A History Of Violence: How the hell did The Fast And The Furious launch one of cinema’s biggest franchises?

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With A History Of Violence, Tom Breihan picks the most important action movie of every year, starting with the genre’s birth and moving right up to whatever Vin Diesel’s doing this very minute.

The Fast And The Furious (2001)

Wheels within wheels within wheels: The surprise hit of summer 2001 was The Fast And The Furious, a goofy low-stakes B-movie with a not-huge budget and no stars. The movie told the story of a team of mysterious truck hijackers coming from L.A.’s street-racing community and about the undercover cop tasked with taking them down. It was inspired by a Vibe article about the New York street-racing scene, and its title came from a 1955 Roger Corman B-movie. (Universal licensed the title from Corman, paying him in discarded stock footage.) But the real source material for The Fast And The Furious was obvious to anyone who’d …