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3.7 out of 5 stars
Crank [Blu-ray]
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54 of 59 people found the following review helpful
on November 27, 2006
Say this for "Crank," it definitely isn't boring. And it is certainly original and audacious. It is also ridiculous and will not hold up under any scrutiny. I, however, dismiss all logical criticisms of this movie, and any like it, with a wave of the hand. This movie exists solely to pop, rock and shock the audience. It is fake, over the top, ridiculous and outrageous. And that is precisely why it is one of the freshest, funniest and best pure action flicks in a long while. Sure there are more studied and complex action thrillers out there, but this is the most fun, junk-action pic this side of "Road House" and its cult action ilk. Not just a dumb campfest though, mind you; oh it's certainly none too brainy, but it has aspirations to shock and thrill beyond just having a bunch of guys shoot at each other or crash cars into things. There is a lot of that here, but the scenarios that spawn such things have to be seen to be believed. Ditto this movie. Everything here is taken to another level. Logical restrictions be damned. And the movie, and audience, is better for it.

There is, of course, already a movie called "Speed," and a terrific one at that; but had the title not been taken, this film would personify truth in advertising had it been able to use it. In a plot similar to the Keaue Reeves VS the bus classic, hitman and all around bad-a*s (we know this because he grimaces and talks in one of those threatening whispers ala Clint Eastwood and Steven Seagal) Jason Statham is injected with a virus known as "The Beijing Cocktail" that will explode his heart if its rate drops too low. You can only imagine all the different things he uses to keep his heart rate consistently above average: from waffle irons to nasal inhalers, deliberators to public sex, surfing atop motorcycles to jumping out of windows, the movie takes the `everything but the kitchen sink approach' and exploits the full potential of this outlandish premise, right up to its climax, which manages to feel truly bizarre, even for a movie in which you thought you've seen everything that could possibly come off as bizarre already. Yep, it just keeps on pushing those genre conventions.

Statham is good in a role that basically requires him to play the transporter again, although he loses his cool far more often in this film and spews far more expletives. However, if one were to imagine the Transporter's reaction to being injected with this type of poison, this is pretty much how we would expect his reaction, and the film, to play out. Amy Smart is good too in a minimalist role. Strong, stylish direction helps. If you're movie is essentially a cartoon already, cartoonish staging of the action is pretty much a key to making it work. The film is in on its own joke, which is a good thing. Rather than sell any of this as plausible, everyone involved simply goes with it.

As much as I dug this film, it admittedly won't be everyone's cup of tea. However, if you are someone who complains that action movies have become too generic, here's a big present for you.

"Crank" is often laugh-out-loud funny, jaw-on-the-floor audacious, and also manages to wring suspense out of its many close calls, and it never forgets to throw in a surprise here and there to keep things spicy.

Sounds like a five-star action pic to me.

(This DVD includes a feature called "family friendly audio" which, according to the description on the back of the DVD jacket, allows the viewer to "enjoy the film without the usual expletives." This might be a great feature for a romantic comedy or a drama of some educational value that you may want the kids to see and just wish there were a few unnecessary expletives blurted out, but on this movie this feature is as ridiculously amusing as the film itself. Yeah, block out the swear words for the kids, but let them see all the sex, nudity, and violence. There is no way to make a movie like this family friendly (and it should not be - that is one of its main allures). If you are a parent and all you care about is that your child does not hear some foul language, but the rest of the stuff they are going to see in films like this is okay, then you seriously have your priorities screwed up. So, I'm not sure why this feature is here. It just stuck me as so ridiculously odd and pointless I had to point it out (I'm sure others who see this will be thinking the same). But it's one more sign that in everything right down to the film's DVD technical features, "Crank" is an absurd, hilarious action classic.)
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on January 10, 2007
I just finished watching one heck of a crazy movie on Blu-ray DVD called Crank. This is one of the best looking and sounding movies on blu-ray to date! Crank is about a hit man named Chev Chelios (Jason Statham of Transporter 1 and 2), who messes up one of his jobs and lets the guy get away. The next morning when he wakes up he realizes he has been drugged. While Chev was sleeping, one of the town thugs named Ricky Verona had injected him with a lethal Chinese drug called the Beijing Cocktail which will kill him in one hour. Chev now is fighting for his life, and must be constantly moving by keeping his adrenalin pumping or his heart will stop and he will die. Crank is a movie that is way over the top at times and even sometimes just plain silly, but it keeps your attention and entertains you the entire time. Many people have criticized this movie for being too over the top, fake, ridiculous and outrageous. I agree with them but to a point. This movie is one action packed thrill ride with a crazy sense of humor. Crank has so much blood and violence at times that you find yourself just grossing out at all the blood and hacking off of body parts. On the other hand the humor and action are what give a great balance to this movie, and I mean some crazy humor. If you like action packed movies with non stop action and in the tradition of Running Scared and Kill Bill check out Crank.

DVD Special Features:
CRANK'D OUT MODE! Experience behind-the-scenes footage, making-of insights, interviews, directors commentary, alternate camera angles and more -- without having to navigate menus.
FAMILY-FRIENDLY AUDIO Enjoy the film without the usual expletives...should you so wish.
5.1 Dolby Digital Surround EX Audio and 2.0 Dolby Digital Audio
English and Spanish Subtitles

Blu-ray Special Features:
CRANK'D OUT MODE! Same great experience as with the DVD but with branching options to take you even deeper.
Family-Friendly Audio! Enjoy the film without the usual expletives
Shooting Crank
The Stunts of Crank
Pushing Crank
1080P High Definition
5.1 Dolby Digital Surround EX Audio
16x9 Widescreen
English and Spanish Subtitles
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on March 22, 2008
Hired assassin, Chev Chelios (Jason Statham, who seems to be shaping up to being the next Bruce Willis), wakes up one morning to discover that he has been injected with "the Beijing cocktail", a chemical that will ultimately kill him by slowing his heartbeat until it stops. The only way for him to avoid death is to keep his heart beating by indulging in activities that will cause an adrenaline rush. From cocaine sniffing, to high speed car chases, to some more extreme activities that I won't spoil and which have to be seen to be believed, Chelios is prepared to do anything in order to stay alive long enough to save his drug addled girlfriend (Amy Smart) and exact revenge on his would-be killer.

"Crank" borrows heavily on "Speed" and "D.O.A", but takes these stories one step further. The film contains so much action that even an ADD sufferer will be entertained and jokes aimed squarely at the type of people who made "American Pie" a run-away success. One review I read in a newspaper when this film was released branded it as being puerile, vulgar and offensive. I agree whole-heartedly with this assessment. However, it was because it was so puerile, vulgar and offensive that I enjoyed it so much. The makers of this film were not aiming to win the Best Picture Oscar. What they were aiming for was to make an entertaining and fun action film that can cause a whole cinema of people to cheer the hero along, and based on the reactions of the people whom I saw this film with, they succeeded. Now I can't wait until Neverdine and Taylor's next film is released.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on February 2, 2007
Just to second what others have said, flawless. This really is a perfect transfer. The sharpest, cleanest picture, when the film is meant to be sharp and clean, of any Blu-ray disc I have seen. Even the picture-in-picture commentary looks fantastic. For right now at least, 'Crank' is the king of the hill of live-action high definition.

(PS3 - 1080p projector - 92")
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51 of 66 people found the following review helpful
on September 6, 2006
Edmund O'Brien, in a 1950 film "Dead on Arrival" walks into a Police station and says, "I want to report a murder." Policeman asks: "Who's?" O'Brien replies: "My Own."
Mark Neveldine and Mark Taylor's (writers and co-directors) take on this 50 year+ material is the caustic, crazy, dizzying (do not sit too close to the screen or you will hurl), profane, bloody, violent "Crank" starring the sterling Jason Statham (2 "Transporters" as well as "Cellular" and "The Italian Job" and though I think that Daniel Craig will make a terrific James Bond, just think of the spin that Statham would have made on thee ole 007).
"Crank's" twist on this old chestnut of a story is that rogue Hitman Chev (short for Chevrolet, maybe?) Chelios (Statham) is injected with a new Millennium potion that is supposed to kill him in an hour unless he keeps moving as this stuff depletes his body of adrenaline: and move he does indeed from Beverly Hills to downtown L.A. robbing, killing, driving a car through the Glendale Galleria, causing havoc all along the way.
It's all a lot of irreverent and even ironic fun and Statham and Amy Smart as his ditsy girlfriend Eve are more than up to the task of being sexy and attractive. "Crank" will never win any awards but it sure is a fun way to spend an hour or so and what more can you ask of a film now that the so-called blockbusters have come and thankfully gone away.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on January 11, 2007
Excellent film. If you are smart and have a sense of humor and an eye/ear for spotting cultural references this movie will have you rolling around on the floor laughing and immediately replaying it as soon as the end credits roll.

The attention to detail makes Tarantino's clued-in references in Pulp Fiction and Reservoir Dogs look like the work of a noob. For instance - how many people noticed that the videogame played in the limo towards the end of the film was an 80's game called Berzerk and why would they include this game in the film? If you don't know the answer to this you might well be one of the critics who inexplicably reviewed this film so badly whilst obviously not coming close to understanding it.

The dialog is classic, the humor is faultless. My favorite line is said by the main character to his girlfriend when he tells her "You've had a nice lie in? Good. Listen - I've been fatally poisoned and a psychopath is heading over to your apartment to torture and kill you. I'll be over in a flash".

Even typing this review makes me want to go and play the film again. Highly recommended.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
So what would you do if you were injected with a lethal virus that slows down your heart and eventually kills you....well you do what this guy does, keep running and doing over the top insanity to maintain your heart rhythm up.
I have to admit this movie may seem silly but you have to give credit to the creators for crafting a very original movie. And honestly it is very original, the action, the humor, everything in this movie becomes an instant classic. The story is simple Chev Chelios(Statham) has been injected with a lethal virus and the only way to stat alive is keeping his adrenaline up. He needs to find the men responsible and the antidote before it's too late. It doesn't get more complicated than that, the rest is a great mix of humor and neat action scenes that will surely have you laughing and gasping for air due to its incredibility, definitely worth buying.

MY PERSONAL RATING: 3 ½ OUT OF 5
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
The classic DOA has a remake in Crank

The reason to watch this version is action star Jason Statham. The actor who did the Italian Job and the Transporter movies, is watchable as Chev.

The fun part of this film is the action, which the classic didn't. It is gritter and mnre suspenciful than the original DOA.

Statham has taken the action adventure film genre mantle that Chuck Norris, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Bruce Lee and others have had before. Howevwer in Jason's hands, he relishes the role and has fun with it. There is a sense of humor, like Burt Reynolds had in his Smokey movies. If there was an Oscar for action, Statham would win it.

Keep up with the action filled film or you may need the heart paddles for yourself

Bennet Pomerantz AUDIOWORLD
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on April 6, 2007
I'm very very picky about my action movies and this one is worth the trouble. Story line shmory line, this is an ACTION movie. I watch my action movies for action not a lesson in philosophy and religion. Kind of a heartbreaking movie, though, because he's dead no matter what. The man can't sleep or he slips in a coma. Going out with a bang with a freefall from a helicopter telling his woman how much he loved her... that's a film. You won't regret owning this, I promise you.

p.s. It is very possible that the negative reviewers are crackbabies. That is all.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on February 23, 2007
This movie is in the same vein as Jason Statham's Transporter movies, just not quite as good. The action is great, but some of the visual effects just don't work. I loved the ending though!

I have no clue why they chose to include a "family friendly" audio track for this movie. You can tell your kids, "Alright we're gonna watch Crank on the family friendly audio track, just close your eyes during the nudity, brutal death scenes, drug scenes, and oh yeah, during the public sex scene.

Recommend this one, but not a good one for family movie night!
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