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Death Wish (2018)

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Dr. Paul Kersey is an experienced trauma surgeon, a man who has spent his life saving lives. After an attack on his family, Paul embarks on his own mission for justice.

Director:

Eli Roth

Writers:

Joe Carnahan (screenplay by), Brian Garfield (from the novel by) | 1 more credit »
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950 ( 38)
4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Bruce Willis ... Paul Kersey
Vincent D'Onofrio ... Frank Kersey
Elisabeth Shue ... Lucy Kersey
Camila Morrone ... Jordan Kersey
Dean Norris ... Detective Kevin Raines
Beau Knapp ... Knox
Kimberly Elise ... Detective Leonore Jackson
Len Cariou ... Ben
Jack Kesy ... The Fish
Ronnie Gene Blevins ... Joe
Kirby Bliss Blanton ... Bethany
Andreas Apergis ... Belligerent Dad
Ian Matthews ... Ponytail
Wendy Crewson ... Dr. Jill Klavens
Warona Setshwaelo Warona Setshwaelo ... Nurse Carla
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Storyline

Dr. Paul Kersey (Bruce Willis) is a surgeon who only sees the aftermath of his city's violence as it's rushed into his ER -until his wife (Elisabeth Shue) and college-age daughter (Camila Morrone) are viciously attacked in their suburban home. With the police overloaded with crimes, Paul, burning for revenge, hunts for his family's assailants to deliver justice. As the anonymous slayings of criminals grabs the media's attention, the city wonders if this deadly avenger is a guardian angel...or a grim reaper. Fury and fate collide in the intense action-thriller Death Wish. Written by MGM

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They came for his family. Now he's coming for them. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong bloody violence, and language throughout | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Canada

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

2 March 2018 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Death Wish See more »

Filming Locations:

Chicago, Illinois, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$13,010,267, 4 March 2018, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$34,017,028
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Mainland China Censored Version)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Surround 7.1

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Eli Roth wanted the film to be a modern, contemporary take on the story and used morning radio DJs Sway in the Morning and Mancow Muller as a Greek chorus to comment on the violence and function as the film's moral compass. Roth wanted the scenes to feel totally authentic, and sent them the situations and let the DJs film and direct themselves and comment how they would naturally as if it was happening. Roth also used viral videos, memes, and the urban gossip site mediatakeout, which director Roth is a fan of. Roth wanted to show the reactions the way they would really happen, making the point that tragic violence becomes a internet meme within hours. See more »

Goofs

Kersey doesn't wear gloves and leaves fingerprints all over. The cops never dust for prints. See more »

Quotes

Joe: Are you that doctor?
Paul Kersey: I am that doctor. And right now, I'm *your* doctor.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film's copyright date in the credits is 2017 rather than 2018. See more »

Alternate Versions

In Singapore, the film was initially passed uncut with an M18 rating; due to stronger instances of violence. However the distributors were unsatisfied with this rating and then opted to re-edit the film in order to secure the more commercially friendly NC-16 rating. See more »


Soundtracks

Addicted to Bad Bitches
Written by Brian Whitaker and Julian Council
Performed by WINKFROMTHEWOOD
Courtesy of Gravelpit Music/MMC
See more »

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User Reviews

 
As generic as it gets
25 May 2018 | by plpregentSee all my reviews

Carrying the same title as the classic 1974 vigilante flick starring Charles Bronson, Eli Roth's latest installment is set in modern-day Chicago, a city plagued with gang violence. Paul Kersey (Bruce Willis), a pacific, non-violent surgeon and family man, sees his life turn upside down when his wife (Elizabeth Shue) and daughter are brutally attacked by a bunch of serial home invading thugs. Feeling frustrated as he witnesses the helplessness of the local police department, who also happens to be flooded with similar cases, Kersey decides to take matters into his own hands, and begins hunting criminals through the streets of Chicago, helping a few people in need on the way, but ultimately tracking (and taking) down the men responsible for the violence inflicted to his family.

I think it's safe to say that, when it comes to vigilante flicks, it's only fair to expect a pretty typical storyline along those lines. What usually makes the difference is how the main character evolves throughout, how nasty the main villain is, how colourful the set of secondary characters is, and how creative the kills get. Unfortunately, Eli Roth's Death Wish does not pack enough surprises anywhere to make the film memorable in any way.

Having for protagonist a surgeon working in an emergency room is actually the best idea within this average-at-best script. It brings perhaps the most interesting moments in the entire film. Besides that, Kersey's psychological evolution throughout is beyond clichéd, both in terms of writing and delivery, as it's delivered mostly through a classic montage of shooting range practice, glimpses of appointments with a therapist, radio hosts debating whether Kersey is a hero or a criminal, and sequences of street shootings. Then it's all rinse and repeat. While Bruce Willis manages to build a likeable character in the first few scenes, this editing pattern quickly takes over and carries the audience from one killing sequence to the next, thereby earmarking character development as a secondary distraction.

Support characters are a complete shame, as they are generic and lack any depth whatsoever, despite being played by a great cast of actors (Elizabeth Shue, Dean Norris and Vincent D'Onofrio). You barely ever get to know any of the villains, which lack any personality whatsoever and always briefly appear on screen before getting brutally killed. Extremely basic characters.

Some of the kills are pretty graphic, but it's nothing we have not seen before. Considering how the entire film appears to gravitate around this particular aspect, it's a bit of a shame that they could not even come up with something original or striking, gritty violence.

Eli Roth's direction is pretty average. The intro sequence was fun to watch, as it was reminiscent of B series action flicks from the 70s, but as the film went on, montage after montage, the story and action unfold in quite a bland manner, without ever generating much excitement.

There is also a somewhat tangible attempt at bringing up the classic ambiguous questions stemming from individuals making their own justice, which ends up being yet another secondary, shallow distraction that never amounts to anything.

With all that being said, I sat through the whole film wondering what would happen next, which I suppose indicates that Death Wish still packs some entertainment value and is somewhat compelling. However, my appreciation for this type of story might have been what got me to the end credits. There are two or three one liners that managed to put a smile on my face, and few wince-inducing moments that'll help anyone interested in this type of film cruise to the end credits. Just don't expect to be surprised in any way.

There are many other films with the exact same storyline that are much worthier watches.


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