Friday, 21 November 2014

Review : The Equalizer

The Equalizer : A man believes he has put his mysterious past behind him and has dedicated himself to beginning a new, quiet life. But when he meets a young girl under the control of ultra-violent Russian gangsters, he can't stand by and do nothing - he has to help her.

So Denzel Washington is a man with a mysterious past, who works in a DIY store, and resorts back to his methods of violence and killing in aid of helping a young girl who is under control of Russian gangsters. I love a heavy action movie, and Denzel Washington can certainly deliver, with quick reactions, expecting the unexpected and being smarter than his opponant in moments of graphic fight scenes.

We know from the start that Washington is a good guy. He’s a soulful loner who works in a DIY store, very easy and nothing special about that at all. What I like about Denzel Washington's character is that he’s surprisingly meticulous. He has a habit of folding a tea bag very precisely in a serviette, taking it down to his local diner at night, and getting a mug of hot water, while whatever he’s reading is placed exactly perpendicular to the table edge. He also likes to use a stopwatch in any context where violence looms, testing his reflexes to the decimal point.

It's only when he grows concern for an abused teenage prostitute, that everything in his plans for a new life stop abrubtly, which in turn leads him to the den of her snarling pimps, and he gets his methodical vigilante on for the first time, then it is at that moment, the communication of the pitch becomes clear, to the audience, because we get to understand what he's been trying very hard to hide from, which adds to our understanding of him as character.

The bad guys, too, are easy to pick out from the crowd. They’re casting-central Russian mafia. They have many disreputable tattoos, and they’re headed up by a charasmatic leader 'Kiwi-Hungarian'. Rarely caught being subtle, Csokas goes in for the kind of drawling, aesthete’s villainy that suggests what Dale Winton might have done with the role of Hannibal Lecter. The role’s crying out for a name star, just to allow the oppertunity to create a more balanced antagonism to matchWashington, who generally looks as if he could get supporting players fired with a snap of his fingers.

The Equalizer is a film which is lacking much of an intelligible plot. What we get is a “tough hombre right vs wrong in way of pushing the boundaries of a 15 rating”. As such, you’d think it should of been hustling its way to the showdown as swiftly as possible.

Denzel Washington's character has everything he needs, anyway: he's all stacked up in his chosen workplace, specifically the deadly power tools aisle and the deadly gardening one. Betide the impetuous goons expecting to besiege him there with mere bullets. Tree pruners, nail guns and barbed wire stop them hideously in their tracks.

To sum things up The Equalizer is wildly excessive, hypnotically scored, and more than a little hilarious. It’s just a hell of a long time coming, for anyone to not watch Denzel Washington brood and fold napkins for 90 minutes. 7/10

NEXT : Batman, The Movie

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