From the very beginning of the franchise, the Fast and Furious movies have featured all sorts of remarkable and insane tech that has helped make the seemingly never-ending adventures of Dominic Toretto and company such a wild ride. Everything from police-deployed EMP-based harpoon launcher in 2 Fast 2 Furious to the state-of-the-art God’s Eye in Furious 7 has entertained and confused fans of the franchise, and it doesn’t look like this trend will stop anytime soon.
As we look toward F9 and the movie’s use of giant magnet cars to cars with freaking jet engines, now is the perfect time to take a step back and dive into all the wild straight up ridiculous technology that has either been used as a plot device or just a one-off moment that defies logic, just like a lot of things about the Fast and Furious franchise.
The ESD Harpoon Launcher (2 Fast 2 Furious)
Okay, I could have started off talking about the Panasonic DVD players and VCR/TV combos that are at the center of The Fast and The Furious, but since that tech is so antiquated we’ll skip over the first film in the franchise and instead turn our focus to 2 Fast 2 Furious and the ESD Harpoon Launcher, which appears not once but twice throughout the 2003 sequel. Let’s break down this insane piece of Fast and Furious tech.
We first see the ESD Harpoon Launcher in action when a U.S. Customers officer fires the device at Brian O’Connor’s (Paul Walker) car, shutting down on all the electronics and rendering the car useless. Not to be outdone, director John Singleton brings the device back later in the movie, only this time the device is partially defective, allowing O’Connor to pull it off and evade capture.
Although the tech wasn’t around at the time of the film’s release in the summer of 2003, a similar device has been invented in the years following, only instead of shooting a metal claw into the side of a car, the RF Safe-Stop uses radio beams, according to The Engineer.
God’s Eye (Furious 7, The Fate Of The Furious)
God’s Eye, the hyper-advanced hacking program created by Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel) is probably the greatest MacGuffin of the Fast and Furious movies since its introduction in Furious 7, one that needs to be kept out of the wrong hands at all cost. The program can be used to hack any type of technology that uses a camera, giving whoever is controlling it the power to gather information on anyone and everyone on the planet no matter where they are.
We first hear of God’s Eye in Furious 7 when the Toretto crew is tasked with finding Ramsey and the device for Mr. Nobody (Kurt Russell) who will help them find and stop Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) in return. Bouncing around the world in one logic-defying stunt after another, the crew at one point rescue Ramsey (hello, newest member of the team) before taking the program and physical God’s Eyes device away from mercenary and terrorist Mose Jakande (Djimon Hounsou) who plans to us it to track down and kill his enemies.
Cipher’s ‘Zero Day Exploit’ Car Hack (The Fate Of The Furious)
The Fate of the Furious gives us a double-whammy of absurd technology when Cipher uses God’s Eye to track down a Russian government official in possession of a nuclear football while also using a “Zero Day Exploit” to hack hundreds of cars in New York City, giving your team the ability to control them like a horde of zombies.
What follows is a ridiculous and ridiculously fun scene, even for Fast and Furious movies’ standards. With the streets of Big Apple as her personal playground, the cyberterrorist does an inconceivable amount of collateral damage in her attempt to kickstart a nuclear standoff, and boy if it isn’t the best way to show just how off the rails the franchise has gotten in recent installments. And even though the idea of hacking hundreds of cars and driving them all around a city like they’re connected by a hive-mind seems far-fetched, the eye-catching stunt cost a pretty penny.
Brixton Lore’s Cybernetic Enhancements (Hobbs And Shaw)
The first (and for now, only) Fast and Furious spinoff Hobbs and Shaw not only left behind much of the cast from previous films (only Dwayne Johnson’s Luke Hobbs and Jason Statham’s Deckard Shaw remain), but it went full sci-fi action thriller with the introduction of the “Black Superman” Brixton Lore (Idris Elba) and his cybernetic enhancements. The former MI6 field agent who has a history with Shaw, Lore will stop at nothing to help the techno-terrorist organization Eteon steal The Snowflake (more on that next) and carry out the group’s diabolical plan.
With his various cybernetic enhancements, Brixton Lore has superhuman strength, extreme durability that allows him to fall from a building and not miss a step, and unmatched hand-to-hand combat skills that push Hobbs and Shaw to their limits. Oh, and he also has enhanced vision like he’s terminator or something. Too bad we never got to see Dominic Toretto, the franchise’s original superhero, take on Lore.
The Snowflake (Hobbs And Shaw)
At the center of Hobbs and Shaw’s plot is The Snowflake, a programmable super-virus that originally started out as an effective way to distribute vaccines before Eteon turned it into a means to wipe out half of humanity, allowing only the strong to survive. The virus is seen in the beginning of the movie when Hattie Shaw (Vanessa Kirby) attempts to steal The Snowflake for MI6 before injecting herself with it to prevent Brixton Lore, Eteon’s cybernetic agent from getting his hands on it.
At the end of the day, Hattie Shaw is able to remove The Snowflake from her body and the virus is given to the CIA. But this is just the beginning of lethal pathogens as it is revealed in the film’s final moments that a deadlier pathogen is being cooked up.
Who knows what kind of tech we’ll see in F9, Fast and Furious 10, and beyond, but if you want to go back and check out how far the franchise has come, you can watch all of the Fast and Furious movies streaming.
Philip grew up in Louisiana (not New Orleans) before moving to St. Louis after graduating from Louisiana State University-Shreveport. When he's not writing about movies or television, Philip can be found being chased by his three kids, telling his dogs to stop yelling at the mailman, or yelling about professional wrestling to his wife. If the stars properly align, he will talk about For Love Of The Game being the best baseball movie of all time.
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