Speed

Where I Watched it: Amazon

English Audio Description?: Yes

Somewhere out there, I’m being judged because people keep clicking on reviews of films I hadn’t seen already, and just now feel like getting around to. This is not that. It’s close, but not really. My history with Speed is less complicated. I wasn’t old enough at the time to see an R rated film on my own, but luckily for me, back in the 90’s, big films like this always made themselves onto TV for their big network premiere a year or two later. However, in the case of Speed, that means I watched the edited for content version, and now that I’m blind, I’ve still never seen that rather famous decapitation.

I’ve now heard it described, and I’ve also seen a scene where you see him standing up a little for a second before it awkwardly cuts away, and we’re just left with a quick quip from Keanu, but that’s it. Can something like Speed even hold up with audio description? I mean, it’s just an unstoppable bus. That’s all it is. I know there ahve been multiple attempts to recreate the success of this with “things that can’t stop”, including a very misinformed sequel, but Speed is a classic for a reason. it’s just good action fun. No way around that one. It has 90’s action tension all over it, and Keanu is really good in the role, as is Sandra Bullock in what is basically accepted as her breakout role.

I was with the film all the way until the end, when teh film forces a romance between Reeves and Bullock, when there really isn’t anything to suggest a possibility of this at any other point in the film. Reeves says something about how relationships based on trauma don’t last, to which Bullock says that they’ll just have to base theirs on sex.

The hilarious unintended consequence of all of that is that Jason Patric replaced Reeves for the sequel, so one of these characters must not be good at sex. Maybe there’s some other reason she’s with Patric, and they explain something, but no human should ever have to sit through Cruise Control to find out. Easily one of the worst sequels ever made.

But, for my blind compadres, and anyone else who still hasn’t seen Speed, I’ve now seen this film in two very different settings, and I think this film kicks ass right up until they decide Reeves and bullock need to make some babies. It’s probably a masterclass on why there’s usually only one cherry on top, and they dn’t just keep trying to add more after they’ve reached perfection.

Final Grade: A-

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