It's a hard crime story about a Philadelphia shop owner who has enough of the criminals' violences and ravages. He organizes a patrol of civil people. It all starts to go wrong because his ... See full summary »
It's a hard crime story about a Philadelphia shop owner who has enough of the criminals' violences and ravages. He organizes a patrol of civil people. It all starts to go wrong because his team's actions are taken as racial discrimination ... Written by
Kornel Osvart <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Thieves, Pimps, Prostitutes, Muggers and Drug Dealers beware. John D'Angelo's out to make his neighbourhood safe. He's declaring his own personal war on crime and he doesn't want your kind around here any more.
Why this has never been released on DVD I'll never know, especially when so much grade-z rubbish has been given the lavish 'Special Edition' treatment. This is, quite simply, one of the finest 'revenge' genre films made and far more intelligent than most of it's type. I mean, just take a look at the cast: Tom Skerrit, Michael Sarrazin. These a class actors.
What makes Death Vengeance so strong are the well developed characters. You identify with them more than anything. Paul Kersey was someone who appealed to the lowest common denominator, those who liked to cheer violent characters responding in a totally over the top fashion. John D'Angelo seemed to be grounded more in reality, reacting in a way we can understand. While not always sympathetic, Skerrit's performance made him believable.
The film was marketed in a fairly deceptive way. This is more than just another shoot-em-up no-brainer and deserves to be recognised as such. Director Lewis Teague could have taken the easy option, thrown in lots of action set-pieces and had a sky-high bodycount. Instead, he decided to engage our brains instead of our base instincts. He, and the film need to be recognised for this. Shame this doesn't happen more often. See it and you will find an underrated and surprisingly thought provoking film.
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