Tag Archives: brett ratner

Rush Hour (film, not traffic)

Rush Hour is a 1998 comedy/martial arts/buddy cop movie directed by Brett Ratner and starring Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker. One is a hot shot detective from Hong Kong, the other is a loudmouth cop from LA. I’ll let you guess which is which. They are forced to work together when a Chinese diplomat’s daughter gets kidnapped. Detective Inspector Lee (Jackie Chan) is asked by the Chinese to solve the case, and Detective Carter (Chris Tucker) is asked by the FBI to distract Lee and keep him from interfering with the investigation. Carter and Lee don’t trust each other, they don’t like each other, but they have to learn to work together in order to solve the case and save little Soo Yung Han.

Jackie Chan is one of the most entertaining martial artists to ever grace the big screen. He can fight like a motherfucker and does all his own stunts like a badass. And he does some truly spectacular stunts. His fighting style is also unique. Bruce Lee, Jet Li, Chuck Norris… they all just punch and kick the bad guys. Jackie Chan punches and kicks them too, but he’s always trying to escape and avoid fighting. He uses the objects around him for defense and uses them to hurt the bad guys. It’s like parkour as a martial art. He’s not afraid to stand and fight, but he’ll run away if he can. It makes the fights more entertaining, more personal, and more realistic in a lot of ways.

Chris Tucker is talks loud and fast. He is obnoxious and annoying… and somehow endearing. His character is brash, arrogant, and totally full of himself. But he does the right thing when he needs to. Chris Tucker is obviously a Michael Jackson fan and he sneaks a lot of M.J. references into the movie.

The movie is entertaining. There are a lot of plot holes but the producers don’t care and neither should you. Brett Ratner will never win an Oscar but he knows how to make an action flick. The movie is pretty decent, way better than the sequels. The credits are one of the highlights (like most Jackie Chan films) where they show all the bloopers. You see Jackie messing up on stunts and see Chris Tucker messing up his lines. The chemistry they have off-screen carries over into the movie. You should have seen this movie already. A long time ago.

Critically Rated at 12/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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X-Men: The Last Stand

The X-Men are back on the big screen for the third time and Brett Ratner does everything he can to ruin everything that Bryan Singer tried to accomplish with this trilogy. Most of the main characters from the first two movies reprise their roles, but there are way too many characters to give anyone a decent amount of screen time. The end result is a bunch of mutants running around fighting each other but you don’t give a fuck about who is fighting or why.

The movie starts twenty years before the events of the main story, a middle-aged Charles Xavier and Magneto meet with a Class 5 mutant named Jean Grey. They have a brief discussion about how powerful Jean in, and whether or not she will control her power or if it will control her. The movie jumps ahead another ten years to a young Warren Worthington III as he tries to hide his mutant wings from his disapproving father.

The movie jumps to the present day as Worthington Labs announces a cure for the mutant gene. This causes a huge rift in the mutant community. Some mutants want the cure and others view it as a form of extermination. Magneto uses it as a chance to recruit more mutants to join his side. He recruits Callisto, Psylocke, Arclight, and Kid Omega (who should be named Quill, but whatever, details aren’t important).

Meanwhile the X-Men have lost Jean Grey from the events of the second movie, and Cyclops still hasn’t gotten over losing her. Shadowcat (Ellen Page) and Colossus have bigger roles on the team, and Beast (Kelsey Grammer) also joins the X-Men. Cyclops is all emo and goes to Alkali Lake and Jean reappears and the two are reunited. The joyous reunion is short-lived because Jean Grey is no longer Jean Grey, now she is the Phoenix.

Magneto keeps on recruiting more mutants to his cause. When he frees Mystique from her mobile prison, he also frees the Juggernaut (Vinnie Jones) and the Multiple Man. They join the Brotherhood of Mutants without any persuasion, as soon as they are introduced they are recruited. How convenient. When Magneto and his posse go to recruit the Phoenix/Jean Grey, they bump into Xavier and a few X-Men who have the same idea. Magneto and Xavier both try to persuade her to join their side and Xavier ends up getting disintegrated.

The X-Men are without their leader and Magneto gets ready for an assault on Worthington Labs to destroy the cure. The remaining X-Men (Wolverine, Storm, Beast, Iceman, Colossus, and Shadowcat) form their last stand and try to defend the island. There is a mutant battle and mutants fight and mutants die. Jean momentarily regains control of herself and asks Wolverine to kill her and the Phoenix and he does even though he doesn’t want to.

There’s a scene after the credits where it’s hinted that Xavier has transferred his consciousness to a comatose guy. If genes are responsible for mutation, this new body shouldn’t have any powers, just throwing that out there.

There are a lot more mutants in this movie than in the previous two. They add mutants without establishing who they are. Callisto, Kid Omega, Psylocke, Arclight, Multiple Man, and the Juggernaut are all new mutants and they don’t waste anytime trying to establish their characters. They literally come onscreen, say their name and mention their powers and pledge their allegiance to Magneto. Super lazy writing.

The  X-Men are also treated like an afterthought. Cyclops is barely in the movie. Rogue’s character is completely wasted. She never even obtained the ability to fly like she did in the comics… she voluntarily gets the cure and stops being a mutant. Xavier dies simply for shock value. Colossus is on the team for the whole movie, but he has fewer lines than he did in five minutes that he was in the second movie. And where the fuck is Nightcrawler? Adding Beast was a nice touch, but you couldn’t have another blue mutant on the team?

The worst addition to the franchise was Warren Worthington III a.k.a. Angel (Ben Foster). They introduce his character in the beginning, he has a dramatic escape from being forcibly given the cure by his dad, he comes to the mansion for sanctuary, and he saves his dad from falling. That’s his arc. He doesn’t join the X-Men. He doesn’t fight. He just wastes screen time and keeps other characters from getting developed.

The first two movies balanced action who deeper themes of acceptance, of tolerance, of being proud of who you are… this movie is just noise and fireworks. Ratner takes all the characters that Singer established and ruins them. He takes all the care and thought and attention to detail and casts it aside. He doesn’t care that the first two movies were foreshadowing something great, he wants explosions and meaningless special effects. And he delivers. This movie looks awesome. It’s just not coherent and the story sucks and any decent performances by the actors are lost in the chaos. This is a terrible way to end a great trilogy.

Critically Rated at 8/17

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