The Punisher

Joan: "Where are you going?"
Frank: "I have work to do. Read your newspaper everyday and you'll understand."
Joan: "Which section?"
Frank: "Obituaties."

release year: 2004
genre: action
viewing setting: home DVD, 12/4/16 and 4/11/14 and 6/14/12 and theater, 4/25/04

synopsis: After his entire family is killed, ex-soldier Frank Castle wages a one-man war on those responsible.

impressions: Somehow, it wasn't everything I hoped it would be; this is probably due to excessive non-action sequences. It's funny, too, because those only got put in to satisfy people who can't handle pure action, and yet those people will still harp on this movie. Bottom line: for revenge action, this is well worth seeing. I guess my only gripe is that it took him a little too long to eliminate key bad guys - in Death Wish 3, Charles Bronson took out all of the seconds-in-command within a five-minute span.

things to watch for: The middle of the dinner party, when Frank goes back to his room for a break.

something this movie has that no other movie has: A non-speaking, 7-foot-tall mountain of a hitman.

acting: Thomas Jane does a great job as an emotionally-distraught but still functional killing machine. John Travolta plays it serious, rather than hamming it up like usual, as the head bad guy. The three neighbors in Frank's building are quirky but they add something, even if it's a lull in the action. It should be noted that these characters, as well as the Russian, were taken from Garth Ennis' run on the Punisher comic book.

final word: Could have had more action and less drama, but all in all it's a worthy film.

back to the main review page