We are very pleased to now have a two screen theater here in Morris — it means that first-run movies don’t clog up the sole screen for weeks and weeks, so we’ll get a more regular roll-over of movies. Most importantly, it means that that horrible Mission Impossible crap has already been shunted off to the mini-theater, and we get a brand new shiny horrible piece of crap already.
This week, we get The Equalizer 2. I have fond memories of the old TV series from the late 1980s, in which Robert McCall, played by Edward Woodward with a bit of class, would take on the problems that the police wouldn’t — and there’d be some twisty little plot where he’d use his vast sums of money, his network of talented characters, his mysterious background as a spy, and a clever scheme to cunningly give the bad guys their comeuppance. My wife was particularly fond of the show, probably because the protagonist was a handsome distinguished older gentleman with a nice English accent.
This movie is a little different.
In this one, Robert McCall, played by Denzel Washington, uses his mysterious background as a spy to track down the bad guys and brutally, bloodily murder them to death with his bare hands, or sometimes a wicked little knife. The movie opens with an irrelevant side plot in Turkey, in which McCall slaughters four big bruisers in a train car, and then we go off to Belgium, where a woman is being murdered in front of her husband, and then her husband’s brains getting blown out, and it kind of takes off from there — bones are broken, faces are punched, women are brutalized (but they fight back ferociously…I don’t think that makes it OK), bombs go off, a guy gets shot in the face with a harpoon gun, another guy gets his guts blown out with a cleverly made bomb in a bakery, one more guy gets slashed multiple times and bleeds to death slowly, and another one gets a similar slashing, but he gets off easy because he then falls from a great height and goes splat on some rocks. Lots of blood. Lots of nasty sound effects. Not quite what I expected. The talented Melissa Leo is totally wasted in her role, but I was surprised to see the ancient Orson Bean is still alive and played a significant part in the movie. He wasn’t any good at it, but it was impressive that someone who was in TV and the movies in the 1950s is still kicking.
Fortunately, I’d invited my wife to join me, but she begged off because she had better things to do. I don’t think she would have liked it at all.
Oh, hey, I think I had better things to do, too. I don’t know what, but just about anything would do. I could have eaten spiders for two hours, I’d probably feel less queasy.