Death Wish 3

"It’s like killing have to kill ‘em all, otherwise what’s the use?" - Paul Kersey

release year: 1985
genre: drama/action
viewing setting: home Bluray 10/10/19 and home DVD, 2/18/17 and 10/30/09 and 5/17/06 and 2/8/04

synopsis: Paul Kersey's back in New York, and it doesn't take long for him to start blowing away criminals.

impressions: Bronson has completed the transformation in this movie: now he's ruthless and has no second thoughts about what must be done. He doesn't second-guess himself, hesitate, or worry about details or what some woman or doctor thinks. He has become a bulletproof-vest-wearing, big-game-gun-firing killing machine who can charge headlong into a gunfight without fear or injury, or knock out a kid one-third his age with a single powerful punch. Fortunately, there is an entire city block full of timid old people who want and need his help. By the end, many of them (and others who are tired of the gangs) emerge from their mouse-holes with various weapons and take the fight to the punks. As for Bronson, among the weapons he uses to ply his trade this time: fists, pistol, big hunting pistol, tire iron, switchblade, gigantic machine gun, anti-tank rocket. He's also handy with traps, as he uses the old nailed-board-under-window and spring-loaded-board tricks; particularly telling is the finding of the latter, sprung and with two bloody teeth imbedded in it. Ouch. All in all, it's good fun. Call me weird, but I enjoy watching Charles Bronson explain to the old folks how his new gun fires bullets designed to bring down large wild animals.

things to watch for: At 31:00, after a murder, a gang runs around in a frenzy, brandishing knives, guns, tire irons, bats...except for this one poor clown who somehow got armed with a toilet plunger and waves it around like it's a valid weapon.

OVERALL death toll: 69+ (it gets hard to tell when machine guns, grenades, and rockets are involved)
innocent death toll: 11
non-Bronson death toll: 17 (6 by Ed Lauter after they team up at the 1:22 mark.)
Bronson death toll: 41+ (26 with small-caliber guns, 15+ with heavy guns or the rocket)
death rate of those who sparked Bronson's rampage: 100% (3/3)

early appearance alert #1: Alex Winter! Before he was Bill (from Bill and Ted) he was a leering punk who beat up old people and tried to shoot Charles Bronson. Trivia: Ted (Keanu Reeves) _also_ had an early appearance as a bad guy in a Charles Bronson movie, Act of Vengeance.

early appearance alert #2: Ricco Ross! Before he was Frost, tough Colonial Marine who got to hold all the ammo in Aliens, he was "the Cuban", a heroin-smoking gang member who was afraid of needles.

early appearance alert #3: Marina Sirtis! Before she was Counselor Troi in the year 2364, she was a victim of gang violence here. (I bet she wishes she could forget this role.)

acting: Bronson is stoic and calm as he does what no one else will (or can) do. Ed Lauter turns in a pretty good role as the chief of police who teams up with Bronson. Martin Balsam is good as an old vet who helps out.

someone else's great review: AOBG's entertaining review of Death Wish 3

final word: This movie takes the series and vigilante justice in a whole new direction.

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