Review: Momoa saves ‘Fast X’ from speeding off into numbness

This image released by Universal Pictures shows Vin Diesel in a scene from "Fast X." (Peter Mountain/Universal Pictures via AP)
This image released by Universal Pictures shows Vin Diesel in a scene from "Fast X." (Peter Mountain/Universal Pictures via AP)

Fans and critics may disagree over when exactly the "Fast & Furious" franchise jumped the shark, but there is only one correct answer: When the Pontiac Fiero went into space.

Weightless and violating every physical law, the floating car -- tasked with bumping a satellite in the ninth installment -- was the very symbol of how bloated and crazed the once-plucky series had become. There really was no way down after that.

And yet we have come to 10, part of a planned series of films finally saying goodbye. "Fast X" is, thankfully, shackled to Earth's gravity -- sometimes tenuously, it must be said -- but it has become almost camp, as if it breathed in too much of its own fumes.

"Fast X" reaches into the fifth movie -- 2011's "Fast Five" -- for the seeds to tell a new story. In a memorable moment five movies ago, Vin Diesel's Dom Toretto wrecked a bad guy and his team on a bridge in Rio de Janeiro. Little did we know then, but that bad guy had a son who survived and now, years later, vows vengeance. That's it. That's the plot.

The film would not be near enough as fun without Jason Momoa, who plays the bad guy's son as a full-on flamboyant psycho, licking a knife clean after killing someone with it and painting the toenails of a dead victim as he displays the corpse in a demented garden party. "Never accept death when suffering is owed," he says.

row from "Pirates of the Caribbean." Momoa has a penchant

"Fast X," a Universal Pictures release, is rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America for intense sequences of violence and action, language and some suggestive material. Running time: 134 minutes. Three stars out of four.

photo This image released by Universal Pictures shows Vin Diesel, left, and Daniela Melchior in a scene from "Fast X." (Peter Mountain/Universal Pictures via AP)
photo This image released by Universal Pictures shows Vin Diesel in a scene from "Fast X." (Universal Pictures via AP)
photo This image released by Universal Pictures shows a scene from "Fast X." (Giulia Parmigiani/Universal Pictures via AP)
photo This image released by Universal Pictures shows, clockwise from left, Michelle Rodriguez, Sung Kang, Nathalie Emmanuel, Vin Diesel, Leo Abelo Perry, Rita Morena, Jordana Brewster, Ludacris and Tyrese Gibson in a scene from "Fast X." (Peter Mountain/Universal Pictures via AP)
photo This image released by Universal Pictures shows Jason Momoa in a scene from "Fast X." (Giulia Parmigiani/Universal Pictures via AP)
photo This image released by Universal Pictures shows Vin Diesel, left, and Daniela Melchior in a scene from "Fast X." (Peter Mountain/Universal Pictures via AP)

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