Punisher: War Zone is not as bloody as Kill Bill, but this is not for lack of trying on the writer's and director's part. This may well be the most violent movie any US studio has released in a good while.

This is not a bad thing.

They got to the heart of the character in a way that neither of the two previous movies managed to, and Frank Castle's struggle between his role as avenging angel of judgment and his attempts to hold onto some measure of humanity was brilliantly played by the actor playing him (can't remember his name, but he looks like he stepped off the pages of the comic). There are three other characters I recognized from the comics, all of whom had the look and mannerisms almost as close to their drawn counterparts as the main character: Detective Soap, the NYPD officer in charge of the Punisher Task Force because nobody else wanted the job; Jigsaw, the gangster whose face Frank messed up so badly that all the doctors could do was stitch his face into puzzle patterns like unto his namesake; and Microchip, the computer operator who keeps Frank supplied with guns and other tools needed for his war on crime. Wayne Knight plays Micro really well, btw - after the title role, his is the best performance of the lot.

I'll leave the plot unspoiled. If you like the comics, you know what kind of story you're in for. If you aren't familiar with the Punisher, but like action movies, I would recommend giving this bastard child of Sam Peckinpah and John Woo (and I say this in a good way) a look.



October 2016

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