Published on August 23, 2007
Hanuman spotted it years ago, and Jackie Chan's career is still on the rocks. No one in Hollywood has released more misfires in the past decade.
To be fair, "Rush Hour 3" isn't one of them, but because of Chan's sliding fortunes, the film has received a scathing reception. Four out of five critics have panned it.
Thankfully the attacks are not so much on Chan as the decision to do another sequel purely for cash reasons. After the 1998 original and the 2001 sequel, most people assumed the series was dead.
Still, for the family, "Rush Hour 3" is a good pick. It's not intelligent, like "Bourne Ultimatum", so no one will have to think too hard.
Best of all, it has Chan doing what he does best: slapstick and stunts that still stun and surprise.
Also, you get to see Paris, the location for this new caper.
Chan's bad luck with silly movies such as "Around the World in 80 Days" and "The Medallion" sank him. In "Shanghai Knights" he became one of the few "Chinamen" allowed to party in Queen Victoria's court, spoiling his image among Asian viewers.
Chan's agent must have realised - much too belatedly - that his star was in a rut when the only vehicle left was "Rush Hour 3".
Mercifully, Chan has friends. Original "Rush Hour" director Brett Radner has since become a big name. His "X-Men: Last Stand" established him as a filmmaker who can do no wrong.
The other plus is that European giants such as Max Von Sydow and Roman Polanski lend their weight to the sequel. Polanski alone is worth the price of the ticket.
The plot - which revolves around the mysterious assassination attempt of Chan's boss, Ambassador Han (played by Tsi Ma) - reunites Chris Tucker with Chan.
It is a relief to know that, despite tough times, Chan will never have to endure the humiliation of having to play a Japanese driver who speaks fluent Cantonese, as he did for "Cannonball Run", one of his first Hollywood films.