Porter is bad, but his neighbours are worse. Street-wise and tough, an ex-marine, he is betrayed by a one-time partner, and shot in the back by his junkie wife. He survives and returns, looking to recover his share from the robbery of an Asian crime gang. The money has passed into the hands of "the Outfit", a slick gangster organisation that runs the city. He has to make his way through a world populated by heroin dealers, prostitutes, sado-masochists, gunmen and crooked cops, a place where torture is a way of life. His only friend is a former employer, a prostitute, and her loyalty is in question, given she now works for the Outfit. He makes good early progress, but then falls into the hands of Fairfax, the crime boss. Written by
Remake of Point Blank (1967) with Lee Marvin based on the book "The Hunter", one of Donald E. Westlake's "Parker" novels. The book was actually renamed Point Blank for some printings. See more »
When Val meets Stegman at Varrick's, Stegman is shown sipping his beer but never really takes a drink. See more »
GSW: that's what the hospitals call it: gunshot wound. Doctor has to report it to the police. That makes it hard for guys in my line to get what I call, quality health care.
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Payback, while admittedly one of the more violent movies out this year, was definitely an entertaining flick.
Like the promo catch phrase says, this time you'll root for the bad guy. If Gibson's character has any redeeming qualities, they are on a very short list. Porter (Gibson) is violent, at times even cruel and the other characters aren't much better; some are worse. Every character is from the wrong side of the tracks, even the cops are on the take and there are no punches pulled. The only character you can really feel is a "good guy" is Rose, the stereotypical Callgirl with a heart of gold (although it's maybe only 10 karat, not a real 24 karat heart).
Nevertheless, you will root for Porter. Frankly, I don't think anyone else could have pulled off this role and still kept the support of the audience like Gibson did, but then he generally always plays the good guy with a twist. This time, the twist is a little more savage than usual.
All in all, if you enjoy the occasional violent romp on the big screen and you're a fan of Mel Gibson; Payback is worth seeing.
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