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Film / Speed 2: Cruise Control

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Rush hour hits the water.

The sequel to Speed, released in the year 1997.

Turns out that Annie's (Sandra Bullock) relationship with Jack didn't work out, and now she is seeing another police officer named Alex (Jason Patric). He takes her to a trip to the Caribbean, aboard the cruise ship Seabourn Legend. Unfortunately, the easy-going vacation comes to a halt as a disgruntled computer programmer named John Geiger (Willem Dafoe) takes control of the ship, and sets it up with explosives.

This sequel provides examples of:

  • Artistic License – Physics: The cruise liner slows down faster when it's just running down yachts than it is when it crashes into the island.
  • Award-Bait Song: Make Tonight Beautiful by Tamia.
  • Bat Deduction: Alex first gets suspicious when Geiger doesn't watches a golf tournament in the bar after being so persnickety about his good clubs to the maitre'd and in a later scene he very quickly goes from "bad guy somehow brought a lot of bombs into the ship" to "they had to be really tiny bombs (said as he notices some dice on a nearby counter)" to "Geiger had the bombs concealed in his golf balls" and goes looking for him.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Granted, it's something of a Pyrrhic Victory, but Annie and Alex are so busy being lovey-dovey that they fail to realize that the bad guy technically achieved virtually everything he set out to do. There was no way the cruise ship would be seaworthy again after crashing nearly a mile inland, he blew up the freighter and killed several people he had a grudge against, including the captain. If not for the slight matter of him getting blown up with the freighter and the diamonds falling into the sea and being salvaged by a third party, Geiger would have achieved a perfect scorecard. And considering Geiger was dying from a terminal illness, the only downside for him is he didn't get to live it up during his remaining time like he'd planned.
  • Best Served Cold: Geiger is steamed at the cruise line for firing him when he was diagnosed with a terminal illness.
  • Busman's Holiday: The main characters are supposed to be on a holiday.
  • Chainsaw Good: Annie finds two in a closet and uses one of them to saw through a metal door.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Alex knowing American Sign Language and there's a deaf teenager on board the ship.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • The guy whose Jaguar (license plate: TUNEMAN) gets wrecked in the first movie appears again to have his boat (the Tune Man) commandeered by Alex.
    • The reason Annie and Jack aren't together: Relationships based on intense experiences never work.
  • Demoted to Extra: Mac from the first film only has a cameo at the start of the film. Actor Joe Morton goes uncredited for his return.
  • "Die Hard" on an X: The passengers are unable to jump ship without being sucked into the ship's propellers. (Just roll with it.)
  • Die Laughing: Geiger laughs after his plane crashes onto an oil tanker before it explodes.
  • Faux Action Girl: Annie turns into this, which is one of the film's many complaints. Annie is a vital part to everyone's survival in the first movie as she's driving the bus, but without that premise in this film, she just turns into a wisecracking, frazzled heroine without much to do.
  • Flashed-Badge Hijack: It happens again, to the same guy, in the middle of the Caribbean. The owner lampshades the sheer absurdity of this.
  • Genre Shift: While the movie does make something of an attempt at retaining the action thriller nature of its prequel (though the result is really something closer in tone to Die Hard), for the most part it's more akin to a disaster movie, which is especially pronounced when the liner runs aground.
  • Going Commando: Several trapped passengers strip to block vents and stop smoke pouring through.
    Harvey: "I wanna know why she hasn’t taken anything off yet!"
    Sheri: "Cause I’m not wearing any underwear, Harvey."
  • Hero Insurance: No one seems too concerned about an oil tanker exploding in the Caribbean.
  • Hollywood Hacking: Oddly enough played somewhat realistically: Geiger has to physically get on the ship to control it, install receivers, and he is the guy who programmed the ship to begin with.
  • Impressive Pyrotechnics: Goodbye Geiger and his plane... as well as the oil tanker he crashed into.
  • Karmic Jackpot: Maurice, a.k.a. "Tuneman" from the first film, is the third party that recovers the diamonds. Which, no doubt, more than compensates him for his poor Jaguar and the condo he just bought.
  • Lighter and Softer: Rated PG-13 instead of the R rating that the first film got. Made all the more obvious by the evident touches of campiness seen throughout the movie, in both the performances of most of the cast and the dialogue. This perhaps was not for the better, given the first film's more serious nature.
  • Linked List Clue Methodology: Geiger hiding his detonators in a set of golf clubs. Alex gets suspicious when he notices Geiger isn't paying attention to a pro golf tournament on TV ... because as everyone knows, one who enjoys playing a sport always enjoys watching it.
  • Made of Explodium: One of the boats that the Seabourn Legend accidentally destroys.
  • Mass "Oh, Crap!": We cut to several people, one after another, having the same reaction as they realize what the ship is about to crash into.
  • Mythology Gag: Annie getting cut off in traffic by a replica bus from the first film.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Played with; the main characters manage to divert the ship away from colliding head-on with the oil tanker — only to realize that they've instead set it on a collision course with a nearby marina, which ends up causing a lot more damage, especially considering that the tanker eventually gets blown up anyway. However, had the originally-planned collision taken place then everybody on-board both ships would have died instantly, whereas there are no casualties from the liner running aground, other than Geiger eventually getting blown up with the tanker. So, it's not really a bad trade-off in that sense, it'll just require a lot more cleaning up after the fact.
  • Not Now, Kiddo: "Mommy, there's a big boat!" "There are a lot of big boats here, honey." Poor kid doesn't know enough English to say, "Yeah, but most of them aren't smashing through the pier straight at us!"
  • Novelization: By George Ryan.
  • Oddly Named Sequel 2: Electric Boogaloo: At first, Speed was probably named Speed 1 : Bus Control.
  • Ominous Multiple Screens: Geiger delivers a Motive Rant via an entire wall of these.
  • Playing Drunk: Geiger walks onto the bridge pretending to be a lost drunken passenger, falls over and secretly plants a bug while getting up off the floor.
  • Pun-Based Title: "Cruise Control" is the name of a feature on some automobiles that will cause the car to automatically maintain a particular speed without the driver needing to use the gas or brake pedals.
  • Put the "Laughter" in "Slaughter": Geiger seems to be having a good time.
  • Put on a Bus: Amusingly enough, Jack, given the content of the first film, since his actor Keanu Reeves declined to return.
  • Recycled Premise: A vehicle cannot stop due to the bombs that the villain planted on it, just like in the previous film. Annie even points it out at one point by saying that it was not a nice experience to live through once.
  • Red Right Hand: Geiger's blood-cleansing leeches (he's a classicist when it comes to medicine).
  • Runaway Train: Ok, runaway boat, but all the pieces fit: Geiger's tampering with the automated navigation system means that there is no way to control the ship and several scenes revolve around trying to do something to slow down, stop, or change directions, most of which either don't work because it's a damned huge ship or because Geiger sabotages things once he figures out what the heroes are trying to do.
  • Sequel Escalation: Speed 2 upgrades the premise from "Bomb on a Bus" to "Bomb on a Cruise Ship". Minus Keanu.
  • Sequel Goes Foreign: The movie takes place in the Caribbean.
  • Shoe Phone: Geiger concealed the majority of his kit for mayhem (miniature bombs and computer equipment for hacking the ship) inside of his golf gear.
  • Shoot the Television: Alex enjoys shooting enlarged Geiger with his shotgun...
  • Slasher Smile: Geiger is played by Willem Dafoe. It probably would be easier to count the times he doesn't gives one.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: Just like in the first movie, a hijacked vehicle crashes into a much larger sitting vehicle, resulting in a much bigger explosion. In this case, Geiger's plane flying into an oil tanker.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Alex to Jack. It's obvious that the absolute bare minimum was done to edit the script when Keanu Reeves refused to do the film.
  • Televisually Transmitted Disease: Geiger, a computer programmer, claims that he contracted copper poisoning from his prolonged time around computers. Given that he "treats" this condition by sticking leeches on his chest, it's obvious that he's as granola as California —a nut, a fruit, and a flake.
  • Terminally-Ill Criminal: The Big Bad John Geiger has a fatal disease and uses the time he has left to get revenge on the people he has a grudge against.
  • Women Drivers: Annie had a sarcastic one-liner about how she lost her driver's license because of speeding in the first film, but she was a Badass Driver regardless. In this film, in the little time she drives a car in the Book Ends (while trying pass the test to get back said license), her brand of Drives Like Crazy is an Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny! Ditz that terrifies the DMV man forced to sit at her side a second time.