Monday, May 14, 2012

Monday Sequel Spotlight: Rush Hour 2

Welcome to a new weekly feature here at Movies With Abe. In this series, I’ll be taking a look at some famous (and infamous) sequels to see how they compare to the original. I'll do my best to alternate between the greats and the best forgotten. Leave your thoughts or a suggestion for a spotlight in the comments!

Rush Hour 2
Directed by Brett Ratner
Released August 3, 2001

I just had to feature this film since I mentioned it in my post about “X-Men: The Last Stand,” which was also directed by Brett Ratner, last week. This is one sequel that represents a fine-tuning of the themes and jokes presented in the first film, proving that some films do deserve a sequel since they can make an equally good, if not better, film. This is almost inarguably Chris Tucker’s best performance (I say that since he’s appeared in fewer than a dozen films and I’ve seen only a few of them), and his mispronunciation of gefilte fish in the bloopers reel at the end of the film still makes me laugh. Jackie Chan was also at his best trying hard to speak English and showing that he’s enormously capable of excellent martial arts. The Triad gang plotline worked well, but this is really about the comedy and the action, two things that blend incredibly well in this terrific film. Unfortunately, this wasn’t the final film in the series produced. The third installment, released in 2007, didn’t have the same spark, and it seems like a five-year recess resulted in the lost of the chemistry between its leads and its effectiveness as both a comedy and an action film. That doesn’t diminish the strength of the second film, definitely one of the funniest comedies of 2001.

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