Speed (movie)

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Missing image
Movie poster for Speed

Speed is a 1994 film directed by Jan de Bont, starring Keanu Reeves, Sandra Bullock (her breakout role), and Dennis Hopper.

Written by Graham Yost, the story is about an Los Angeles police officer (Reeves) who has to stop a insane bomber/extortionist (Hopper) who has rigged a bomb on a public transit bus (a City of Santa Monica Big Blue Bus). The bomb has multiple triggers, including one that will detonate if the bus goes slower than 50 mi/h (80 km/h). The cop and a young woman (Bullock) struggle to keep the bus moving at an acceptable speed despite the congested traffic of the city, while local police provide escort, clear traffic, plan the best route for the bus, and search for the bomber.

One of the movie's most famous scenes involved the bus having to jump over a gap in an elevated freeway-to-freeway ramp which was still under construction. That scene, as well as much of the movie, were all filmed on California's Interstate 105.

There is a sequel, Speed 2: Cruise Control, which is set on a cruise ship. Only Sandra Bullock returned to reprise her role. Willem Dafoe played the villain. The sequel was a critical and commercial flop.

The Speed movies were parodied by the Father Ted episode "Speed 3", in which Father Dougal McGuire is trapped on a milk float with a bomb that will detonate if the float goes slower than 4 mi/h (6.4 km/h). A further ironic use of the "Speed" theme came with "Speed for Thespians," an Academy Award-nominated short film, where a group of actors attempt to play out Chekhov's "The Bear" on a New York City bus. An additional parody can be seen in the Leslie Nielsen movie Spy Hard, featuring bus driver Ray Charles.

The basic premise of extortion using a bomb that will trigger automatically if a vehicle tries to stop unless a ransom is paid was not original to this movie. In 1965 the first episode of Thunderbirds, "Trapped in the Sky," had a supersonic airliner threatened with a bomb in its landing gear and the occupants are threatened by radiation poisoning by the craft's power source overwhelming its ablative shielding in hours; in Rod Serling's 1966 TV-movie The Doomsday Flight, Edmond O'Brien's bomb would detonate if the airliner descended below 5,000 feet (1500 m); and in the 1975 Japanese movie Crisis Express109 (Shinkansen Daibakuha) (shown in English as The Bullet Train), starring Sonny Chiba, a Shinkansen train will be destroyed if its speed drops below 80 km/h.

The difference with this film is that the bus initially runs the immediate risk of collisions in a congested traffic area that would have fatally stopped and/or slowed it down and triggered the bomb. So, before the bomb can be addressed, the bus must desperately maneuver throughout the city, unable to slow down for anything with an inexperienced driver until it could be directed to an clear area.

External links

hr:Brzina (film) ja:スピード_(映画)


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