Speed

Question: When Jack is fighting on the roof of the train,he makes the quip "yeah..but I'm taller" just before the other guys head is knocked off. What does he mean by this? He was laying down at the time, height doesn't come into it.

Answer: He's taller now because he has his head while the villain does not!

Grumpy Scot

Question: When they notice there's a gap in the freeway they keep to that route. However, there were other routes available. Why not take them?

Answer: If they had, there might have been the possibility that to get to these routes they would have to go down a different road and depending on which route they take they might have to slow down to make the turn which would likely cause the bus to drop below 50 mph. Better to just keep going straight and keep the bus going. There's also the possibility that had they taken a different route, they would have to deal with a lot of traffic especially if there was traffic stopped at a red light. By using the highway, there'd be no traffic lights and less traffic to deal with.

Question: I know this would end the movie, but when Jack is running alongside the bus, trying to get on before it reaches 50, why doesn't he shoot one of the tires? This would've taken the bus to a stop.

Answer: Shooting out car tires is a bit of a movie myth, and bus tires are much more heavily reinforced, so it would be very difficult to hit and puncture a tire successfully. It would also be very dangerous to fire a gun at a small, rapidly-moving target on a busy highway, and a person shooting at the bus would almost certainly make the driver speed up to get away. Finally, one of the tires does blow out at the airport, which makes virtually no difference to the bus's speed or motion.

Sierra1 Premium member

Question: What did Harry mean when he said to Jack "And I got shot... Another few inches and they would have given the medal to my wife." I still can't make complete sense of that line.

Gavin Jackson

Chosen answer: Jack shot Harry in the upper leg, and Harry is presumably referring to the proximity of the femoral artery, a large and vital blood vessel in the thigh. If Jack's shot had hit him there, he would almost certainly have died within minutes, and they would have to give the bravery medal to his widow.

Sierra1 Premium member

Question: On the phone conversation, Howard Payne claims that it took him two full years of his life setting up that elevator job and investing himself in it. So how is he able to move out of his old retirement home and relocate in an apartment building in downtown LA near Pershing Square, rig 2 city buses with a handheld remote with C4 bombs, rig his old home, cut the hole on the street underneath the garbage can and think of that revenge plot and plan and set up everything else in just a month. That's just not enough time for him to do all that.

Answer: Apart from setting the bombs and a camera on the buses, the rest of the setup (the apartment, booby-trapped house, hole under the garbage can) could have been part of the elevator job, which Payne just re-used.

Sierra1 Premium member

Question: When Jack catches up to the bus for the first time he is running along the side of it and he smashes the window in the door, what would have happened if the driver stopped the bus and let him on to see what the problem was? Was the bomber just hoping that that wouldn't happen?

dan coakley..

Chosen answer: Probably not. The bomber knew given the time he called Jack, it would be impossible for him to get to the bus in the morning peak.

XIII

Question: I don't quite understand the part of the movie regarding the camera recording inside of the bus. It seems obvious they can pick up the signal to the bus via UHF, then tape it, then make the loop so the same tape runs over and over, fooling Dennis Hopper long enough to facilitate the rescue. But how do they transmit the images from the loop back to Hopper's safehouse?

Answer: Payne obviously has some sort of transmitter attached to the camera, feeding the picture back to him. By broadcasting from the much more powerful TV van transmitter on the same frequency, they would effectively swamp the camera signal with their own, so Payne would see their looped tape, rather than the real images from the camera. Although not shown, Jack could also simply have disconnected Payne's camera as soon as the looped tape ran, to prevent the possibility of the real signal getting through and revealing their ruse.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: How would you get on the roof of a moving subway? We don't see it in the movie (Jack looks up and starts to climb - cut - Jack is on the roof.... Howard cries 'I'm coming for you Jack and runs - cut - Howard is behind Jack on the roof. after the fight when Howard 'lost his head' - cut - Jack is inside the subway again...).

Answer: Ventilation shafts or roof panels.

Toolio

Question: Where did Jack put his handcuff key after unlocking the cuffs from the guy who shot the bus driver? He could have used them to unlock Annie later.

Answer: It is never shown or mentioned what happened to the key so any answer would be speculation. A lot of time has passed between when Jack uses the key and the subway scene. Jack could have lost the key or intentionally put it down and not picked it back up at any point.

BaconIsMyBFF

Also, he would not have known he was going to need the key. So why keep it.

Ssiscool Premium member

Answer: Howard might have been using special handcuffs that required a different kind of key. Seeing as how he always plans ahead, it's not unlikely.

Question: How did Howard Payne get Jack Traven's cell number that he contacted him on when they were trying to unload the bus driver? Doubly so given that Jack got it from the guy in the convertible, so it's not even his phone.

Answer: First, Jack uses the guy's cell phone to call Harry and tell him the bomber is still alive. So now Harry has the cell number. Later, right after Jack tells McMahon that Payne is "crazy not stupid" then McMahon tells Jack that Harry thinks Payne is a cop, Payne is on the police line wanting to talk to Jack, so Jack tells McMahon to give Payne his number.

Super Grover Premium member

Question: How many people were on the bus throughout the movie (counting Jack, Annie, Sam, & Helen)?

Answer: There appears to be 20. On IMDb, some have character names and others are listed as "bus passenger".

Macalou

Character mistake: There is no way on earth that a police officer would shoot a hostage in the thigh to 'take them out of the equation'. Anyone who suggested such a thing would likely be taken out and shot themselves. Bullet wounds to the thigh are often fatal, as an injury to the femoral artery causes massive and frequently unstoppable blood loss. Breaking the femur often leads to fat embolisms as bone marrow gets into the bloodstream and then to the lungs. In fact a broken femur is a life threatening injury in itself, and a shattered femur - a typical bullet injury - would almost always result in a total amputation. You cannot aim carefully enough to avoid the bone or artery as their position in the body varies, (as will the bullet trajectory upon impact). Jack is an experienced cop and would know the potentially disastrous consequences of shooting someone in the thigh. He'd shoot him in the foot.

Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

Suggested correction: Jack is a cop and as such he would have extensive training in first aid, including treating bullet wounds. He would know perfectly well that shooting someone in the thigh was almost certain to cause a life threatening injury. He would shoot him in the foot.

Jack and Harry aren't just "cops," they're elite members of S.W.A.T., meaning they employ "special weapons and tactics." The hostage shooting is extreme, in any case; but the film wanted to quickly portray Jack as unorthodox and a bit of a loose cannon.

Charles Austin Miller

And as an "an elite member of S.W.A.T." Jack would be even more aware of the fact that a bullet wound to the thigh would probably kill or permanently disable his partner. I am not questioning the plot line of showing Jack to be a renegade by having him shoot a hostage, I am simply stating the obvious. He absolutely would not shoot him in the thigh.

No, he didn't. An actor fired a blank round at another actor and a special effects technician detonated a blood squib that had been installed under the second actor's costume, thus creating a fictional representation of logically absurd situation. It's a plot hole.

Then the entire movie is a plot hole. Speaking factually, you could just as easily say that a random passenger could never drive a commercial bus at highway speeds and make 175-foot ramp jumps with it. And, yet, there it is, and that's the story the producers wanted to tell. Call it a factual error, certainly, but the films are doing precisely what the screenwriters and director intended.

Charles Austin Miller

Except for blatant continuity errors, your comment negates every posting on this site. It's a mistake, plain and simple, lazy screenwriting, sloppy plotting, factually inaccurate. The original posting is valid, this is not a chatroom and I have nothing else to say on the matter.

Precisely. That's what makes it a character mistake, per the rules of this site.

Tailkinker and CA Miller are correct. This is a character mistake in an over the top action thriller. In real life cops don't shoot hostages in the thigh but buses don't fly over gaps in bridges either. If you can't watch Speed with a willing suspension of disbelief then it's not the movie for you. Enjoying fantasy action with its flaws does not validate mistakes in other movies and claiming it is lazy writing etc just makes a mistake picker seem uptight.

Suggested correction: It's made abundantly clear that shooting hostages is NOT something that they're trained to do - Jack merely suggests it during one of their 'pop quiz' exchanges; Harry's incredulous reaction should be more than enough to indicate that this is not standard operating procedure.

Tailkinker Premium member

More mistakes in Speed

Howard Payne: See, I'm in charge here! I drop this stick, and they pick your friend here up with a sponge! Are you ready to die, friend?
Harry: Fuck you!
Howard Payne: Oh! In two hundred years we've gone from "I regret but I have one life to give for my country" to "Fuck you!"?

More quotes from Speed

Trivia: The famous "Dukes of Hazzard" sequence was the filmmakers' wry commentary on the uncompleted state of Interstate 105, which had become a running joke among LA motorists. It was finally (and quite uncoincidentally) completed in late 1993 shortly before the film's release, years behind schedule.

More trivia for Speed

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