A lone man, recently released from prison, seeks out the people from his past who he believes betrayed him. While he forces each to atone for their sins, he must also face what meting out vengeance will do to his immortal soul. Meanwhile, he's not the only one looking to settle old scores. Hired by the man responsible for the events which lead him to prison, an eccentric contract killer follows his every move. Scenes of them crossing paths, sometimes violently, are interspersed with the assassin's self-realizations of how to deal with struggles within his own life. As if old enemies & hired guns aren't enough, a young female detective begrudgingly works alongside a veteran investigator looking to simply survive his last two weeks on the force before retirement, as they seek out the brazen ex-con who has been blazing a path of gasoline-powered destruction in his vintage Chevelle. Written by
George Tillman Jr., who primarily directs dramas, made this film as an homage to action films from the 1970s. Tillman Jr. had no prior experience in directing action films. See more »
At the beginning of the movie, as Driver is running away from prison to retrieve his vehicle, you can see police vehicles blocking the road to allow for uninterrupted filming in the background. See more »
I was surprised by this somewhat. I expected a brainless revenge thriller. What I got was a nicely crafted caper, a throwback, a homage, to several genre films.
The storytelling was straight to the point, almost linear. A vengeful juggernaut-The Rock-gets out of jail and seeks revenge for his murdered brother. He's as focused as a laser missile. An eclectic cast of characters are in his way. A strung-out cop out for redemption (Billy Bob Thornton), a neurotic hit-man and various unsavory people.
I thought this was nice nod to 70s style vengeance driven movies and somewhat reminiscent of Richard Stark/Donald Westlake's PARKER character (seen, in its most recent incarnation in PAYBACK, starring MEL Gibson: one man seeking revenge against fellow criminals). A man focused on his mission. The Rock is a cold-blood murder machine. Nothing heroic or even sympathetic about this guy, which makes him fascinating to watch as he runs down his list.
This movie doesn't reinvent the wheel, but it is a nice cure for the sugar coated holiday releases flooding our cinemas. A nice balance of violence, solid acting and some great music provided by THE HEAVY.
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