’re staring at it THE ENTIRE TIME! Add to that the fact that each shot was masterfully conceived, every scene being a new composition showcasing the female form and compounding the sexual tension between all the characters. With the possibility of Eva Mendez and Michelle Rodriguez returning, we sincerely hope FF6 will take a cue from her forebears.
Pussycat. Dom Torretto is big and bad. In a straight up brawl, no doubt he’d take Varla down. But Varla killed a man with her bare hands, so she can’t be ruled out as a contender. And, she’s supremely devious. She knows the only way to bring a guy like that down is with a bullet, a multidudenous pile-on or an act of deception with orders to self-destruct. This ‘pussycat’ would choose the latter, infiltration via the three H’s: Head, Heart and Hard-on. First, Varla will mess with his head, this confusion will manifest itself into a masochistic form of desire, which will consume his heart. Plaguing his every action with the thought of her, he’ll have a hard-on only for her. His will is bent, hers stays rigid. Once realized, Dom will pursue vengefully aggressive sex—intercourse seemingly his only recourse. Too bad for him she likes it that way.
One’s stacked, the other packed. Two anti-heroes with charisma to spare. Fast and Furious has surprised everyone to become a lucrative franchise, but at 2 to 3, it didn’t have quite enough to unseat a legend. Here’s hoping the 6th installment will do just that. In the meantime, kick back with a Singapore Sling and await Tarantino’s attempt at remaking a masterpiece.
Dedicated in loving memory to the cult classic queen, Tura Satana.
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