Film: Punisher War Zone (2008) BUY IT
The Principals: Ray Stevenson. Dominic West. Julie Benz. Wayne Knight. Doug Hutchison. Lexi Alexander (who
The Premise: Frank Castle lost his family and as a result kills crooks all the time, even on Christmas.
The license of a Punisher movie is that you can spend almost the entire running time of the film showing a grumpy and very proficient killer enjoying the savage murder of literally dozens of crime-seeking men and women. His origin is that he’s pissed. The character arc is that he changes his shirt. It’s a beautiful thing and the other great thing about the license of a Punisher movie is that it is often given a little budget to play with. Typically for a plot and setup this threadbare you have to accept the grade D filmmakers and talent it warrants. Not here. Though they aren’t expensive films, Punisher flicks get at least a handful of respectable people involved.
Punisher War Zone is the best Punisher movie. By far. While that’s not some big statement, as far as gory and batshit revenge flicks go, this one’s up there.
Why is this film great? May I present Exhibit A in the defense:
Is It Good: Yes! Did you just fucking see the gentleman take out a Parkour asshole with a rocket launcher?
Is It Worth A Look: Unless you don’t like intentionally brain dead and totally loose and fun violent flicks you MUST see it. Lexi Alexander has delivered a lustily bloody tone poem of mayhem. It’s a slaughterhouse flattened and projected at 35mm. What isn’t to love?
Ray Stevenson is a quiet mass of a man who delivers his lines just fine and he actually feels like a man capable of chunking and smiting the ungood. Dominic West chews scenery like Bobby Flay was the production designer and Doug Hutchison does exactly the same thing Doug Hutchison ever does.
It is madness! It is glory!
Why is this film great? May I present Exhibit B in the defense:
People die painfully all over the place.
Random Anecdotes: Wayne Knight’s elderly mom is infirm and catatonic. For all intents and purposes, she is a piece of pungent lady-shaped furniture. Dominic West’s compassion involves a shotgun to her face. Art.