|Directed by||Brett Ratner|
|Produced by||Roger Birnbaum|
Arthur M. Sarkissian
|Music by||Lalo Schifrin|
|Cinematography||Matthew F. Leonetti|
|Editing by||Mark Helfrich|
Robert K. Lambert
|Genre||Action, Comedy, Crime, Thriller|
|Distributed by||New Line Cinema|
|Release||August 3, 2001|
|Running time||90 minutes|
|Followed by||Rush Hour 3|
Rush Hour 2 is a 2001 buddy cop film, starring Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker. It is the sequel to the movie Rush Hour (1998). Rush Hour 2 grossed US$347,325,802 at the world-wide box-office, becoming the 4th top grossing film of 2001 and by far, the most successful movie in the series.
Four days after the events of Rush Hour, LAPD Detective James Carter (Chris Tucker) is in Hong Kong, with his good friend Hong Kong Police Force Chief Inspector Lee (Jackie Chan) as he was sent to vacation with Lee after saving the Chinese Consul's daughter in Los Angeles. Carter is interested in having a good time; however, soon after he arrives, a bomb delivered by a mysterious woman explodes in the United States Consulate General embassy, murdering two U.S. Custom agents in the process. Inspector Lee is contacted to the case, which becomes personal when it is discovered that it somehow involves Ricky Tan (John Lone), his late police officer father's former partner. Tan, who was suspected but never proven of having a role in Lee's father's death, is now a leader of the Triads, the most deadly gang in all of China. Over a phone call while driving Carter around during their vacation, Lee secretly accepts the case while hiding it to Carter over their first lead to go undercover at a bar.
While at the bar, Lee tells Carter to blend in but due to a poor performance of a classic song by a local on stage as Carter laments, Carter decides to show off his rendition. Catching him on stage, Lee explains to Carter that they were supposed to be investigating, with Carter disappointed that Lee lied to him about staying in vacation. Their cover is blown and attracts the attention of Xiao Hu Li (Zhang Ziyi), leader of the triad group operating the bar. Lee notices her and gives chase, with Carter following along. The triad group decide to ascend a building's scaffolding and Lee follows suit, fighting the group along the way up. Carter ascends the staircase to the roof before Lee and later Carter are attacked by Hu Li who leaves them dangling over the scaffolding. Despite Lee's assurance, the ties holding the scaffolding break and they fall, crashing onto a dumpster.
The next day, Carter angrily demands an explanation from Lee who revealed about the embassy bombing and the two Americans killed. Nonetheless, Lee decides to make up to Carter, bringing him to a massage parlour where Carter is enamoured with the prospect of being massaged by beautiful Chinese ladies. Coincidentally, Tan appears in the same parlour as they are which Lee decides to call for aid while Carter attempts to take matters into his own hands. Confronting Tan, Lee is soon forced to step in when Carter makes a scene destroying Tan's laptop. Spotting Lee, Tan goes to greet but Lee requests to talk in private, yet Tan is insistent to remain as his men are all around. He leaves, and a brawl breaks out. Lee and Carter initially emerge victorious in defeating all of Tan's men until reinforcements arrive, dumping them both over the highway completely naked. They embarrassingly make their way through the streets to Yau Ma Tei Police Station where Lee is stationed with his superior, Captain Chin. Carter berates Lee who brushes off the matter, before realising he had left his passport back at the massage parlour and sets out to return there, bumping the same mysterious woman who enters the police station to deliver a package which later also turns out to be a bomb.
The United States Secret Service, led by Agent Sterling (Harris Yulin), and the Hong Kong Police Force get into a squabble over the jurisdiction of the case. Sterling believes Ricky Tan is a minor player in a larger conspiracy and wants him left alone so he will lead them to the people in charge. Lee believing Tan is actually the head of the operation, is introduced by Chin to Sterling, and attempts to take up the case, but Sterling wants no involvement from local law enforcement. He reveals to Lee that the two Americans killed were US Custom Agents and not mere citizens as Lee was informed before leaving him and Chin. The package delivered by the woman detonates within the police station, and alerts Lee in remembering Carter may have been present in the building blast and anxiously tries to look for him. In contrast, Carter explores Hong Kong's streets, acquiring a new suit and humourously interacts with a butcher while asking for directions but winds up buying a live chicken from her instead. He eventually reaches the parlour but notices Tan leaving, tailing Tan in a taxi.
Devastated over his assumed partner's demise, Lee regrets not taking Carter on vacation, but soon learns from Chin that Tan will be attending a dinner party on his private yacht. Chin tells Lee he has no interest in informing Sterling and wants only the Hong Kong Police Force to handle the matter. Lee infiltrates the docked yacht in secret while Carter makes his way onboard and blends in with the guests. Carter strikes a conversation with a woman named Isabella Molina (Roselyn Sánchez), and meets her partner Steven Reign also onboard. Lee corners a thug over Tan bombing the police station and killing Carter, before Carter meets him, revealing to Lee he was not dead. Their presence however has caught Tan's attention and sends his men to escort the two to meet him. Tan scolds his underling, revealed to be Hu Li, before ordered to leave as Lee and Carter arrive.
Talking to Lee privately, Tan claims that someone within the triads is trying to frame him and needs Lee's help. Hu Li suddenly appears and shoots Tan, resulting in him falling off the boat. In the ensuing scuffle, Hu Li escapes alongside kicking Carter who tried to catch her and rendered him unconscious. Lee awakens Carter, with the latter noticing Reign remaining suspiciously calm despite the chaos. An angry Sterling holds Lee responsible for Tan's death and end of all possible leads, ordering him off the case with Carter to be returned to Los Angeles for involving himself. Lee decides to personally escort him to the airport, but confesses to Carter about the truth involving his father and Tan; Tan was partnered to Lee's father while serving in the police force when Lee's father found out Tan's involvement in the triads and had a lead, but he was killed alongside Tan subsequently resigning from the force. Given the case never solved with all evidence gone, it was what that made Lee desperate to get involved. Carter reminds Lee that his father likewise died unfairly and would do anything to square his passing, and they become motivated by their common desire to bring justice and meaning for their respective father's deaths in the line of duty. As such, Lee accompanies Carter back to the States.
On the plane, Carter tells Lee his theory of investigation; every case has a rich white man behind it, and that in their current case the man is Reign, whom Carter states is a Los Angeles hotel billionaire. Carter reveals what he saw on Tan's boat about Reign and his calm demeanour during the shooting, deciding Reign will be their focus. They set up camp outside the Reign Towers, spying on Molina who Carter met and tried to seduce on Tan's yacht. Lee takes over the observation and notices Molina undress after Reign's departure, before Carter confronts him over his strange fidgeting towards his previous supposed claim on a boring watch. They are interrupted when the strange woman whom Carter recognises as the lady that delivered the bomb back in the police station hand Molina a package. Realising Molina might be in danger, they rush to her room in an attempt to handle the package themselves, but Molina proves that it was a whole misunderstanding with the package containing dollar bills. Meeting back in her suite, Molina tells the two men that she is undercover, looking into Reign's money laundering of US $100 million dollars in super-bills (high grade counterfeit dollar bills). She believes there are some already in circulation and tasks them both on the case.
Lee and Carter pay a visit to Carter's old friend Kenny (Don Cheadle), an ex-con who runs an illegal gambling den frequented by triad members in the back room of his Chinese restaurant. Meeting Kenny, he tells them that a customer who was usually broke recently came in to his establishment with a suspicious amount of hundred-dollar bills. Kenny found it odd since the customer doesn't exactly earn much and suspected the bills to be fake but held true according to Kenny's tallies. Carter decides to check them out himself and confirms that they are Reign's counterfeits after showing Kenny that the counterfeits don't burn black like real bills do. Kenny subsequently tells them the customer's name is Zing, and informs them of his work place fittingly being at Reign Plaza. Lee and Carter meet Zing and chase him after confronting him, but wind up caught by the triads who are waiting for them. Before Hu Li can rid off them, Molina knocks Lee unconscious, then Hu Li kicks Carter like before and orders them to be taken on a container truck. The triads leave to move east.
Lee and Carter wake up tied to harnesses in the truck transporting Chinese warrior statues. Managing to free themselves, they knock over one of the statues by accident and reveal that the counterfeit money was transported via them. Carter takes some of the bills as evidence before he and Lee notice the truck was slowing down, revealing they were reaching their intended destination. They succeed in escaping via a sewer access after Lee takes out the truck's triad crew before the others arriving would notice that they were gone. Emerging from the sewers to reveal they are in Las Vegas, Lee spots the Red Dragon casino which shares the same name as Tan's yacht. They realise that Reign would be laundering the $100 million through there, and set out to investigate.
At the Red Dragon, Lee and Carter attend its grand opening night before being forcibly split up. Molina pulls Lee away to a social dance area where she convinces Lee she didn't sell them out, while filling him on the casino's extreme security and operations. She informs the engraving plates which were used to make the counterfeit money are being transported secretly via a container in the background and they need to reach it, where she then leaves. Lee reveals to Carter on Molina and that they need to do something to successfully infiltrate the casino's back-end. Carter makes a big commotion to distract the security staff while Lee attempts to infiltrate the back-end via stowing atop one of the containers being brought in. He is initially successful before a security camera notices and Hu Li captures him, placing a small Ying-Tao grenade in his mouth, and gags him. Hu Li threatens Lee to be obedient or she will detonate the grenade blowing his head before taking him up to the penthouse, where it is revealed that Tan faked his death and as Lee suspected, is in charge of the operation. After a few taunting words, Tan notices Reign heading for the penthouse, alluding how Reign as a partner, like Lee's father was untrustworthy and leaves to settle Reign, leaving Hu Li to do whatever she wants.
Molina then takes out a gun, reveals herself as a Secret Service agent and attempts to arrest Hu Li. In the chaos that follows, Lee manages to dispatch Hu Li's men before Hu Li kicks him out of a window where he falls down onto the casino floor. Molina and Hu Li then fight, and Molina sweeps the trigger for Lee's gagged grenade out onto the casino floor as well. Lee manically runs to try and find it but runs into Carter who had made such a big scene that drew all of casino security on him. They are briefly apprehended before gunshots pierce the casino air caused by Hu Li and Molina fighting over the gun resulting in the casino patrons madly trying to escape. Hu Li finally manages to gain the upper hand and shoots Molina in the arm before jumping out onto the casino floor. After a frantic search for the trigger having been kicked around in the scuffle of everyone trying to run out, Carter and Lee end up together again with Carter noticing the grenade's light in Lee's mouth and starts pulling the tape off of Lee's lower head. Lee manages to spit the bomb out seconds before Hu Li finds the trigger and detonates it.
Lee reveals to Carter what Tan's plans are before a furious Hu Li interrupts, throwing a spear at them. Carter tells Lee to head to the penthouse to prevent Tan from escaping with the plates while he handles Hu Li. Carter taunts Hu Li saying he won't hold back fighting her given her encounters with him, then they brawl with Hu Li charging after Carter with a sword taken from one of the Chinese statues and Carter trying his best to escape her advances. Hu Li eventually nabs Carter, pinning him with the sword at his heart. Carter eventually triumphs after accidentally knocking Hu Li out by falling onto a statue, releasing the swinging halberd in its hand that stabs her. Carter discovers the dollar bills he took as evidence saved him, then proceeds to insult Hu Li before running off to find Lee at the penthouse.
In the penthouse, Reign opens the safe and takes the plates, running into Tan as he leaves. After Reign announces he is cutting their deal short and keeping the plates, Tan stabs him in a surprise betrayal. Lee confronts Tan, taking a gun from Reign's body and corners Tan just as Carter appears. After a tense standoff, where Tan admits he killed Lee's father, Tan knocks the gun away from Lee in Carter's direction. As Tan manages to retrieve it, and after only seconds from shooting in Carter's direction, Lee kicks Tan out through the window, where he falls to his demise landing on a parked cab. Hu Li then abruptly enters, holding an armed time bomb. Realising the situation Lee and Carter leap out of the window just as the bomb goes off, killing Hu Li and the two narrowing escaping by sliding down on decoration wires with their jackets. The wires snap, and they swing into the casino's flag with their momentum sending them into the path of oncoming traffic. Through Lee's nimble skill and Carter's dumb luck, they narrowly escape being hit by three successive trucks.
Later, at the airport, Sterling thanks Lee for successfully solving the case. Molina says she would like to thank Lee, and proceeds to kiss him, an event witnessed from afar by Carter. All three plan to go their separate ways; Carter to Los Angeles, Molina to New York, and Lee back to Hong Kong. After Molina heads for her flight, Lee and Carter share one last goodbye. Lee then gives Carter, who graciously declines at first, his father's police badge, stating that he can finally "let it go". In return, Carter gives Lee the $10,000 that he won from gambling at Caesar's Palace which potentially contains the counterfeit money. Lee is more critical in his refusal of the money, but Carter is able to persuade Lee to take the money and forget about his sense of duty as a cop just for once. After Lee reveals that he has always wanted to go to Madison Square Garden and watch a New York Knicks basketball game, Carter tells Lee he could go for one more vacation and the two of them decide to take another vacation in the Big Apple, dancing off to Michael Jackson's "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough".
- Aside from Chan and Tucker no other characters or actors from the first film appear. However, on the DVD release of the film, a deleted scene featured Philip Baker Hall reprising his role of Captain Diel from the first film. Carter speaks with the Captain about his stay in Hong Kong and his involvement in the Triad case. Director, Brett Ratner states that while he would have loved to include the scene in the final cut (essentially giving Hall a cameo appearance), it did not advance the plot. Therefore, it was left out.
- In the car, after Lee supposedly thinks that Carter is dead, he was listening to "I'll Be Missing You" by P. Diddy.
- During the falling money scene, some of the prop cash blew out of a window. Bystanders thought the cash was real and kept it, some actually spending it. The fake cash was so realistic that the studio was prohibited from making it ever again.
- The Red Dragon Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada owned by Ricky Tan (John Lone) and Steven Reign (Alan King) is actually the Desert Inn hotel and casino. There were red lights shined at the hotel to make it a scarlet color. Following the closure of the 50 year old Las Vegas Strip property in August 2000 by new owner Steve Wynn, the Rush Hour 2 production moved in and redesigned parts of the property as a Chinese themed casino/hotel for the movie. Shortly after the movie wrapped production in Las Vegas the buildings used in the film were imploded to make way for the new $2.7 billion dollar Wynn Las Vegas resort. Furthermore, the Red Dragon is the name of another movie that Brett Ratner directed, as well as the name of a real casino in Mountlake Terrace, Washington, USA.
- Prop gaming chips were produced for the film, ranging in denominations from $1 to $1,000,000. These are much sought after by both film fans and gaming collectors.
- Zhang Ziyi only speaks two words of English in the film, being her famous line "Some apple?", as she didn't know the language at the time of filming. Jackie Chan served as her translator on the set.
- Zhang Ziyi's character's name, "Hu Li", means "fox."
- Both Rush Hour films begin in Hong Kong and end in a United States airport.
- In a chase scene, as Chris Tucker is running up the stairs, an old Chinese woman gets blocked by him, and she shouts "Step aside, Kobe!" with reference to Kobe Bryant. Tucker said on the Jay Leno show that during filming, many locals mistook him for Bryant.
- In one of the outtakes Chris Tucker mentioned that the antagonist (Ricky Tan) will not be around for Rush Hour 3. Rush Hour 3 was released six years later on August 10, 2007.
- In the scene where Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker went inside the business suite, there was a cameo of Ernie Reyes Jr as the worker and was being chased by Chan and Tucker.
- Carter: "Why the hell you didn't tell me you had a bomb in your mouth?"
- Lee': "I did"
- Carter: "No you didn't"
- Lee': "I said "mmm!""
- Carter: "What the hell is "mmm!"
- Lee': "mmm, mmm. Boom!"
- — Carter and Lee
Carter: Who got killed, Lee?
Carter: Who died, Lee?
Carter: Detective Yu?
Lee: Not Yu, you!
Lee: Do you understand the words that are coming out of my mouth?
Carter: Don't nobody understand the words that are comin' out of your mouth man
- Chris Tucker as Detective James Carter
- Jackie Chan as Chief Inspector Lee
- Roselyn Sanchez as Isabella Molina
- Zhang Ziyi as Hu Li
- John Lone as Ricky Tan
- Harris Yulin as Sterling
- Alan King as Steven Reign
- Kenneth Tsang as Captain Chin
- Ernie Reyes as Zing
- Don Cheadle as Kenny (uncredited)