Death Wish (1972)

We find the movie’s pro-vigilantism message uncool, but have to respect how well the movie convinces us that bleeding-heart liberal Paul Kersey (Charles Bronson) could turn into a one-man judge, jury and executioner.

The deck is stacked and the portrayal of crime is cartoonish, but somehow director Michael Winner and screenwriter Wendall Mayes – working very loosely from Brian Garfield’s novel — get us to root for Bronson.

We like the 2018 Eli Roth remake more, maybe because Bruce Willis is so likable and the film feels a little looser and less heavy-handed, while retaining the grimy thrills of the original.

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