Rush Hour 2 is everything fans of the original loved and everything else the skeptics wanted to see. This time, Chan has time to do his elaborate action scenes, but more than the action, his dynamic with Chris Tucker has improved to enhance the straight comedy scenes too. .
The first Rush Hour often felt like Chris Tucker was doing his act AT Jackie. It was funny, but there wasn't much interaction. This time, Tucker and Chan really play off of each other for the comedy scenes. They can each be each other's straight men, whereas in the first one only Chan played it straight. Each do their share of reacting to each other, either with Chan rolling his eyeballs or Tucker making some stand-up style speech about how lame Chan's character is. .
Some of the amazing fight scenes include one on a bamboo scaffolding with Chan weaving in between the rods, and an extended scene using the furniture in a massage parlor. Some random stunts include Chan devising a way to climb across water, and an amazing stunt with a Las Vegas cashier slot. Chris Tucker has some great fight scenes too, especially versus Zhang Ziyi. It shows you can have successful action scenes with non-martial artists too. .
The great thing is how nothing feels overly big. They put more money into the schedule for Chan's fights, but his fighting uses real-world props to keep things feeling simple. It must have cost a lot to fly the crew to Hong Kong, but since most of Chan's movies take place in Hong Kong anyway, it doesn't feel like an overly elaborate setting. Brett Ratner used his budget skillfully to contribute to the real world feel of the original. .
There are a few missed opportunities. For example, Chan fights Don Cheadle in a supply closet but uses none of the supplies as props. Sure, the plot didn't need a long fight there, but it would have been fun. It also would have been nice to see more of Hong Kong, but the plot moves quickly enough so you can't really dwell on the 'what if?'s.