Three years after the original Rush Hour (1998) emerged as a gem in the rusting buddy-movie crown, detectives Carter and Lee are back; this time in pursuit of a counterfeiting ring with a tragic link to Lee's past.
When the Hong Kong American Embassy explodes leaving two secret service agents dead, it falls upon Detective Inspector Lee (Jackie Chan) and the
visiting Detective Carter (Chris Tucker) to track down triad leader Ricky Tan, played by John Lone, and put an end to his counterfeiting operation.
From here, the plot expands to reveal Tan's past as the corrupt partner and suspected killer of Lee's policeman father, and the involvement of a Los Angeles gambling magnate, bringing the duo conveniently back to the US.
Initially playing as a mirrored re-make of the original, with Carter taking his turn as the culture-shocked fish out of water, Rush Hour 2 is nevertheless faster and funnier than the original.
Tucker's fast-talking Carter proves once-again to be the perfect foil for Chan's flying fists and this time seems more at ease with his greater role in the film's fight sequences. These battles - this time enhanced by Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000) starlet Ziyi Zhang, as triad member Hu Li - continue to show Chan's breath-taking mastery over both his own body and the kind of genuinely comedic stunt choreography that makes him the world's most popular action star.
Surpassing the original in every way, Rush Hour 2 is excellent kung-funny entertainment for the action movie fan.