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Mechanic: Resurrection
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When the deceitful actions of a cunning but beautiful woman force him to return to the life he left behind, Arthur Bishop’s life is in danger as he has to complete an impossible list of assassinations of the most dangerous men in the world.

Mechanic: Resurrection (2016)

Overview
Arthur Bishop thought he had put his murderous past behind him when his most formidable foe kidnaps the love of his life. Now he is forced to travel the globe to complete three impossible assassinations, and do what he does best, make them look like accidents.

Mechanic: Resurrection ( 2016-08-25 )

Arthur Bishop thought he had put his murderous past behind him when his most formidable foe kidnaps the love of his life. Now he is forced to travel the globe to complete three impossible assassinations, and do what he does best, make them look like accidents.

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Speaking of media that criticises its own audience, I‘ve gotta give it to Crank 2, which hates its audience more than any film I’ve seen before or since.

For those who haven’t seen it, the premise of Crank is that the protagonist, Chev Chelios (played by Jason Statham), has been injected with a slow-acting poison that will eventually stop his heart unless he can delay its onset by keeping his adrenaline levels elevated. What follows is an old-school revenge romp in which Chelios repeatedly performs needlessly dangerous stunts in order to keep his adrenaline high going until he reaches his target. The film climaxes with a mid-air scuffle as Chelios and his foe fall from a helicopter, after which they both splatter on the pavement below.

Crank was reasonably well-reviewed, with many critics remarking that the only thing that kept it from being a literal video game movie was the lack of an on-screen life meter. Both the fans and the studio immediately began clamouring for a sequel (in spite of the protagonist’s apparent death), which the film’s creators strongly opposed.

The pro-sequel crowd eventually won out, and Crank 2 went into production. This time, the premise was even more absurd: having miraculously survived becoming street pizza, Chelios is kidnapped by the lackies of an elderly Chinese mob boss, who wishes to steal Chelios’ super-powerful heart and have it transplanted into himself. Chelios would then be forced to rely on a battery-powered electric heart, with the heart’s battery meter - i.e., the actual on-screen life meter whose absence the critics had remarked upon in the original film - featuring heavily in the promotional material.

In the actual film, however, the meter breaks just a few minutes after Chelios acquires it, and it’s never replaced. That’s your first warning sign.

The film goes on to deliberately frustrate the audience’s expectations even further by refusing to let us see Chelios fight. The first Crank film features a number of fight scenes with remarkable choreography, but there’s none of that here; instead, each time Chelios gets involved in a major brawl, some conceit or happenstance denies the audience the anticipated spectacle.

In the first case, the camera remains outside in the street while Chelios fights his way through an entire house full of gang members. The effect is hilarious, but it’s not what the audience came for.

In another case, a fight is depicted as a bizarre Godzilla-esque fantasy sequence featuring a stunt man flailing clumsily about in a giant rubber Jason Statham costume; again, it’s funny as hell, but again, the audience is denied the draw of Statham’s martial arts performance.

In yet a third case, Chelios is prevented from participating altogether, and the camera remains focused on him as he ineffectually struggles to enter the fray; meanwhile, a handful of comedy relief mooks win the fight without him.

Of course, that entire portion of the film turns out to be a shaggy dog story, anyway - none of it has anything to do with retrieving Chelios’ stolen heart. He’s unwittingly become sidetracked into a series of irrelevant conflicts, while the actual mastermind behind the theft - who’s steadily been built up as the film’s ultimate villain - appears only briefly, before being defeated off-screen by the protagonist’s sidekick’s girlfriend.

On top of all that, there’s the matter of electric heart itself. It’s repeatedly foreshadowed that Chelios will eventually figure out how to “charge up” and become an unstoppable fighting machine, but when the time finally comes, precisely the opposite happens - he succeeds only in incapacitating himself and missing the climactic battle, showing up after the fight is over and proceeding to inadvertently set his girlfriend on fire before breaking the fourth wall and giving the audience the finger in psychedelic slow motion.

It’s that finger that really sums up the film’s thesis: fuck you.

You want well-choreographed fight scenes? Fuck you!

You want threatening villains? Fuck you!

You want a plot that actually resolves? Fuck you!

The whole film is just gleefully, extravagantly contemptuous of its viewers, and revels in deliberately violating audience expectations at every turn - and to cap it off, it wraps the whole thing up by turning to everybody who thinks they’re in on the joke and going: hey - fuck you, too!