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Thursday, Oct 17, 2019

A pointless remake: Death Wish review by Rashid Irani

The original offered a layered take on vigilante justice. This remake offers just lip service and is, overall, not even sporadically interesting.

movie-reviews Updated: Mar 02, 2018 17:31 IST
Rashid Irani
Rashid Irani
Hindustan Times
Bruce Willis plays the grief-stricken surgeon seeking vengeance against the criminals who brutalised his family.
Bruce Willis plays the grief-stricken surgeon seeking vengeance against the criminals who brutalised his family.
         
Death Wish
  • Direction: Eli Roth
  • Actors: Bruce Willis, Elisabeth Shue
  • Rating: *

The original Death Wish became a cause célèbre for its take on vigilante justice, in 1974.

This time around, Die Hard action icon Bruce Willis takes on the role of the grief-stricken surgeon seeking vengeance against the criminals who brutalised his family in their suburban Chicago home.

But rather than acting as social commentary, the remake merely exploits the overarching theme of crime and punishment to unleash more violence and death.

Elisabeth Shue is  wasted in the role of Willis’s murdered wife
Elisabeth Shue is wasted in the role of Willis’s murdered wife

The script offers little by way of character development, preferring instead to pay lip service to concerns about gun culture and the validity of ‘purposeful’ vigilantism.

Age hasn’t exactly treated Bruce Willis well but he manages to pull off the down-and-dirty stuff with conviction. Old-timer Elisabeth Shue is wasted in the role of his murdered wife.

Unlike the original, a cult classic, the new millennium Death Wish is not even sporadically interesting.

First Published: Mar 02, 2018 17:31 IST

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