Who cares, the resulting deaths are cool. Washington's Robert McCall is not self-destructive or addicted. When the setup is literally 5 seconds earlier, we all see it coming. One such scene is a powerful dinner table battering-of-wits, a taut reimagining of that iconic scene in Heat 1995. The one female lead is developed nicely especially compared to every other innocent victim who may as well have stepped out of Little House On The Prairie. Quietly contained, but with ever-building intensity, Washington turns in another stellar performance. Just turn off your brain and enjoy the tension building.
Nope, just lay out that one line setup, then walk on in. The excellent performances by the cast are also what raise this movie well above your ordinary action movie. You'll have forgotten it by the time you leave the parking lot. The story is old as dirt. But there's more to Denzel, isn't there? You've seen this movie 500 times, I'm sure.
His direction of the drama and the action blend seamlessly, drawing us into the complexity of this character-driven piece. Robert McCall keeps to himself, content to live his ordinary life; he is every man's man. Heck, who needs improbable superheroes when you have an average Joe with extraordinary capabilities and all without hiding behind a mask or costume? Oh yeah, and Denzel knows everything. He just wants what's right. How does Denzel have time to set up his trap, rig wires, etc, without anyone seeing this work being done? While Denzel's fight scenes were a lot of super-close blurry shots, the few scenes where the Bad Guy establishes his badness were rather good, very tense, very violent and cringe-worthy. Every scene in his workplace which is visited repeatedly throughout the movie includes no less than 2 background guys smiling giddily when Denzel arrives to work, and laughing loud at every word Denzel speaks.
Both Denzel Washington and Chloe Grace Moretz give stellar performances and display perfect chemistry as two friends stuck in a world of crime and violence. Example of bad writing: Two thugs walking up to a door. But this time, you'll be rooting for the good guy, and I, a fifty years young woman, loved every minute of it! Using a Mark Twain quote about people who find their true purpose late in life, Washington plays Robert McCall, a loner and tragic widower with a mysterious past. Antoine Fuqua, the directer who brought us Training Day, which earned Denzel his Best Actor Oscar, helms this movie with a steady hand. This scene takes place in a diner they frequent in Boston, and it's the first of two powerful moments in the film.
Most importantly, McCall is not McClane! Although compelled to use the N-word, I'll just say Ma man Denzel. There's a tightly restrained compassion in McCall's eyes, fighting a father-figure compulsion to do what he must, while Alina's is a muted plea for deliverance. He's ecstatic just to be alive. However, the violence and bloodshed in this movie are deserving of it's R- rating, and create this film's authentic feel. We the viewers will just deal with it. How does Denzel know when the bad guys will appear at a time and place, so he can intercept them in the night? To that effect, the best scenes in the film are when Teddy and McCall are face-to-face and denting each other's armour with nothing but well written dialogues.
While humour and drama throw some light on Boston's mob controlled dirty cops, McCall's relationships with his colleagues, and even a short segment that suggests his origins as a trained killer, The Equalizer really shines with Fuqua's deft handling of action scenes. Reunited after their collaboration in Training Day, Washington received his first Academy Award in a leading role and director Antoine Fuqua are back in this simple yet deadly effective action film. He seems to know how to handle any situation and any number of attackers - just because. Everyone loves being near him. .
The bad guy was awesome. More moves than Shakira and deadlier than Seal Team Six. Give us the setup in a different location, maybe? The wait is made so much worse when the viewer knows exactly what's coming. But ultimately, we all know Denzel will kick ass, so it's all just a waiting game. He is not a wise-cracking cop in the wrong place at the wrong time, but rather a quiet and complex character, whose sense of justice is awakened when a young girl is brutally beaten. Don't know, doesn't matter, I guess.
Give him all the guns. But, his steady moral compass, and strong sense of justice lead him back into the fray. No reason; he's just awesome. Chloe Grace Moretz, as the teenage prostitute, is a force. This character is not infallible, and he is not looking for trouble. This movie version of The Equalizer is more reminiscent of Matt Damon's Jason Bourne, and it is this that sets this movie above your typical action flick.
Armed with hidden skills that allow him to serve vengeance against anyone who would brutalize the helpless, McCall comes out of his self-imposed retirement and finds his desire for justice reawakened. How does Denzel sneak into a closet-sized room without the occupant noticing? But topping it off is Washington in a vigilante role that is the best we've seen in years. He appears magically inside buildings and rooms where one shouldn't be able to sneak in. But don't expect to take this movie with you. It gets a bit hokey towards the end, with McCall using all manner of booby traps to slice, dice and blow up Teddy's dumber-by-the-minute henchmen. This movie is very character-driven, and Denzel Washington, who plays protagonist Robert McCall, gives another stellar performance. Having previously scripted The Expendables 2, Richard Wenk's story here is nothing new when considering McCall's proverbial 'set of skills', a comparison if you must, to certain characters Liam Neeson has played.