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Crank: High Voltage

He was dead...But he got better 

Year: 2009 
Running Time:
Aspect Ratio: Unknown 
Certificate: BBFC 18 Cert – Not suitable for under 18s 
Subtitles: This film is expected to have certain elements which are subtitled, but it is not expected that the entire film will contain them. 
Directed by Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor 
Starring: Jason Statham, Amy Smart, Dwight Yoakam  
An image from Crank: High Voltage

Having survived a fall from a helicopter at the end of Neveldine and Taylor's first instalment in the Crank series, hit man Chev Chelios (Statham) awakes to discover that Chinese gangsters have stolen his heart and replaced it with an artificial one. After consulting his friend, underground physician Doc Miles (Yoakam), Chelios learns that he must keep his synthetic heart electrically charged to stay alive. Some of Chelios's sources of electricity – a car battery, a Taser – are more conventional than others (alfresco sex, anyone?).

On his quest to retrieve his heart and kill those responsible for his transplant, Chelios encounters his old girlfriend Eve (Smart), who has been working in a strip club for three months under the assumption that her boyfriend was dead. The film then progresses at a frenetic pace, interspersed with amusing asides and a Godzilla-inspired fight sequence.

Some critics have argued that Crank: High Voltage is repellent and misogynistic. While the film may not be liked by all, its absurdity and refusal to take itself seriously dispel the arguments and allow it to be appreciated as entertaining escapism.

Those who enjoyed Crank and are expecting more of the same will not be disappointed. Jason Statham demonstrates that he is one of the most watchable action stars today, and the supporting cast gleefully join in the hyperactive mayhem. In nearly his last completed screen role, the late David Carradine is almost unrecognisable as the mob boss using Chelios's reputedly indestructible heart to boost his own health. For those new to the Crank experience, disengage your brain, sit back and enjoy the ride.

James McLachlan

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Screenings of this film:

2009/2010 Autumn Term (35mm)
2009/2010 Autumn Term (35mm)