Since the 1980s, a lot of movies which associated with car racing continually were emerged from Hollywood, and I would say that this kind of Hollywood movies can be stood for one special effect show of electronics fantasy. The Fast and Furious series, as expected that providing the most impressive and enjoyable perspectives of visual and auditory to audience, especially in young generation. In regarding to the soundtrack from Fast and Furious, as the representative of youth genre of action, we can find out that Hip Hop played a dominating role during this series, in Fast and Furious 3: Tokyo Drift, when hip hop genre passed into movie, always presenting two “spectacle” to audience one is about speed another is body that influencing the thematic youth culture, attitude and global national identity.
In Tokyo Drift, as the story-line mainly centered on some crazy and illegal activities happened on some rebel teenagers, at this point, the hip hop which originated from street culture of black, could be well integrated into movie itself. From the speed spectacle aspect, I think that Hip Hop genre was relatively as free, strong, and fast rhythm to emphasized on “speed spectacle” of car racing on street culture. Here the music as the coordinating tool to fit in visual phenomenon. It contributed to the flowing of movie, like each time before car racing, the Hip Hop soundtrack plays an important role that impacting on the atmosphere, making it more thrilling, nervous and stimulated and then as one significant factor that pushing forward the rhythm of movie and strengthen the sense of speed. In addition, my opinion is that the Hip Hop music was arranged on these sequences could draw young generation attention even expecting the curious psychology. During this movie, the high speed movement audio-visual created a sense of space and actual sense of speed. Combing with the roar of motor, and frictional sound between tires, constructing as the dominating Hip Hop music style atmosphere which only belongs to Youth culture. Fast, not only presenting on the Hip Hop genre, but also reflecting the youth battle which the one first to reach the finish line for the purpose of driving speed skills and contestant attitude. During the contest, the car chasing, car body crash, and driving skills scene always presented to audience on physical and mental shock. The Hip Hop music advanced the speed spectacle not only satisfied audience visual factors, even during the race focus on racers’ facial expressions which more likely tending to characterization, their attitude.
As I know that sometimes Hip Hop was more about freestyle, personal emotion involved the song, without the attitude for Hip hop, that is an half-baled Hip Hop music. For instance, in this movie, Shaw was one USA bad boy that had to move to Tokyo for studying due to a lot of trouble he made in US, through the car racing, he found himself finally. The theme song named “Tokyo Drift” by Teriyaki Boyz which a hybrid language Hip Hop of English and Japanese repeatedly show during car racing scene. Though Adding the Hip Hop element inside it is like giving the new meaning of car racing, which is no longer a single competition about win or not, but the attitudes for life, brotherhood and love in this move. In a word, I would say that in terms of narrative and character setting, the Hip Hop genre stood for the protagonists attitude which as unconventional ways that gradually transferring. Such as, Shaw, the white young and rebel guy rather than acting some traditional heroes that playing a protective role of social security. Getting through his perspective of justice to against Yakuzha( Japanese gangsters), in deeper side it relatively put the surface phenomenon of speed spectacle to another social culture issue, given the social text to music itself. I would conclude that “to overcome violence with violence”, one teenage almost abandoned by society, taking his responsibility to save his friends in crisis, which instead he still needs the assistance from the Yakuzha side, most of his close friends were involved in that society. So Shaw the protagonist was shaped as that kind of having affection and faith which never disappointed to himself. This is youth culture, kind of reflecting to Hip Hop culture, potentially influencing the “Fast” and “Furious” these two terms.
Apart from the speed spectacle, I would say that the body spectacle was more likely as basing on audience have the right of choose and control, their individual needs and desires to satisfy psychological and behavioral needs. Normally Hip Hop music included some sensitive lyrics and rhythm like this “Tokyo Drift” song, when the soundtrack was played on the scene that first time Shaw went to the underground street car contest, girls’ sexy body, the way how the camera shoot focus on their body movement, as the music assisted that presentation of the female body to satisfy male audience that treating women as physical objects and psychological desires by accepting the initiative of Hip Hop. Women dressed in tight –fitting clothes and curved body fully expressed the femininity and tended to the necessary element of Youth culture.
Finally, since the story-line happened in Tokyo, the Hip Hop song “Tokyo Drift: also applied Japanese element inside and male , female voice together. Like the Shaw as the central that different ethnic on screen, in my opinion, it is not surprising that the movie in the meanwhile integrated Hip Hop feature that having a more cognitive attitude for different racial idea, and the white people- centered concept was gradually changing . it is a new Hollywood consuming style that influenced by Hip Hop so that attracted more young generation to this market. “It should be indicated that the de-centering process of globalization makes it untenable to single out the symbolic center that belongs to a particular country. “(Koichi, 2002)
In the end, I would say the Hip Hop music already deeply signified the most remarkable thing for Fast and Furious Serious, more importantly, In the Tokyo Drift, Hip Hop invariably stands for huge passion on youth culture, their attitude to life, and global national awareness. So this genre become one crucial symbol to lead the young Fast and Furious development.
Iwabuchi, K. oichi. Recentering Globalization : Popular Culture and Japanese Transnationalism. Durham: Duke University Press, 2002. Print.
Iwabuchi, K. oichi, Beng Huat Chua, and Project Muse. East Asian Pop Culture Analysing the Korean Wave. 2008. Web <http://muse.jhu.edu/books/9789888052226/>.