Want the understatement of the still-young year? Movie critics aren’t pleased with Bruce Willis’ “Death Wish” remake.
The film currently sits at 12 percent “Rotten” at RottenTomatoes.com, and it might sink from there.
The movie isn’t flawless by any stretch. That’s not why most critics are savaging it. The remake offers a cogent rationale for private gun ownership, and that simply cannot be explored on screen without a fight.
Willis takes Charles Bronson’s place for the remake of the 1974 film which spawned four sequels. See for yourself if the movie lives up to the franchise’s legacy. Or, chuckle along at these hyperbolic reactions to the film.
NPR, paid for by the American people, delivers a sanctimonious screed disguised as a review. And, of course, the critic plays the White Card:
But maybe, just maybe, there’s a handful of you who belong to neither faction. Perhaps you’re idly wondering how this remake of a 1974 vigilante-justice Charles Bronson flick engages with its subject, and interrogates the original film’s assumptions and, perhaps, recontextualizes its central ethos of “we white straight men are under attack and thus are so completely justified in slaughtering — ah, defending ourselves — with extreme (and literal) prejudice”?
For some context… Willis’ antihero saves the life of a young black female, calls a fellow black surgeon his friend and kills thugs who represent a number of ethnic backgrounds, from white to black to Latino.
IndieWire’s review must be read in toto to be believed. For now, enjoy this sample:
“Death Wish” is such a masturbatory fantasy for modern conservatives because it suggests that every do-gooder Democrat is really just a Republican waiting to happen.
Film Festival Today must attack the Constitution along with the film itself.
To anyone who fears that, yes, the liberals are coming for your guns, this is the movie for you, offering up the ideal fantasy of why they should leave you and the 2nd Amendment alone.
The movie shrewdly packages the array of villains as hailing from a number of ethnic backgrounds. The RogerEbert.com critic sees right through that with his magic critic glasses!
Many of the bad guys here are white, but their creepy otherness codes them as something else.
The same critic also complains the film doesn’t feature enough women, even though the attack on Willis’ family is all about the women he adores and one of the two police officers investigating the signature crime is a black female. And then there’s the hero’s female psychiatrist and the injured daughter’s dutiful friend…
Not good enough!
Much of the dialogue concerns the necessity of a man protecting “his” women, but, as in the original Bronson films, this fictional world cannot abide too many women, because their presence in the story would complicate the posturing and feuding.
A critic for Den of Geek hits the usual targets (Trump! NRA!) but also manages to critique… wait for it… the audience!
And make no mistake, people will root for him: the bloodlust in the audience at the screening last night was palpable and disturbing.
Just remember, film critics are impartial and lean neither to the left or the right. Giggle snort.