The popular action star, Jason Statham, made his debut in the movie Crank before landing the recurring role of Lee Christmas in the Expendables franchise. Although Johnny Knoxville from Jackass was initially considered for the lead role, it’s safe to say that Statham was the right choice for the part. Crank, a thrilling action movie released in 2006, is now available for streaming on Netflix, allowing viewers to experience an adrenaline rush without leaving their homes.
Crank has a unique take on the “race against time” storyline, which has been used in many other film franchises. Typically, this plot involves a countdown to defuse a bomb. However, in Crank, Jason Statham’s character, Chev Chelios, becomes the ticking time bomb that needs to be neutralized.
Chelios is a hitman who works for an organized crime syndicate. He is tasked with assassinating mafia boss Don Kim, but an up-and-coming criminal, Ricky Verona, conspires with Chelios’ boss to kill him instead to avoid retaliation from Kim’s gang. The storyline of Crank bears resemblance to that of Speed, as in this film, Chelios’ heart is the bomb, and Statham is the bus.
In one scene, Verona and his henchmen inject Chelios with a synthetic Chinese drug, impeding the flow of adrenaline, which eventually stops his heart, killing him. From this point forward, the movie intensifies, with Statham pushing himself to dangerous extremes while frantically searching for an antidote to save his life.
Overall, Crank is an action-packed, adrenaline-fueled thriller that leaves viewers on the edge of their seats, making it a must-watch for anyone looking for a thrilling movie experience.
Chelios is determined to cure his condition and get revenge against Carlito, Verona, and their goons, even if it means engaging in dangerous acts like fighting with police officers, having public sex, and taking large amounts of stimulants. The movie Crank is similar to Speed, but with Chelios’ heart as the bomb and Jason Statham as the bus. What sets Crank apart is the use of comic relief, making it more of a dark comedy with lots of action instead of just an action movie with a few jokes. Despite its ridiculousness, the deadpan delivery and extreme action sequences make you cringe and laugh out loud at the same time. What’s most impressive is that Statham performed most of his own fight and car stunt sequences, including the helicopter fight scene 3,000 feet above Los Angeles.
Crank received mixed to average reviews, with a 62 percent critical score and a 71 percent audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. Interestingly, both positive and negative reviews seem to agree that the movie is gratuitous, ridiculous, and unbelievably over-the-top. In other words, whether or not you enjoy this Jason Statham film will depend on your expectations going into it.
One review captures this perfectly, describing Crank as “totally ridiculous, unbelievable, exhausting, and pretty much just plain stupid.” However, the reviewer concludes that “that’s what makes it fun.” Despite its inherent ridiculousness, the film’s deadpan delivery and extreme action sequences are both cringe-worthy and laugh-out-loud funny, which is no easy feat.
In terms of revenue, the film Crank earned almost $43 million despite having a modest budget of only $12 million. Although this movie featuring Jason Statham was released before the concept of achieving MCU-level box office numbers, it was lucrative enough to warrant a sequel titled Crank: High Voltage which was released in 2009.
Given that Crank requires you to suspend disbelief to fully enjoy it, if you can simply sit back and allow the story to unfold, you won’t be disappointed. Jason Statham offers a commanding performance that should not be overlooked, and his dedication to the absurdity of Crank makes it one of his best roles to date.