Sunday, September 13, 2015

The Equalizer (2014)

I have this vague memory of the 1980s.  There were a lot of television shows I had only heard of, mostly because I had to be in bed before they came on.  In 1985, when I was just 9 years old, a show called the Equalizer came on.  It starred Edward Woodward and Robert McCall.  If you were in a bad situation and needed help, McCall would be that help.

In 2014, Denzel Washington took on the role of Robert McCall.  The new McCall was black ops, but is now working at Home Mart.  It doesn’t appear that anyone knows of his past and he’s happy to keep it that way.  He made a promise to his dead wife not to get back into any of that.  Things change when a young female acquaintance of his, Alina, is beaten by her pimp.  He tries to buy out her contract to no avail, leading McCall to take down her pimp and several of his associates.

This might not have otherwise been a problem except that her pimp was affiliated with the Russian mob.  Apparently, they don’t take kindly to their guys being killed.  So, they send in an enforcer to take care of McCall.  This is what takes up the bulk of the movie.  It’s mostly McCall helping Alina get a better life.  There are some side stories to show what kind of man McCall is.  (He helps a coworker pass his security-guard certification, for instance.)

McCall is very calm.  Probably due to his training, he’s capable of taking out the bad guys and he knows it.  He can use what’s available to build disarm or disable his opponents.  There’s a little bit of MacGuyver in him.  He’s basically a man that wants to be left alone.  He really doesn’t want to be drawn back into that world, but realizes that he has to what no one else will.

This is where it would be nice if Netflix had the TV series streaming.  I’d like to see the TV series to compare to the movie.  (I know…they have to pay for the streaming rights.  It’s my problem that I don’t want to wait for the DVDs.)  I’m not really sure how much is the same and how much is different.  I’ve sen Edward Woodward in posters for the TV show holding a gun, but I don’t know how much of the show relied on violence.  The TV series came out 30 years ago, which means that times have changed.  Many of the issues might be similar, but the faces and methods change.

It looks like there may be a sequel, but IMDb doesn’t have any details listed other than it would be Denzel Washington’s first sequel.   I’d definitely like to see it if it does get made.  I might even get around to watching the series.

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