Death Wish (2018)
Why do we like vigilante justice? I think that it is because someone does exactly what we are thinking should be done or we would like to do, ourselves. Also, vigilante justice in the movies is often portrayed as sticking up for ones that cannot stick up for themselves. If you are like me, then you enjoy rooting for the underdog.
Death Wish is about a doctor who decides to take matters into his own hands after an attack on his family. He decides to find the men responsible and serve up his own form of vigilante justice.
The movie was directed by Eli Roth and the noteworthy cast includes Bruce Willlis, Vincent D’Onofrio, Elisabeth Shue, Dean Norris, Camila Morrone, Beau Knapp, Kimberly Elise, Len Cariou, Jack Kesy, and Ronnie Gene Blevins.
I am not usually one to be into remakes. It seems like Hollywood remakes or reboots just about everything these days. Often, I say leave well enough alone, but sometimes the right remake idea comes along and the right actor is cast in the lead role.
In this case, Willis was very fitting for the role in Death Wish. It was his best performance since Looper (2012). He has been making a lot of B-rated straight to DVD movies lately, so it is nice to see him return to his former glory. I am glad to see that he has not gone the way of Nicolas Cage (spitting out one piece of trash after the next). Death Wish is a one-man-show and Bruce was clearly up for the task.
This movie is a scary concept because of how realistic it is. What I mean by that is that it shows just how worthless the police department and justice system can be sometimes. Too often, it is the people that deserve to see justice be done, that are the ones stuck without any justice at all. It also goes to show just how vulnerable we all are.
The likable Dean Norris has quickly been typecast as the police or detective type thanks to the success of the television series Breaking Bad. His part in this movie is good, but it does quickly make you think of Breaking Bad.
There are a few noticeable gruesome scenes in this movie that had Roth’s signature all over it. So far, I believe that this film is Roth’s best work as a director. He did a terrific job setting the tone of Death Wish and sticking with it throughout.
It has been a very long time since I have seen the original Death Wish (1974), but watching this version has made me want to go back and watch the original sometime soon. The new film is a quality remake done with today’s technology. The original movie is now 44 years old and it shows its age.
This movie is a murky suspense/thriller with good old fashioned popcorn-popping action. Willis as the protagonist doing bad for good reasons will keep you on the edge of your seat hoping that justice gets done.
I rate this movie an 8 on a scale of 1-10.
If you liked this film then you might also enjoy:
Death Wish (1974)
Death Sentence (2007)
The Brave One (2007)
Man on Fire (2004)
The Equalizer (2014)
The Punisher (2004)
Sin City (2005)
Harry Brown (2009)
John Wick (2014)
John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017)
Before seeing Prisoners, I guaranteed to people that it would be good. Sometimes it is as if I just know. I did not have any doubts about this movie at all. I am not narcissistic. I just sort of have a sixth sense. I am like Haley Joel Osment’s character in The Sixth Sense (1999). However, instead of seeing dead people, I see good movies.
Can’t you just hear me whispering softly? “I see good movies.”
Bruce Willis responds, “In your dreams?”
I shake my head no.
“While you’re awake?”
“Good movies like, in graves? In coffins?”
“Walking around like regular movies. They don’t see each other. They only see what they want to see. They don’t know they’re good.”
Bruce Willis asks, “How often do you see them?”
I whisper, “All the time. They’re everywhere.”
Prisoners is about two little girls who go missing. Keller Dover (Hugh Jackman) is the father of one of the girls. He will stop at nothing to find out who took his daughter and will do whatever is necessary to get her back.
The movie was directed by Denis Villeneuve and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Jake Gyllenhaal, Terrance Howard, Maria Bello, Melissa Leo, Viola Davis, Paul Dano, Wayne Duvall, Len Cariou, David Dastmalchian, and Dylan Minnette.
Prisoners was gripping. It did not take long to pull me in to the disturbingly chilling story. It’s the next day and I’m still thinking about the film.
It should go without saying that it’s not exactly a feel good movie. Two little girls disappear. There is nothing good about that. Because of the subject matter, some aspects of the film are hard to like. However, the film was so well-made that it doesn’t pull any punches, and rightfully so. You have to see the bad in order to appreciate the good.
The movie is brutally violent and gory. There is plenty of language and blood. It captures the eeriness of the twisted plot perfectly.
Jackman plays a broken man who does not hesitate to do whatever is necessary to get his daughter back. His performance was excellent. It might be his best and more realistic role yet. It is Hugh Jackman unplugged like you haven’t seen him before.
Gyllenhaal plays the detective on the case. He is obsessed with his job and has solved every case that he has been assigned to. He is not about to fail now. This movie is equally Gyllenhaal’s movie as much as it is Jackman’s.
The rest of the supporting cast all play their parts well and Leo stands out among them.
The film is just over two and a half hours long, but I was so in to it that I did not notice. Time flies when you’re have fun, or watching a good movie. Prisoners never gets boring. It absorbs you and keeps you guessing until the end.
Jackman, Gyllenhaal, and Leo all gave Oscar worthy performances and the film itself is the best movie that I have seen so far this year.
I rate this movie a 9 on a scale on 1-10.
Buy, rent, or run? Buy.
If you liked Prisoners, then you will probably enjoy:
Mystic River (2003)
Prisoners (2013) (Click on the title for my full review.)
Two little girls go missing. The father (Hugh Jackman) of one of the girls finds and captures the man that he thinks took them. He will stop at nothing to get his little girl back.
The film is written by Denis Villeneuve and directed by Aaron Guzikowski.
Kidnapping is not a new idea for a movie, but this one looks pretty intense. The cast is top-notch and the movie looks like it has potential.
I think that I’ll have to check this one out when it hits theatres.
The film is set to release on 9/20/13.