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Rush Hour 2 (Infinifilm Edition) (2001)

A movie directed by Brett Ratner

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Best Film of the Summer!!! Chop to It...

  • Aug 1, 2001
  • by
Pros: Great action, funny, good chemistry between cast.

Cons: Loses a tiny bit of steam towards the end.

The Bottom Line: Best film of the Summer so far. A sequel that beats the original.

Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie's plot.

In the early part of 1994, New Line Cinemas took a chance on a popular Hong Kong martial artists who had yet to find a wide spread audience in America. New Line figured an $8 million investment to distribute the stars new film and some of his other works in the US might not be to bad a deal, as they should recoup their investment in the video market, and if he gets a small following here, all the better.
The investment paid off, when “Rumble in The Bronx” showed American audiences the magic and charm of Jackie Chan, and soon filmgoers the world over discovered the man who had been the top box office draw in Asia for years.
Chan combines frantic action with inspired and timely comedy while doing all of his own stunts. This would seem to be a natural fit for Hollywood, but Chan’s earlier efforts to break into American cinema, “The Big Brawl” “Cannonball Run” were largely ignored by the viewing public and critics alike. Chan was badly disappointed by his failure in America but returned to Hong Kong and a string of hits followed.
With the success of “Rumble in the Bronx” and “Supercop” in America, New Line decided to put Jackie in an American made production and the resulting film, “Rush Hour” was a huge success as the filmed earned over $250 in box office revenue worldwide.
It is a standard practice in Hollywood that when a film opens big, talk of a sequel soon follows in the studio offices. A second Rush Hour was soon approved, but it took 3 years for the creative teams schedules to clear so they could all retime. Thankfully for film fans they did as ”Rush Hour 2” was worth the wait.
The sequel picks up just days after the first film. Detectives Lee and Carter (Jackie Chan, Chris Tucker) are on vacation in Hong Kong following their completion of the case in the first film. Tucker as usual moves his mouth a mile a minute and is constantly complaining about Lee working when he is supposed to be on a vacation showing Tucker a good time. Things soon take a turn for the worse as a bombing at the U.S. customs interrupts the vacation office and the deaths of two customs agents.
Despite Carter’s complaints and the insistence of the U.S. Secret Service, Chan and Tucker on soon on the case, battling a deadly Triad Smuggling organization.
The action starts to fly almost as fast as the jokes from this point on as “Rush Hour 2” blends action and comedy in a brilliant way that never seems forced. A scene where Carter entertains at a Karaoke bar is bound to have even the stodgiest person laughing.
The film is set between, Hong Kong, Los Angles, and Las Vegas yet never loses its pacing or focus in the change of locations as some films often do. The Chinese Government supported the production with open arms and this was the first Western production to receive support from the new Chinese government in Hong Kong following their taking control of the island from Great Britain a few years back.
The film was written and directed by Brett Ratner who wrote and directed the original as well. Ratner knows his material and does not try to force the action or comedy, he allows the easy charm of Tucker and Chan and their natural chemistry to flow and the results are pure magic. The action scenes are funny and inspired without being graphically violent, as is the standard for a Jackie Chan film. Any item in a scene can become a prop at a moment’s notice and items as well as feet and fists fly with amazing speed. Chan is still doing his own stunts, though Hollywood insurance companies will not let him do certain stunts so compromises have to be made at times when Chan does an American made production. Nevertheless, the trademark Chan outtakes and bloopers are present at the films end.
The film also benefits from a strong supporting cast such as John Lone who plays the leader of the Triad gang Ricky Tan. The actor best known for the title role in “the last Emperor” brings a quiet and educated malevolence to his character and his characters backstory helps to flesh out the character of Detective Lee and his motivations. The casts also includes rising starlet Zhang Ziyi who gained national attention as the spoiled aristocrat in “Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon” plays the muscle of the crime syndicate Hu Li, and she is as deadly as she is beautiful and her action scenes are dynamic. Isabella (Roselyn Sanchez) rounds out the cast as a customs agent who may be more then she seems. The supporting cast works very well with Tucker and Chan and this enables “Rush Hour 2” to be the rarest of finds in Hollywood, a sequel that is better than the original. The characters are dynamic and interesting, the story is entertaining and not to unrealistic and the action and jokes are funny and frantic yet very original. The chemistry between the two stars is evident and word has it that “Rush Hour 3” is already in the planning stages. Lets hope the production of the new film is not rushed as not only is “Rush Hour 2” the best film of the summer so far. The film is proof that when attention is paid to character and story development rather then on FX only, a solid, well rounded film can be made.

4 stars out of 5
Gareth Von Kallenbach


Suitability For Children: Suitable for Children Age 13 and Older

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More Rush Hour 2 reviews
review by . July 07, 2006
posted in Movie Hype
If you can stomach Chris Tucker's annoying voice and abrasive manner than you can enjoy this movie. Jackie Chan is excellent in it even though in one scene he has disappearing duct tape on his taped hands. The villianous is the same actress from Memoirs of a Geisha and Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon. She and Jackie never square off in the movie which is a big disappointment.    Don Cheadle is excellent in a minor supporting role and look for Alan King in one of his last roles …
review by . March 24, 2002
The movie was not as good as the original, but it was better than a typical sequel. There were plenty of laughs and amazing martial arts movements. I don't think I'd buy the movie, but it's definitely worth renting. The storyline wasn't too tight, but lots of one-liners. Like the first one, it ends with bloopers and those are a kick (pun intended)!
About the reviewer
Gareth Von Kallenbach ()
Ranked #112
I am a syndicated movie & game critic, writer, author and frequent radio guest. My work has appeared in over 60 publications worldwide and he is the creator of the rising entertainment site "Skewed … more
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About this movie


Rush Hour 2retains the appeal of its popular predecessor, so it's easily recommended to fans of its returning stars, Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan. The action--and there's plenty of it--starts in Hong Kong, where Detective Lee (Chan) and his L.A. counterpart Detective Carter (Tucker) are attempting a vacation, only to get assigned to sleuth a counterfeiting scheme involving a triad kingpin (John Lone), his lethal henchwoman (Zhang Ziyi, fromCrouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), and an American billionaire (Alan King). Director Brett Ratner simply lets his stars strut their stuff, so it hardly matters that the plot is disposable, or that his direction is so bland he could've phoned it in from a Jacuzzi.

At its best, Rush Hour 2 compares favorably to Chan's glossiest Hong Kong hits, and when the action moves to Las Vegas (where Don Cheadle makes an unbilled cameo), the movie goes into high-pitched hyperdrive, riding an easy wave of ambitious stuntwork and broad, derivative humor. Echoes of Beverly Hills Cop are too loud, however, and stale ideas (including a comedic highlight for Jeremy Piven as a gay clothier) are made even more aggravating by dialogue that's almost Neanderthal in its embrace of retro-racial stereotypes. Of course, that's what makes Rush Hour 2 a palatable dish of mainstream comedy; it insults and comforts the viewer at the same time, and while some may find Tucker's relentless hamming unbearable, those who...

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Director: Brett Ratner
Genre: Action, Adventure
Release Date: August 3, 2001
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Screen Writer: Ross LaManna, Jeff Nathanson
DVD Release Date: June 1, 2004
Runtime: 1hr 30min
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