Death Wish


Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

Death Wish
"The film is not dedicated to the NRA although it should have been."

What is it they say about being careful what you wish for? Death? Maybe that's a bit harsh. Not the gurgle and the gasp exactly, but don't!

Remakes rarely improve on originals. Here we have Michael Winner (of all people) giving Eli Roth a lesson in how to make a vigilante movie and the late Charles Bronson topping Die Hard veteran Bruce Willis in charismatic intensity.

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Doc Paul Kersey (Willis) is a reputable surgeon whose wife (the delectable Elisabeth Shue) is murdered in their home and whose daughter Jordan's (equally delectable Camila Morrone) life hangs in the balance. What can he do? Take time off at Grieve Central, or do something about it? Surely that's the cops' job. Yes, but...

The doc decides that the detective on the case (Breaking Bad's very own Dean Norris) has been following dead end leads and filing them in a drawer marked UNSOLVED/UNSOLVABLE. He takes matters into his own hands, despite ignorance of the underworld and limited firearm experience.

The film is not dedicated to the NRA although it should have been. Don J T, Godfather of the Disunited States, will love it because America was made great by killing natives, enslaving immigrants and shooting "bad hombres" when they stepped inside your property.

The doc goes after the guys who done it. Much violence and blood ensues. Compared to Keanu Reeves in the John Wick shockers Willis is a pussy. Also, he's looking older than Jane Fonda and slower on his feet than Clint. The make-up team have smoothed out the cracks, but it's not enough. Bronson would never have bothered. Craggy was king is his book.

Action pictures don't need high gloss exteriors. They need energy and pace and a screenplay that rocks. Winner can lie peaceful. This newbie feeds off cliche and cannon fodder.

Reviewed on: 05 Apr 2018
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Death Wish packshot
Reputable surgeon turns vigilante to avenge the death of his wife.
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Director: Eli Roth

Writer: Joe Carnahan, based on the novel by Brian Garfield and the 1974 screenplay by Wendell Mayes

Starring: Bruce Willis, Elisabeth Shue, Vincent D'Onofrio, Camila Morrone, Dean Norris, Beau Knapp, Kimberly Elise, Len Cariou, Jack Kesy, Ronnie Gene Blevins

Year: 2018

Runtime: 107 minutes

BBFC: 15 - Age Restricted

Country: US


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John Wick