Weekend Movie Review: 'Hobbs & Shaw' And 'Luce'

The wait is over for “Fast & Furious” fans! “Hobbs & Shaw” lights up the big screen this weekend, starring Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham as an unlikely pair of sparring frenemies who must set their personal differences aside to neutralize a menacing global threat.

Also coming to theaters near you is the piercing drama, “Luce,” starring Kelvin Harrison Jr. as a 17-year-old prodigy shaken to the core because of his parents (Naomi Watts and Tim Roth) and his high school teacher (Octavia Spencer).

Here’s what to see and what to skip this weekend:

Movies Out This Weekend

“Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw” — Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham; directed by David Leitch

Remember Luke Hobbs and Deckard Shaw in “Furious 7” and “The Fate of the Furious”? Well, the two alpha males are back for another round of sparring in the “Fast and Furious” universe with their very own spinoff, “Hobbs & Shaw.”

In David Leitch’s latest espionage thriller, Dwayne Johnson is back as Hobbs, the U.S. federal agent who flexes his muscles with so much gravitas. Also back is Jason Statham as Shaw, the mercenary who has a shadowy history working as a British intelligence officer. Together, these natural-born adversaries will unite to save the world from a menacing deadly threat.

The new movie opens with an explosive action sequence involving Brixton Lore (Idris Elba), a leather-clad man who is immune to bullets. This villain is out on a mission to steal a lethal bio-engineered virus that can liquefy human organs and make them robotic. However, an MI6 agent, Hattie (Vanessa Kirby), gets in Brixton’s way, and winds up in possession of the virus.

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Complications arise when Hattie administers the virus to herself. Why? It turns out that Hattie is Shaw’s estranged younger sister— and Hobbs may just have a crush on her. Then, there’s Shaw’s incarcerated mom (Helen Mirren), whom he hasn’t seen over the years.

It’s only a matter of time before the news media brand Hobbs and Shaw as dangerous fugitives, sending them to their global escapades from the icy streets of Moscow to the sunny shores of Samoa, where Hobbs re-visits his Samoan roots.

See it. “Hobbs & Shaw” brings good CGI-action-heavy escapism, nothing more, nothing less. Just make sure to leave your thinking hats at home.

Watch the trailer:

“Luce” — Kelvin Harrison Jr., Naomi Watts, Octavia Spencer; directed by Julius Onah

Race and privilege collide with expectations and trust in Julius Onah’s film adaptation of JC Lee’s off-broadway play, “Luce.”

Kelvin Harrison Jr. plays the titular character of Luce, a black 17-year-old prodigy, who, at age 7, was adopted from the war-torn country of Eritria where he was trained to kill as a member of a gun-wielding army of child soldiers.

His parents, both white, Dr. Amy Edgar (Naomi Watts) and Peter Edgar (Tim Roth), a financier, just can’t stop doting on their academically stellar son. After all, Amy and Peter have showered their son with unconditional love through years of therapy. But when Luce’s high school teacher, Harriet Wilson (Octavia Spencer), searches his locker and finds a bag of illegal fireworks, the Edgars’ lives will be upended, forcing them to cast doubt on whether they truly know their son and if Luce has truly healed from the scars of war.

See it. Poignant and incisive, the movie is on fire with outstanding performances and deft direction.

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