Just like the 1972 Charles Bronson vehicle “The Mechanic” and the 2011 Jason Statham-starring remake, the best scenes in “Mechanic: Resurrection” contain almost no dialogue. When the sequel is really clicking, it becomes action cinema in its purest visual form: just one buff, taciturn dude doing major damage to his enemies.
But those scenes constitute only about half of “Mechanic: Resurrection.” For the rest of the movie’s running time, Statham makes moony-eyes at costar Jessica Alba and tries to convince the viewer — unconvincingly — that his movie’s plot matters.
Once again, Statham plays Arthur Bishop, a highly skilled assassin specializing in making cold-blooded murders look accidental. After an interminable setup, director Dennis Gansel and his writers get around to the main plot of “Mechanic: Resurrection,” which involves Bishop completing three impossible jobs to save the life of his new girlfriend, Gina (played by Alba).
There’s too much explanation in this film, and too many generically sleazy crime bosses (played by the likes of Sam Hazeldine and Tommy Lee Jones). It’s also a bummer that this “Mechanic” wastes Hong Kong action legend Michelle Yeoh in what amounts to a glorified cameo. (If she’d been Bishop’s girlfriend, this would have been a much better picture.)
Still, every 10 minutes or so — when Bishop has to scale a skyscraper or blow up a submarine or hop onto a moving hang-glider — this movie is actually a kick. When it comes out on home video, fast-forward to the stunts. You won’t miss a thing.
MPAA rating: R, for violence throughout and language
Running time: 1 hour, 39 minutes
Playing: In general release