Crank: High Voltage Shoves a Shot Gun Straight Up Your Ass
You may recall that there were 17 movies that I would like to see in 2009. Crank: High Voltage combines three of them, diverse cast, western Kaiju, and nudity including wang and man balls. Win!
High Voltage starts off where the first one left off. Jasom Statham as Chev Chelios falls from the sky, bounces off a car, and lands face down in the street. A black van drives up and triad thugs jump out, shovel in hand. They peel Chev off the pavement and toss him into the van. He wakes up on an operating table in some dirty massage parlor and looks down to see his chest wide open. As the surgeons work to remove Chev’s impossibly still beating heart, Johnny Vang walks in to gloat. Chev watches as Vang drops cigarette ash and even spits on his heart. The surgeons kick Vang out and finally remove Chev’s heart replacing it with the robotic one that he spends the rest of the movie trying to keep ticking. He passes out.
Chev awakes after a woman shoves a thermometer up his ass. He sees two surgeons discussing what parts to remove next. When one of them circles Chev’s meaty dip stick, Chev jumps off the table and beats the shit out of both of them. He escapes down a hall and out a door where some hapless triad makes the mistake of pointing a gun and Chev. He easily disarms rent-a-triad and sneaks away. Wouldn’t you know, another triad tries to shoot Chev with a shotgun. Chev shoots triad, discards his pistol, and picks up said triad’s shotgun. Wait, I’ve played this game before. A third triad tries to shoot Chev but runs out of bullets. As he tries to reload his revolver, Chev walks up, knocks him down with the butt of the shotgun, and shoves the barrel straight up the triad’s ass. At this point, the elderly couple in front of us walked out.
If you were to watch the events that I just described and would have joined the elderly couple (the fuck were they expecting?) and walked out, Crank: High Voltage is not for you. However, if you are like me, Jim, Garth, and Brian and would have stayed in theater laughing your ass off, well my friend, Crank: High Voltage is the movie you have been waiting your entire life to see!
As it is explained in the movie with a very kitschy infomercial, Chev’s artificial heart has an external battery pack that should keep it running. Should that pack run out of juice, the internal battery will last for one hour unless Chev is able to find another battery. Or zap himself with a tazer. Or jump start himself with a car battery. Or grab the leads of a power box. Or fuck Amy Smart in the middle of a race track (turns out friction can generate current). Fortunately, the movie rarely slows down to let your brain think about just how implausible all of this is. I suppose the director figures that if you’re in the theater and you’re okay with the fact that Chev survived falling out of a fucking helicopter, you’re ability to suspend disbelieve is quite strong.
It’s clear that everyone involved in this film knew exactly what kind of schlock they were making. It’s absolutely wonderful. The cinematography is surprisingly fresh for what amounts to a modern interpretation of an exploitation film. The scenes are artfully shot with camera angles that really put you right into the action. I felt exhausted walking out of the theater. There’s certainly room for a third flick and if it happens, I can almost guarandamntee I’ll be there.
This movie isn’t for everyone, especially not the elderly couple who walked out after the first ten minutes (maybe they were expecting an artful drama about someone living with an artificial heart?). But if you enjoyed Crank, Crank: High Voltage kicks the original premise straight up in the face and just keeps going. It’s stupid. It’s fun. It must bee seen on a giant screen. Stick around for the credits because you’ll get some fun outtakes.