All 11 Fast & Furious Movies Ranked
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: There’s a new Fast & Furious movie in theaters and everyone is talking about it. The Fast & Furious franchise has been a part of our lives for 22 years, evolving from a story about street racers into one of the biggest and most successful film franchises in the world. The Fast Family has become a staple of franchise filmmaking in Hollywood, boasting the most diverse ongoing cast around and consistently pushing the boundaries of how crazy we think action movies can be.
Fast X, the latest entry, is the 11th film in the franchise and once again showing that Toretto strength at the global box office. With every new Fast & Furious movie, the franchise’s fans take the opportunity to watch back through all of the saga’s ups and downs, reliving the story of Dominic Toretto and his beloved family.
The release of Fast X also offers a great opportunity to look through the entire Fast & Furious franchise to see how the films stack up against one another. Is the original 2001 movie as good as the bombastic sequels from the 2010s? Is the drifting in Tokyo as good as the drag racing in Los Angeles? Which of the Fast movies is the best?
There’s no better time than the present to try and answer some of those questions. Let’s approach the Fast & Furious franchise a quarter-mile at a time, and see which movie comes out on top.
11. Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw (2019)
The first Fast Family offshoot is far and away the worst film in the franchise. While it had the potential to be a fun experiment centered around two of the Fast Saga’s most popular side characters, it ends up being nothing more than one of Dwayne Johnson’s vanity projects.
There’s no life to the story here, most of the jokes don’t land, and it’s void of the heart that makes every other Fast & Furious movie enjoyable. Above all else, not a single thing in Hobbs & Shaw looks real, save for the actors. Yes, the Fast movies have a lot of crazy, unrealistic stunts and set pieces, but they all exist in a real world that feels somewhat authentic and tactile. From start to finish, every second of Hobbs & Shaw looks like it was shot in front of a green screen and populated with computer-generated images. The cars don’t even feel real.
At least Vanessa Kirby and Idris Elba are having fun.
10. Fast & Furious (2009)
The fourth film in the Fast Saga is the first one to return to the serious roots of the original, it just doesn’t quite know how to balance that serious tone with the bigger, wilder world that the franchise has become known for. The result is melodramatic and messy, a movie that feels way longer than it actually is. It also gets a major knock for writing off both Letty and Han – two of the franchise’s best characters – within the first 15 minutes.
Fast & Furious doesn’t quite stack up to the other entries in the middle of the franchise, but it is a very important part of the Fast Saga’s history. Yes, it’s messy, but this fourth installment laid the groundwork for everything that has happened since. Justin Lin helped bring the characters and cars into the future, setting the stage for the best era of Fast & Furious movies.
9. 2 Fast 2 Furious (2003)
When it comes to story and character development, 2 Fast 2 Furious is near the bottom of the barrel for this franchise. It has aged very poorly, when it comes to both the look of the film and the content itself.
That said, John Singleton is too good a filmmaker to keep his lone Fast film from being a lot of fun. He films the race sequences with a sleek style and a tremendous eye for detail. It’s always clear what’s happening and the adrenaline stays at a high level throughout.
Every fan’s mileage varies when it comes to Roman Pearce, and 2 Fast 2 Furious is the heaviest Roman movie of them all. If you love Roman, this one probably falls a little higher on your personal list.
8. F9 (2021)
F9 is possibly the biggest and boldest movie of the franchise in terms of the action pieces. It’s also the Fast film that proves bigger isn’t always better. The magnet chase that was the focal point of all the trailers is underwhelming and it’s difficult at times to even remember what happened in the third act (outside of Roman and Tej finally taking the franchise to space).
Despite its numerous and very obvious flaws, F9 also has some things really working in its favor. All of Dom’s backstory scenes are well executed, giving us some great scenes from Michael Rooker and JD Pardo. And this movie has John Cena, the best wrestler-turned-actor to partake in the Fast & Furious franchise.
The biggest thing F9 has going for it is the long-awaited justice for Han. Bringing characters back from the dead is such a cliche, but it’s hard to care too much about that when you see Sung Kang on the screen again. Not only does Han come back, but his return scenes in Tokyo are the best of the whole movie.
7. Fast X (2023)
You can take a lot of the criticisms of F9 and apply them directly to its successor. Fast X is doing entirely too much, consistently pulling itself down by the weight of its own ambition. The already bloated cast is joined by several newcomers, assuring that hardly anyone is going to get the screen time necessary to tell a complete story.
There’s one thing Fast X has that F9 doesn’t, though, and his name is Jason Momoa.
Dante (Momoa), who is essentially the Fast Saga’s Joker, is far and away the best villain in the entire franchise. It’s not even close. He brings a chaotic and delightful energy to every single scene, finally giving the Torettos a memorable adversary that won’t join them for Coronas in a couple of movies. There’s an actual scene in Fast X where Momoa has an entire conversation with a couple of dead bodies, taping their eyes open so they can look at him and painting their toenails while he rambles. It’s deranged and deeply hilarious, one of the most memorable things to happen in any Fast & Furious film.
6. Furious 7 (2015)
I’m sure a lot of people have this movie significantly higher on their personal Fast & Furious rankings, and I totally understand why. Furious 7 is the “Goodbye, Paul Walker” movie.
Walker tragically passed away before production on Furious 7 was complete, leading the Family to turn the ending of the film into a memorial for their late brother. When you think of Furious 7, you probably think of Brian and Dom racing down an empty road, Walker smiling out the window, and Charlie Puth singing “See You Again.”
The ending itself is great and very touching. Outside of that, the second half of this movie is frustratingly average. Jason Statham’s Deckard Shaw largely disappears after making such a huge impact in the first hour or so, making you wonder where he is most of the time. This is also the point in the franchise where Dwayne Johnson stops playing Hobbs and just starts playing Dwayne Johnson. The hard-nosed, all-business Hobbs completely disappears in Furious 7, replaced by Johnson’s well-known brand of wisecracks and Instagram smirks.
I miss the old Hobbs.
5. The Fast and the Furious (2001)
As ridiculous as the Fast Saga has become over the years, it can be tough to remember how simple and effective the franchise’s first entry actually is. The characters, situations, and (most importantly) the stunts all feel real.
The Fast and Furious is small in scale but delivers some big thrills, focusing on a cop that goes undercover into the Lost Angeles street racing scene, hoping to weed out a group of criminals who have been robbing shipping trucks out on the highway. Both Brian and Dom are given layers upon layers, twisting themselves into each other’s lives and consistently evaluating their own morals. It’s a classic tale of enemies becoming allies. This first outing also contains Vin Diesel’s single best performance as Dom Toretto.
The clothing and cars date The Fast and the Furious, helping make it a product of its era, but the film itself continues to age well. This is still an incredibly fun watch 22 years later.
4. The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006)
This is undoubtedly my favorite Fast & Furious movie. There are a couple that are technically better, so they earned higher spots on this list, but Tokyo Drift is the one I’ll go back to every time.
Before becoming the architect of the entire franchise, Justin Lin entered Dom’s world with The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift. Rather than focusing on Brian or Dom, Tokyo Drift follows a new set of characters in Japan, putting an emphasis on drifting as opposed to traditional street racing. The result is a colorful, fast-paced, all-around fun romp through the streets of Tokyo.
Tokyo Drift gets all the credit for bringing the franchise’s best character into the fold, with Sung Kang’s Han playing the role of mentor to fish-out-of-water racer Sean Boswell.
What you may not know is that Tokyo Drift isn’t actually Han’s first movie, just his first in the Fast Saga. Sung Kang (and Tokyo Drift co-star Jason Tobin) starred in Justin Lin’s 2002 film Better Luck Tomorrow, where he first played the eternally cool Han. The Fast & Furious movies actually reference Better Luck Tomorrow, when Gisele tells Han that his compulsive snack-eating is a result of being a former smoker. Smoking was a staple of Han’s character back in that very first collaboration with Lin.
3. Fast Five (2011)
Whenever you talk to any Fast & Furious fan about the best movies in the franchise, Fast Five will always be a part of the conversation. While other entries are hotly debated amongst the franchise faithful, the love for Fast Five is as close to universal as you’re going to get.
This movie is at or near the top of just about everyone’s Fast & Furious ranking, and for good reason. Fast Five contains two of the coolest and most memorable set pieces in the franchise. The safe heist has become iconic for action movie fans, so much so that Fast X bases its entire storyline around that one sequence. For my money, the train heist earlier in the film is even better. That fast-approaching bridge as Dom and Brian are trying to escape delivers more suspense than most movies can muster in their entire runtimes.
Hey, remember when Luke Hobbs was awesome? Yeah, me too.
2. The Fate of the Furious (2017)
If Fast Five is the most universally loved film in the Fast & Furious series, The Fate of the Furious might be the franchise’s most controversial entry. The reactions to The Fate of the Furious are all over the map. Some believe it’s one of the best Fast films, while others won’t even revisit it during rewatches because they hate it so much.
As you can tell by the ranking here, I fall into the former category. The Fate of the Furious is the embodiment of the ridiculous, over-the-top action that so many say they love about these movies. Each set piece is completely insane, but they’re such a unique brand of insane that there isn’t a moment when they don’t feel fresh. That remote-controlled car parade in the second act is executed to near-perfection.
The Fate of the Furious also makes great use of Vin Diesel’s increasingly serious portrayal of Dom. By pitting Dom against his family, Diesel can be as stone-faced as he wants to be. It makes total sense for the story and it keeps Diesel from being a charisma vampire to the rest of the cast (all of which seem to be having a wonderful time).
Most importantly, The Fate of the Furious contains what I am confident is the single best scene in the entire saga. Jason Statham’s Deckard Shaw is tasked with rescuing Dom’s baby from Cipher’s plane and has to fight his way out while carrying an infant in a car seat. It’s so well-choreographed and Statham delivers on every single exchange with that baby. This could’ve gone on for an entire hour and never worn-out its welcome.
1. Fast & Furious 6 (2013)
The sixth entry in the Fast & Furious franchise is its strongest, taking the roadmap from Fast Five and improving on it in a few interesting, important ways.
Fast & Furious 6 is the movie that brings Letty back into the fold, revealing that she has no memory and is working with the villainous Shaw, played to smarmy perfection by Luke Evans. Letty’s return gives Dom, Brian, and the others some heavy emotional stakes, succeeding in making the outcome of the story actually feel important and setting up Shaw the first truly memorable villain in the series.
These movies are known for their massive action sequences, and Fast & Furious 6 has plenty of those. The 37-mile long runway is both wild and hilarious. The tank on the highway is exceptional and gives Roman his best scenes of the series. Dom wrecking his car into a guardrail and leaping over a bridge to catch a falling Letty, landing on another car with nary a scratch, is what this franchise is all about.
Those set pieces are awesome, but it’s the smaller, more intimate action that sets Fast & Furious 6 apart. No other Fast & Furious movie has the kind of hard-hitting, hand-to-hand action that this one does. There’s a sequence in the middle of this movie that features not one, but two expertly crafted fight scenes taking place simultaneously. Martial arts expert Joe Taslim goes head-to-head with both Sung Kang and Tyrese Gibson, while Michelle Rodriguez and Gina Carano beat the absolute snot out of each other through multiple levels of a subway station. Every punch in these sequence feels more brutal than the last.
Fast & Furious 6 has everything you want in a Fast & Furious movie, and then some. It’s the total package.