Zechs revs up by reviewing Crank 2: High Voltage (2009). So yes, he had mass quantities of sugar and caffeine when writing this review.
I'm a lover of movies, in fact, I love all kinds of movies. Of them all, action movies especially. However, I also do enjoy sci-fi, drama, comedy, and horror. Romance? Eh, if the babe is hot and there are tits to go along with the show it might be deemed watchable for me. Otherwise, I rather watch Batman & Robin (1997) for 24 hours straight than see a cheesy romance flick. Still, I cannot see every movie known to man when they come out, or only hear good stuff about them. Therefore, I'll put my behind down and review the flick. Enter this column, where I finally state was the movie truly worth the price of viewing or not. Be it old or new. I'm here to watch some damn films. That said I'm putting it out there. You want a film you love reviewed I haven't seen? Reply to these threads or PM me! I want to see what you can throw at me.
On today's menu is Crank 2: High Voltage (2009). Now honestly, however awesome the trailers where I just had a bad feeling about this film. Those worries where only heightened by the fact all my friends I knew stated they didn't love this flick. So, I decided to pass it when it came in theaters and even more when it was released on dvd. So what changed my mind? Well, that would be my fellow Outhouser, eltopo who reviewed the flick less than a month ago (you can find his review here). After listening to it, then attending his podcast where he again talked of it. That was enough, his brainwashing had worked and I decided to give this movie a chance.
Though I haven't seen the original (but I probably will now), is about one Chev Chelios (Jason Statham) whose having another really bad day. This time around, some Triads have removed his heart and replaced it with an artificial one. The only way this poor fellow can keep his heart a ticking is if he's juiced with electricity. Throughout the way, he meets some unique and utterly hilarious characters and that pretty sums up what plot there is of this film.
Really this film isn't trying to be masterpiece theater here, save for when it come's to being a fantastic action flick. So those looking for high art or Oscar nominating performances here, geez what the heck where you on? That said going into that mindset, this film utterly rocks. This film is the bastard child if the show 24 and the video game Grand Theft Auto had dirty filthy sex. Heck the opening credits, and the way this film treks around in map form look something straight from the video game. The only thing this movie was missing was a star timer of how much trouble Chev gets into when he's running around finding the bastards who took his heart.
The action just utterly is over the top and fun as hell. The movie is all over the place in terms of what we get. I won't spoil you of most of the fun but seeing a gunfight in a strip club was hilarious as hell to me. Even more of where two bullets land and watching some stripper's plastic boobs start failing like a popped balloon. But for me the high crowning point of this film's action was seeing an epic homage to Japanese Kaiju flicks (aka Giant Monster Man in Suit) films. The fight Chev has with his Triad rival in this form borders on not only epic but also one of the greatest fights I've ever seen in American films ever. Unlike some other recent action films, it doesn't even blow it's wad of action after this fight. There's still much more insanity that kept me entertained enough never to fast forward. So kudos to the originality and the fact it had the balls to do homage to Godzilla films. For that, alone I salute you with some extra points.
Through it all Chev just show's us how much a beast he really is. Honestly, the punishment this dude take's made me think the dude's father must have been a slasher from a horror film. This dude take's jolt after jolt and just keeps on ticking. Heck the damage he take's at the film's climax and the fact he's still kicking people's asses amazed me. The way he does it is utterly startling and awing. Chev truly is an artist in his craft of destruction. All of this is thanks to the performance of Jason Statham who really with this franchise and the first two Transporter flicks (not to mention Snatch) really is becoming one of my favorite present day action film stars. The dude just radiates bad assery and you know the bad guys are so screwed with just the looks. Not to mention the ways he keeps his heart a ticking where insanely brilliant and the writer or writers behind this had to be either high or are action geniuses for the ways of keeping Chev alive.
So really, is there anything bad about this film? Honestly, I have one minor nitpick. When we see a porn protest, I was expecting some female boobs be a flying and bouncing freely. When one friggin porn star is doing and worse less than ten seconds I just have to say, WHAT THE HELL!? COME ON! You have paid professionals who flash their skin all the time and we couldn't see more skin? Damn their greedy hearts! Thankfully, the females who habit one of the villains in this piece have no issues of convorting nakedly about. So to those ladies who did that. Thank you for doing what some female porn stars couldn't!
Speaking of hot females, I never much was a fan of Amy Smart (save for her topless scene in Road Trip and her frequent voicing on Robot Chicken). Here I absolutely love her. She's utterly smoking as a stripper/girlfriend of Chev helping him along the way. The scene with her and Chev well do the wild thing in front of people damn can she grind. Not to mention her with the lesbian stripper hitting on her. Damn again. I really have to start watching more of her movies again.
Then the polar opposite is Bai Ling as some Chinese whore who is freed by Chev and she follows him around the entire film thinking she has herself a white knight boyfriend. Honestly, her character trait which are subtitles even though she's speaking English though horribly was funny. However, I have to admit much like Chev I found her annoying after five minutes of having her hanging around him. Just when I figure, she's gone for good she has to show up again during the final fight. Honestly, she should have exited the stage after the hilarious thing that happens to her when her and Chev's paths cross after he ditches her the first time. While I know Bai Ling is a fantastic actor, here all she has is this one note character who I wish unholy death upon at the end and didn't even get that. Plus she can't hold a candle to the smoking Amy Smart. So really I wish if there's a Crank 3. Kill this character off in ironic fashion.
The remaining supporting players of this piece are awesomely rounded out from the Doc Miles who helps Chev played perfectly by Dwight Yoakam to the head Triad, Poon Dong played by, well I just couldn't believe who was playing him. The actor played the part so damn well I didn't even realize it was a dude who had recently passed on this year. But back to the utterly hilarious Doc Miles. This character just absolutely rules and is played to perfection by Yoakam. I really wish the dude had more scenes cause every one of them in this film was utter gold. Gold pretty much says about every other cast member of this flick as well. Besides the porn star cameos, I couldn't believe who else showed up in this flick. God where their parts just utterly as awesome as this film was.
So there you have it. I really loved this film. It's a highly enjoyable thrill ride that never let's up and offers some insanely over the top action, violence, sex, and comedy. My only problems of this film where petty and honestly can't drag the score down when this film has a homage kaiju films with a man in suit form of Jason Statham battling it out. When a film goes to that level it truly deserves the score, I give it. Though before I end this thank you again oh mighty Eltopo you where so right in recommending this film!
5 out of 5
Tune in next week when I look at Shoot Em Up (2007). Though a revamped review on Punisher: War Zone (2008) might still show up before it.