"Drive Angry" is all over the road.
Part of it is an exploitation movie - the kind of thing you'd see in the 1970s at a drive-in that specialized in sleaze. Part of it is a revenge flick. And part of it is some strange dissertation about the afterlife that's pretty much incomprehensible once you think about it.
Part of it works, on a certain level, but not as well as director Patrick Lussier's "My Bloody Valentine," which knew it was exploitive and played the whole thing tongue-in-cheek. This one, also in 3-D, doesn't have a screenplay that's nearly as smart as the Tarantino/Rodriguez "Grindhouse" double-bill, which is a movie in the same vein.
First, this is an ultra-violent film filled with slayings, nudity and sex. It opens with violence and such liberal use of the f-word that I lost track of the times it was used in the first 15 minutes.
Nicolas Cage, who is everywhere these days (It is said he owes huge debts, so he stars in just about any movie he's offered), plays Milton, a tough guy with a mission. Seems his daughter fell in with a bad crowd. Not the kind of crowd you might think of at first, but rather a cult of satanists led by Jonah King (Billy Burke, who plays Bella's father in the "Twilight" series).
Jonah has not only killed Milton's daughter, but he also has taken her newborn child so he can sacrifice the infant at the full moon. (I know it's preposterous, but you have to suspend disbelief to follow this.) So now Milton is after Jonah and all the satanists in Jonah's cult. In the first few minutes, he mows people down and shoots a guy's hand off in his quest.
Pursuing Milton is The Accountant (William Fichtner), who is trying to bring him back to ... well, from whence he came. Milton pairs up with gorgeous waitress Piper (Amber Heard, "Zombieland") and the two take off together with The Accountant in pursuit.
The 3-D is well-done, with all kinds of gore, axes and action flying in your face. The violence is completely over the top, and so is the nudity. Geez. And one very, uh, intimate, violent scene is lifted directly from the far superior "Shoot-‘Em-Up," which starred Clive Owen.
This is meant to shock with its graphic violence and nudity. Most likely you already know whether you should drive out to see it.