Speed (1994)
 - Restricted (For Violence, Strong Language and Mild Explicit References)
Running Time: 116 minutes (1 hour and 55 minutes)
Genre/s: Action
Released on June 10, 1994 (US Release Date, Available for Worldwide Viewing)
Presented by: 20th Century Fox 
Director: Jan De Bont
Writers: Joss Whedon and Graham Yost
Starring: Keanu Reeves, Sandra Bullock, Dennis Hopper, Joe Morton and Jeff Daniels

Prepare for rush hour! Welcome once again to Dateline Movies, and today we take a look back at one of Hollywood's best films ever, Speed, wherein we see Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves team-up for the first time and Dutch director Jan De Bont making his directorial debut. The movie was a surprise hit at the box-office and won 2 Oscars at the 67th Academy Awards in 1995.

What is the movie about?

After being thwarted by Los Angeles SWAT officers Jack Traven, played by Reeves (The Matrix) and Harry Temple played by Daniels (Dumb and Dumber) from attempting to hold an elevator car full of innocent civilians in exchange for ransom, Howard Payne played by Hopper (EdTV) devices yet another devious plan to hold hostage a Los Angeles bus full of passengers.  But this time his plan would include a revenge to the two SWAT officers who foil his fiendish plan.

Payne sets up a bomb in a bus, daring Jack to save the passengers from certain death, he asks for a huge amount of cash if he wants to see everyone come out alive and unharmed. Jack, running to the rescue, simply can't just stop the bus. Why you ask? According to Payne himself, once the bus goes over the speed of 50, the bomb will be activated and if the speed meter goes anywhere below 50, the bomb will detonate. With time running out (because there is no more road to travel at such high speed), Jack must buckle up with the bus passengers for the wildest ride of their lives!

What I think of the movie?

The movie follows the usual revenge kind of genre in most of the action films back at the time. It carries the formula, which shows the bad guy gunning for the good guy, who probably ruined his/her reputation back then. Regardless of the slightly predictable story, the writers were able to deliver a promising plot. The special effects were also good. Seeing the bus go through a whole lot of craziness was an irresistible treat.

The performances of various actors and actresses, especially those of it's leads Keanu Reeves, Sandra Bullock and the late Dennis Hopper make accolade worthy performances. Reeves suits as a decent cop. Bullock fits the role as a quirky and humorous bus passenger and Hopper makes for a very sinister criminal.

This is overall a true classic, comprising of amazing performances,non-stop explosive action from beginning to end, a good story plot and surprising events.

Movie Snippet

The bus jump scene in the movie Speed was not included in the original script. While driving around Los Angeles, California one day, director Jan De Bont noticed that a part of the I-105 freeway is missing and got the idea to use it in the movie.  The City of Los Angeles gave the permission to shoot the bus jump scene on the actual freeway at the junction of Harbor 110 and Century 105 freeways during the finishing stage of its construction before it was opened to the general public. Although the bridge was already existing at the time of the shooting, it was digitally erased.  It took about two and a half weeks to finish shooting this particular scene.

Speed is available on iTunes.


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