ok, let me try and review this outright masterpiece of entertainment!
first up, it would be appropriate to state *** SPOILERS AHEAD *** here. that said, when they have gone and made a film about a character last seen falling some distance from a helicopter, bouncing off a car and hitting the ground, it's difficult to know exactly what a spoiler would be. i will try and refrain from sharing some of the "surprises" in the film, in particular the cameo appearances (although the imdb page list them so be careful), but there's not much in the way of margin for surprise when the protagonist of the piece is impossibly indestructible.
the film starts with Chelios (the magnificent Jason Statham) being scooped up from the aforementioned helicopter "incident" and being bundled into a mysterious black van. as it turns out, for no given but clearly obvious reasons, someone very much wishes to get their hands on his apparently invincible heart.
it's not so much the loss of his heart that spring Chelios into action, but the next organ that they wish to take. those of you have seen the infamous "red band" trailer for the film know exactly what they wish to cut out (off) him next, and so he goes on the predictable but rather enjoyable rampage to claim his heart back.
the trick this time being that he has an artificial heart in him, and instead of requiring adrenalin to keep it going, this time he needs regular jolts of electricity to make sure it keeps beating.
well, beating or whatever it is that an artificial heart does. cue, then, many inventive scenes of Chelios needing to get electrocuted. not that, of course, it's all just him shoving electric cables into his mouth or on his body.....
....for those of you worried about there being no repeat of the magnificent "public display of affection" adrenalin charging scene from the first film, fear not at all. the wonderful Amy Smart returns as Eve, and sure enough she is conveniently on hand for another bout of "public display of affection", this time to create static electricity rather than the urgent dose of adrenalin. in a film full of laughs, this is perhaps the funniest scene, and it is certainly more public and more exotic than the similar part in Crank. oh yeah, this scene makes the film worth watching on its own!
so then, another 80 minutes of Jason Statham on a mission to absolutely knack everyone that crosses his path as he attempts to seek reunification with his heart, all filmed on a "modestly budgeted" digital camera and edited by someone who felt that the 'blipverts' out of Max Headroom was the only way to go. is it, as if my review so far hasn't hinted at, worthwhile?
oh, hell yes! if something like the mental Shoot Em Up raised the bar for all out action entertainment, this one smashes the bar into very small pieces, sticks it back together and hits a large number of people with it. Jason Statham famously turned down the chance to be in RockNRolla to appear in this and Transporter 3, and wisely so. Statham is not a bad actor, but he's clearly very comfortable with the idea of being a much worshiped and appreciated "cult actor", clearly having as much fun making this kind of film as us audiences have watching it. neither Statham or anyone else involved with the film is under any pretense of any great or noble art being on display here; the film is so much the better for it as they can just get on with the business of entertainment.
the only possible film that could be made which would be more insane entertainment than this is Crank 3. let us all hope that they are working on that film right now!!!
be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!