The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (Wild Speed X3 Tokyo Drift in Japan) is a 2006 film directed by Justin Lin and the third installment of The Fast and the Furious film series. The film features an all-new cast and a different setting (Tokyo, Japan) from the previous two films. The movie was shot in Tokyo and parts of Los Angeles, the latter often covered with props and lights to create the illusion of the Tokyo style. While Paul Walker is not in the film, Vin Diesel reprises his role as Dominic Toretto in a cameo appearance.
Sean Boswell (Lucas Black), a 17-year-old teenager with a talent for auto mechanics, has led a life of getting into trouble. His mother had to relocate to different cities with him every time his problems at school or with the local authorities escalated enough. One day, he gets into a street race against the school quarterback. Both men crash their cars during the race and are sent to the police station. The incident almost lands Sean in jail, and his mother, deciding not to deal with moving again, sends him to Tokyo to live with his father, stationed in Japan as a U.S. Naval officer. Upon arriving at his father’s home in Tokyo, he is warned by his father not to stir up any trouble, or he will return to the U.S. to serve jail time.
At his private school, Sean meets Twinkie (Bow Wow), a fellow American, who hustles pre-owned goods to their Japanese classmates. That night, Twinkie and his gang bring Sean to a carpark and introduce him to the world of drift racing. Sean soon runs into Takashi (Brian Tee) – also known as DK (short for Drift King) – and his close friend Han Lue (Sung Kang), who was born and raised in America. Sean is seen by Takashi talking to Neela (Nathalie Kelley), Takashi’s New Zealander girlfriend, and when Takashi tells him to back down, Sean challenges him to a race using Han’s car. Due to Sean’s lack of drifting skills, Takashi easily defeats him. The next day, Han meets Sean after school and tells Sean that he must work for him to repay the damage done to his car. Sean soon learns that Han is involved in a business partnership with Takashi.
Han becomes Sean’s friend, and takes him under his wing when he leaves his father’s home, teaching him how to drift, and providing him with some financial support. Han does this because Sean is the only one unafraid of Takashi (calling him Takashi’s “kryptonite”). Sean slowly builds a reputation in the drift scene, and befriends Neela, who is also Sean’s classmate. Neela reveals that she, like Sean, was also considered an “outsider” once, not being native to Japan. She explains that she and Takashi grew up together after her mother died. However, after seeing Sean with Neela and learning of their time spent together, Takashi beats Sean up and warns him to stay away from Neela. Angry after seeing Sean’s bruises, Neela leaves Takashi to be with Sean.
Takashi’s uncle Kamata, a high ranking Yakuza (portrayed by Sonny Chiba), tells him that there is a discrepancy in the books, and that Han must be cheating them out of money. Takashi confronts Han and his group with this discrepancy, and Han, Sean, and Neela flee before Takashi deals with the money laundering. A car chase ensues through the Tokyo streets with Takashi and his right-hand-man Morimoto pursuing Han, Sean and Neela. During the chase, Han’s car is broadsided by a car at an intersection and lands upside-down. As Sean and Neela approach Han’s car, a nitrous-oxide leak erupts into a fire, causing the car to explode, killing Han.
Sean and Neela return to his father’s house when Takashi arrives to take Neela and kill Sean. Before he can do so, Sean’s father intervenes. Neela voluntarily goes away with Takashi.
As Sean has already caused trouble in Tokyo, his father tells him to pack his bags and leave the country, but Sean begs him to stay so he can clean his mess. Sean meets up with Twinkie, who hands him the money Han laundered from Kamata. Sean attempts to make amends by appealing to Kamata, returning the money and offering to challenge Takashi to an “honor race”, a duel where whoever loses leaves town. The race is on a tōge (mountain pass) that Takashi has the advantage on, since he’s supposedly the only one to ever make it down to the bottom in one piece. Since all the other cars were taken by the police, Sean and his team use the engine, an RB26DETT, from the S15 Silvia Sean had ruined. Sean, Twinkie, and Han’s crew borrow his father’s car, a 1967 Ford Mustang Fastback, and work on it. After some upgrades and test runs, Sean takes the Mustang to challenge Takashi.
After a long race battle in the mountains, Sean wins while Takashi survives a last-minute crash. Takashi’s loss causes him great humiliation since he still considers Sean to be an “outsider”. Kamata tells Sean he is free to go, and Takashi presumably leaves Tokyo. Neela gets back with Sean.
Not too long after the race, Sean becomes the new Drift King and is hanging out in the carpark with his crew and Neela. Twinkie comes up to Sean, saying someone who has been defeating racers all over Asia wants to challenge him, to which Sean accepts only after finding out the challenger knew Han. Sean pulls up his Nissan S15 next to a silver Plymouth Road Runner and sees the mystery driver as none other than Dominic Toretto (portrayed by Vin Diesel from the first film). Toretto tells Sean that Han was a close friend of his back in the U.S. and he won the Roadrunner from him. Neela counts off the race and the cars take off around the first corner.