Tremendous Team-ups – The Rush Hour Trilogy

Hello and welcome to the beginning of our Tremendous Team-ups site event. This week we’ll be taking a look at some of our favorite team-ups across entertainment. Before we officially start, a friendly reminder to check back in each day this week for our remaining entries, with our weekend poll opening on Friday (01/27/2023) and closing Sunday at midnight. Now with that out of the way, let’s kick things off with our first entry.

What’s my favorite team-up?

It’s Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker in the Rush Hour trilogy. I’m not going to dance around it. Unabashedly and very much with bias this is my answer and hopefully I’ll be able to convey to you all why that’s so. For those who haven’t heard of the Rush Hour trilogy of films let me give you a quick overview of what they’re all about:

The films from 1998-2007 follow the duo of Inspector Lee from Hong Kong and Detective Carter from the LAPD, an unlikely pair played by the legendary Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker respectively. They work together to solve cases that can only be tackled via ‘boots on the ground’ investigations and their efforts take them across the world to places like Hong Kong, Paris, Las Vegas, New York city and of course LA. There’s wise cracks, Hong Kong martial arts, Jackie’s signature physical comedy, Chris Tucker’s comedic flair and excellent chemistry between the two actors. This falls under the film genre of ‘buddy cop’ with the likes of the Lethal Weapon‘s, Bad Boys‘, and 21 Jump Streets of the world.

Now, up until last week I hadn’t seen any of the films in at least fifteen years so I decided to re-watch the trilogy of films in preparation for this event to see how everything held up. Well, in short, not too bad. I’m not going to pretend that these films are perfect and timeless. They’ve grown into mixed bags with dated jokes and writing that varies in quality. Let’s make this clear: these movies are just action comedies and by no mean are meant to have substantial plots. The plot is a vehicle for the comedy and action. In other words, it’s just dumb fun and sometimes that’s all you need.

from Rush Hour (1998)

Take this scene from the first film: It’s our intro to Chris Tucker’s Detective James Carter as we see how he approaches his job as an LAPD Detective. Not only that, we have the tone set for the film and trilogy as a whole.

from Rush Hour 2 (2001)

This scene from the second film is a lot of fun. What starts as a normal afternoon at a Hong Kong spa turns quickly into our duo being way over their heads and ends with them having to streak through the city all the way back to the precinct. This scene embodies the charm of the series quite well. It also shows the choreographed action helmed by the main man Jackie himself.

from Rush Hour (1998)

And this scene from the first film plays into one of the troupes of the ‘buddy cop’ genre. It’s the moment where common ground is found and the bonding starts as our unlikely duo begin to settle further into the notion of working together. I appreciate montages and enjoy this one for what it is.

Now it’s only fair you know that the ‘buddy cop’ genre has a special place in my heart. Most of the films that became staples for the genre were films my Dad would enjoy watching and over time I would watch some of them with him. My favorites of which, no surprise here, were the Rush Hour films. My dad and I would quote the films whenever I joined him for errands. I wouldn’t say the series is that quotable if I’m being honest, it was mostly us referring back to some of our favorite moments. Those were good times, I’m glad I still have those memories. Anyhow all this to be said, I have a major bias. So yea. This is my favorite team-up and I hope some of you go out and at least watch the first film. It’s a fun time and you’ll likely laugh too. How bout that? Invite some friends and/or family over and have a movie night, there’s a good idea for ya.

Until next time, be well and be safe, I’ll chat at ya real soon!

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