Reel Society

Reviews for the latest movies in theaters and on DVD.

Crank: High Voltage

Crank 2

Review by Matthew Frendo

Let me start by saying, if I could give out negative ratings, this film would definitely get one.  It was atrocious in every sense.  I was seriously hoping to never think about this piece of crap again, but when the head reviewer asks...

Let's start with the fact that Chev Chelios (Jason Statham, playing one of the stupidestly named characters in recent, or even not recent, history) DIED in the first one (which, I never saw...a fact I am overjoyed about after seeing the sequel).  That's correct...he died, yet he's still here for the sequel.  The reason?  Because his heart is strong enough to live through a 20,000 foot fall.  Why this would matter, since his body would be smashed to bits, isn't discussed in the film.  However, a rich mobster-type who was older and dying wanted the strong heart for his own, so he had Chev kidnapped, and his heart taken out, being replaced by a battery run machine.  If this sounds dumb on paper, I assure you that it's worse on screen.

What follows is a nonsensical plot (sort of) where Chev goes after his heart, fighting with everyone on the way.  Of course, his battery-powered heart only has an hour’s worth of juice, so he has to recharge it with energy.  This could take the form of attaching his tongue and nipple to a car battery, or by having sex on the track of a horse race while the audience cheers him on (yes, that is seriously a scene from this horrendous movie).  The filmmakers obviously think that fast editing cuts will equal suspenseful action, and it does not.  The scenes make no sense, the storyline is barely hanging by a thread, and the acting...well...I don't know how that was because the extremely annoying fast cuts don't let an actor on screen long enough to judge their worth. 

The soundtrack to the film was done by Mike Patton (ex-Faith No More, Mr. Bungle, Fantomas vocalist, and renowned musical giant) who may be just ashamed after seeing the finished product.  Being a fan of his earlier work, I was extremely disappointed.  As for Statham, the friend I saw it with went into it saying that he was a Statham fan.  As we were leaving, he stated that he doesn't think he can say that anymore.  Yes, it was so bad that it actually took fans AWAY from the actors involved.  I can really say that this may be the worst movie I have ever seen.

I kind of hope you all go see it, so I'm not the only moron who wasted his time and money...
0 / 5 stars

Review by Chris Maitland

In 2006 Chev Chelios ([Jason Statham) led a chaos-ridden day through Los Angeles. The reason for this chaos is because Chinese mobsters had given him a lethal poison, and the only way he can keep his heart from failing was to keep his adrenaline up. Basically that is all you need to know entering the sequel to Crank (appropriately titled Crank:High Voltage). Let’s just say the over-the top of the first is still there.


This go round, Chev’s superhuman heart has been stolen by more mobsters. Chev has to get his heart back from notorious gangster Poon Dong (the now-late David Carradine) who now has Chev’s heart inside of him. Chev himself is left with an artificial heart, and he can only keep it alive with regular doses of electricity. More chaos ensues, and Chev is running around the city trying to pick up the pieces.


This movie is even more over the top than the first one (if such a thing is possible). So if you don’t enjoy completely ridiculous action films with unfathomable plots that have zero chance of ever occurring in the real world, then just stay home. I would say that this actually makes the events of the first film look believable. The action has been beefed up even more, and is so frequent and so brutal that it's just insane. Every line of reality has been crossed. The people that didn’t like this film just looked at it the wrong way. It's not meant to be taken seriously -  it’s an over-the top-film in every aspect and that’s why its great. Its fun, creative and just a straight adrenaline rush.


Statham looks like he is having a great time in this film. Chev Chelios is a scumbag and is so radically different from most other Statham characters that it's enjoyable to watch. Watching him get into get into the different scenarios in this film is a blast. You can tell the filmmakers truly enjoy their material and Statham enjoys being the star.


The only down points about this film it can be a little bit too dumb for its own good (yeah, I know). There is a lot of WTF moments. Most of them are good but a couple of are a little too strange and unnecessary. Also I would say it’s a little bit of a step down from the first installment. But you will dig it if you enjoyed the first one.


Bottom line: if you want a film that delivers entertainment for an hour and a half then this is for you. This is violent, fun, and funny as hell. This movie is a high-energy  good time. Leave your brain at the door and sit back and watch as Jason Statham kicks your ass for 94 minutes.


4 / 5 stars 

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