Love to hate it or hate to love it, 2001’s The Fast and the Furious has cemented itself into car culture folklore. But perhaps we like it because of, rather than in spite of the various inaccuracies.
With two technical advisors on board for the first film in the form of Craig Lieberman and RJ Devera, though, you might wonder how the more eyebrow-raising elements got in there to begin with. As Lieberman explains in the latest in a long line of videos insightful videos about his F&F work, “I gave advice, they didn’t always take it!”
For the most part, the issues in the first film seem to stem from the production team either ignoring Lieberman’s advice or adapting it in ways that didn’t make sense. Take the infamous ‘danger to manifold’ scene as an example - his original suggestion was for a nitrous pressure issue to cost Brian the race against Dom. This would have been suitably dramatic while leaving the car driveable for when the former picks up the latter in the next scene.
The writers went another way, and we see the Eclipse (which had 140bhp, by the way) being driven around despite apparently having fried piston rings. The floor falling out, meanwhile, was based on someone seeing some of those awful checker plate floor mats and assuming they were looking at an actual panel.
Some elements could have been even more silly. Car geeks will no doubt remember seeing the bonnet of the Toyota Supra being lifted to reveal a non-turbo 2JZ, but the original script called for Jesse saying, “oh my god, a Skyline motor!”
Lieberman is quick to defend the goofs, however. “Newsflash: this movie was not meant to appeal to gearheads - it was made to attract audiences who liked action movies,” he said, noting that director Rob Cohen merely wanted a “reasonable amount of technical accuracy”.
What’s your favourite technical error from the Fast and Furious franchise?