“Death Wish” tells the story of New York City architect Paul Kersey, who becomes a one-man vigilante squad after his wife is senselessly slain by street thugs. In self-defense, the vengeful man commences killing muggers on the mean streets after dark.
In the “Death Wish II” sequel film, Kersey once again goes vigilante force as he tries to track down the vile vermin who murdered his daughter and housekeeper. This time, the relentless hunt for evil finds Kersey stalking his prey deep in the dark recesses of Los Angeles.
“Death Wish” (1974) & “Death Wish II” (1982)……at long last!
Films that Forever Matter Series
by John Smistad
‘Twas like a wish come true for yours truly.
Well, kinna, sorta HALFWAY true anyway.
We were just hangin’ out in the house b.s.’n as teenage boys do. Sports. Girls. School. Girls. Parents. Girls.
Girls. Girls. Girls. Gir-…
So eventually my good buddy Steve informs me he’d just seen the new movie “Death Wish” starring quintessential bad ass Charles Bronson at the local theater. He tells me about the brutal home invasion and gang rape scene. I know right then this flick will not be on my must-see agenda.
Let’s flash-forward “a few” years to just a few years ago.
Don’t we all have those things we’re gonna get around to? Learning the banjo. Running a 5k. Sleeping under the stars. Dancing like nobody’s watching.
For me one of those things on my “one of these days” list was finally seeing the visceral vigilante vehicles “Death Wish” and “Death Wish II”. Struck by an impulse one evening, I decided what the hell? I’m gonna watch “Death Wish” dammit. And then I’m gonna watch flippin’ “Death Wish 2” right straight after that, buddy.
Well, would you look at me, huh? All growed-up and stuff and takin’ the leap at last!
Having seen both flicks now,
I can proclaim without reservation that the 1974 original is way-hay-hay better than the largely unnecessary follow-up eight years later.
Bronson’s character of Paul Kersey projects a calm exterior that belies a furious core. Once fully detonated, he morphs into a man bent on kicking scumbag ass and not giving one crap about taking their sorry names. These two films represent perhaps the ultimate experience in an audience living vicariously through a tortured soul. One bent on avenging a savagely brutal attack upon those he loves.
The original “Death Wish” stands as a true classic.
If you haven’t already, see it.
It’ll make you wish, as I do, that the filmmakers would have given us this cinematic touchstone and been quite content to live with that.