Posted on Monday, January 11th, 2016 by Jacob Hall
The Rush Hour film series seems to have mostly vanished into the abyss, but it’s important to remember that these movies were huge for a brief window in the late ’90s and early ’00s. While the first film was a hit in 1998, its 2001 sequel benefitted from every single person in existence having a copy of part one in their burgeoning DVD library, grossing nearly $100 million more than its predecessor at the box office. This cannot be overstated: every single person who made the leap of faith to the DVD format in 1997 owned Rush Hour. This is an undisputed scientific fact. And then 2007’s Rush Hour 3 was greeted with shrugs and the series died a quiet and (mostly) dignified death.
We’ve known for some time now that the Frankensteins at CBS were resurrecting Rush Hour for television, but we never actually believed it until the first footage arrived. Yes, the Rush Hour TV series trailer is here and it is, indeed, a thing that exists.
Produced by original director Brett Ratner and Scrubs creator Bill Lawrence (with a pilot directed by National Treasure’s Jon Turteltaub), CBS’ Rush Hour series maintains the buddy cop template of the original movie. A fast-talking Los Angeles cop finds himself partnered with a visiting detective from Hong Kong whose hands are deadly weapons. There’s culture shock. They don’t get along. Until they do. The original movies functioned because of the surprising chemistry between stars Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan – this oddball duo gave this tired framework some much-needed energy.
So, what happens when you remove Tucker and Chan from the equation?
We won’t cast any final judgment on stars John Foo and Justin Hires, but this trailer does them zero favors. Compared to the motormouthed Tucker and the lightning-fast Chan, both newcomers look downright lethargic, trapped within the confines of a television budget and scope. These guys may be fine actors and maybe they’ll showcase some chemistry in the actual series, but this looks more like a direct-to-video sequel than a proper reboot. Everything looks smaller and slower and sadder. The jokes seem tired. The action looks chopped to smithereens. The warmth and humor normally evident in Lawrence’s other shows isn’t here. Like war, this series appears to be good for absolutely nothing.
Could this be the result of a bad trailer? Maybe. Because that is one awful piece of marketing that seems to have gone out of its way to make the show look as unappealing and derivative as possible. The Rush Hour movies aren’t masterpieces by any stretch of the imagination, but they have a definite energy to them. They’re committed to what they are. CBS’ show looks like week-old leftovers, reheated and served to people who vaguely remember enjoying that meal a long time ago.
In any case, Rush Hour will get a fighting chance to prove its worth when it premieres on March 31, 2016.Cool Posts From Around the Web: