After a few years of appearing in adult dramas, “Underworld” star Kate Beckinsale is kicking butt again. The former action star clenches her fists in “Jolt,” a hard-hitting comedy now streaming on Amazon Prime Video.
Lindy (Beckinsale) gets mad. Really, really mad.
Doctors believe her uncontrolled rage is rooted in a troubled childhood but whatever the reason, no one is safe from her wrath. Loud chewers. Rude waiters. Men who wear flip flops with jeans. It doesn’t take much to set her off.
She’s tried a laundry list of “cures,” but nothing quelled her murderous anger until psychiatrist Dr. Munchin (Stanley Tucci) outfitted her with a barbaric shock treatment that allows her to live a normal-ish life. Still, she could erupt at any time.
The shock treatment, Dr. Munchin tells her, is just one element of her recovery. She must reconcile her past, he tells her, work through her issues and maybe even date.
Reluctantly, she agrees to try some human contact in the form of a dinner date with an accountant named Justin (Jai Courtney). After a rocky start she discovers he’s the first person in ages she doesn’t want to beat bloody for the slightest infraction.
He’s sweet but unfortunately after their first sleepover, he’s discovered dead, shot in the head.
Heartbroken, she goes on a revenge bender while police (Laverne Cox and Bobby Cannavale) investigate her as a prime suspect in Justin’s untimely passing.
Dr. Munchin advises her to leave it alone, but she can’t. “Some people cry,” she says. “Some write s**t poetry. I hurt people.”
“Jolt” is a bit of blood-stained fun. Zippy, occasionally funny and empowering—“What is it with gross old men always underestimating women!”—it delivers the kind of neck-breaking fight scenes you expect from a movie about a person with violent impulse control issues. Director Tanya Wexler stages several generic-but-frenetic action scenes—a car chase, fist fights—but also manages to inject some life into a laugh out loud escape from a hospital nursery.
“Jolt” is what is often called a Refrigerator Movie. It makes enough sense as you watch it but later, while you stand in front of the fridge looking for sandwich ingredients, you think back and realize there are plot holes big enough for Kate Beckinsale to walk through.
The movie has enough jolts to keep you entertained for ninety minutes, but I’m not sure I am as interested in the set up to a sequel as the filmmakers are.