3 out of 5 stars
Many people suffer from anger management issues, but for Kate Beckinsale’s newest character, Lindy, she takes it to a whole new level. She has acted out against everyone in her life that comes into her path and manages to cause her frustration. Violence is always involved and this leads her to be institutionalised for treatment as a young child. Doctors try everything from military training to medications to help this angry young woman overcome her issues. Until they come upon an experimental method that involves an extreme form of shock treatment.
This method finally allows her to walk around in public and even get a job as a bouncer at a local club. Then she is encouraged by her therapist, Dr. Munchin (Stanley Tucci), to attempt an even more intimate level of human contact by going out on a date. She tries to make this work and even though she has difficulties settling into her time with Justin (Jai Courtney), there is something about him that calms her soul. As they look to progress their relationship beyond the initial meeting her new friend is found dead. Lindy is initially considered the prime suspect by Detective Vicars (Bobby Cannavale) and Detective Nevin (Laverne Cox). This leads her to elude the police altogether and investigate the murder of the one man who freed her from her anger issues.
Despite getting an extensive backstory for Beckinsale’s potential franchise-inspiring character, most of her tale goes unexplained. Audiences must be satisfied with the inexplicable nature of her income stream, the method of Munchin’s practice and her motivation to investigate Justin’s murder. These elements are secondary in relationship to her tendency to act out against anyone who pushes her buttons. In amongst all of the fist-fighting action, she maintains her glam-punk style, perfect makeup, and walks around in high-heeled boots. Suppose viewers are willing to embrace this fantasy world that she operates in and accept the physics-defying nature of her abilities. In that case, this might be the franchise to embrace.
As she comes off her run in the Underworld series, Beckinsale settles into this role with relative ease. Even though some of the slow-motion elements seem unnecessary and take away from the kinetic nature of the narrative, she handles the action sequences naturally. Her ability to make it all happen in the restricting wardrobe is another skill altogether. Then, supporting talents like Stanley Tucci and Bobby Cannavale proves that this project has the financial backing to ensure that this will turn into more than a one-off excursion.
Lindy is not a government agent, she is not a trained assassin and her volatile nature defines her every move. Which makes her the perfect choice for a future storyline of anarchy and for a group of people who will try to harness her unique skills. Every step of this screenplay is overlaid with foul language, sexual innuendo and enough violence to make Martin Scorcese look away. Yet, it should not be a shock to anyone that there will be more chapters of Jolt to come.
Reel Dialogue: Where is the line between good and evil?
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it? Jeremiah 17:9
Beckinsale’s character proves to be an anti-hero that lives with ambiguity to a moral centre. Jolt proves that the human condition has not changed throughout history. In this microcosm of the human experience, Lindy demonstrates that the line between good and evil is very fine. Even though Lindy operates in a fanciful world, the story will connect with anyone trying to find the answers to sin in this world.
Throughout history or even by picking up the Bible, it is evident that humanity may try to rise above the evil that is deep in their hearts, but continually fails. This could lead many to a level of depression, mainly when evil infiltrates their lives. What are we to do? What is the answer?
Interestingly, the answer can be found in something that may be seen as exceptionally horrific. The Bible shows that humanity's salvation is located in the actions of a man who was executed during the Roman Empire. At first, it may sound counterintuitive, but what has proven to be striking to many who study the backstory find it to be profound and life-changing.
Jolt is available on Amazon Studios.