Rush Hour 2: Electric Boogaloo
***.5 BM
Starring: Jackie Chan, Chris Tucker, John Lone, Alan King, Zhang Ziyi, Roselyn Sanchez


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"Rush Hour" was a fun film, and its sequel doesn't try to be anything different, which I'm noticing more and more is the standard for franchises. All I really expected was some kicking, and I got it.

It's the same schtick, really: Jackie Chan is a Hong Kong cop, Chris Tucker is an L.A. cop, and when they team up, comedy culture clashes happen and wacky hijinks ensue. Only this time, they know each other a bit better. This makes things strange, because "Rush Hour" was so forgettable that I was only dimly aware of the "character development" (snicker) that occurred in the first one, or even that they had names other than Jackie and Chris (and my point is made by the outtakes at the end). This also served to make the jokes referencing the "famous" parts of the first film only marginally effective.

Tucker has the potential to be extremely annoying, so it's to his credit that he doesn't ever get really grating, staying adroitly in the realm of goofy comedy. Chan is always lots of fun, and it always fills me with giddiness and glee when he starts opening cabinet doors and smacking people in the heads with them. Zhang Ziyi will hopefully become a huge star once she learns English, because she kicks all sorts of ass and is unfailingly pleasant to look at. John Lone, playing the crooked partner of Chan's dead father, looks to be about the same age or younger than Chan, although that could be attributable to the fact Chan has taken about seventy lifetimes' worth of beatings to prematurely age his face. Alan King's part is hardly notable. Roselyn Sanchez is pretty foxy, too, and a sign that this could turn into another "Lethal Weapon" style franchise, where more people are added to the 'usual gang of idiots' with each sequel.

Do we need another set of "Lethal Weapon" films? I doubt it. But as long as they're dopey and fun like this, I guess I'll keep going to see them.

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