RUSH HOUR 2 (2001)

Directed By: Brett Ratner
Written By: Ross LaManna & Jeff Nathanson
Cinematography: Matthew F. Leonetti
Editor: Mark Helfrich & Robert L. Lambert

Cast: Chris Tucker, Jackie Chan, John Lone, Zhang Ziyi, Roselyn Sanchez, Alan King, Harris Yulin, Kenneth Tsang, Maggie Q, Ernie Reyes Jr, Jeremy Piven, Saul Rubinek

It’s vacation time for Det. James Carter and he finds himself alongside Det. Lee in Hong Kong wishing for more excitement. While Carter wants to party and meet the ladies, Lee is out to track down a Triad gang lord who may be responsible for killing two men at the American Embassy. Things get complicated as the pair stumble onto a counterfeiting plot by L.A. crime boss Steven Reign and Triad Ricky Tan, an ex-cop who played a mysterious part in the death of Det. Lee’s father. Throw in a power struggle between Tan and the gorgeous but dangerous Hu Li and the boys are soon up to their necks in fist fights and life-threatening situations. A trip back to the U.S. may provide the answers about the bombing, the counterfeiting, and the true allegiance of sexy customs agent Isabella. Then again, it may turn up more excitement than Carter was looking for during his vacation.

This film shockingly I enjoyed more than the original. Maybe as it is bigger and better. Because if you are going to watch a mindless  buddy action/Comedy. You want it to at least be I press over as far as scale and chemistry.

Here it is more of the same only Internationally and with a bigger budget. Where the characters are only cops but act more like spies. Even as it ends up back in the United States. At least the film attempts to be epic, At least it’s entertaining

As this seems to start off with Chris Tucker being more the fish out of the water but more accepting and open in his travels before it ends up having a criminal case at Its heart. What keeps the film going is It’s More cartoon-like nature and the strength and growth. Nature of its Stunts. Which is usually punctuated with a joke or a bit of comedy. 

The film feels just like the music videos of its Director Brett Ratner. More glitz, glamour, and glossy with occasions set up for humor. While the stars and action set pieces to come first. The story and any female characters come along. 

The film was supposed to be actress Zyang Zihi’s big first American breakout role after starring in and being discovered in the film CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON. She plays an impressive right-hand woman, really an executioner to the main villain and she is memorable or at least as memorable as the film is. She and Roselyn Sanchez are the better and most memorable parts of the movie (other than the massage parlor fight) both deserve better or at least more to do. (They both also deserve to work more than they seem to currently)

Roselyn Sanchez is beautiful in this movie and actually is given a chance to be funny and a little street, but her role never feels vital or really needed. As she comes off as more of the same and maybe a live interest for one of the main characters. As it seems the film is more revealing of her in tight outfits and underwear then of character development. 

You also must wonder about the film’s mindset when the only female characters are either innocent, love objects, potential love interests, or villains. 

Ziyi’s Character at least has a purpose. Sanchez is a convenience and a distraction. A character to make the simple plot seem more complicated. 

You know what you are In For watching this movie. Only this one feels smoother and more streamlined than the first film.

As Chris Tucker is funny in his faux toughness and falsetto voice at times. Making him seem like a tough wimp but noticeably more muscular then the first film and Jackie Chan does what he does only in a more racy film than his usual American films which seem more aimed at kids. Here he is still impressive as far as the fighting scenes and stunt work and is occasionally funny but always stoic.

In the end, it feels similar to BEVERLY HILLS COP 2. Where it is bigger, Better, and flashier and has the characters more under the control of the director. As Brett Ratner has always been behind the movies as well as the stars. The films all stay the same only with different locations and budgets. So that once you watch one you have pretty much seen the rest. 

Grade: C+

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