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In the hit 1980s TV show, British actor Edward Woodward played Robert McCall, the retired agent-turned-good Samaritan who equalised the odds for ordinary citizens bothered by bad guys. In director Antoine Fuqua's slick reboot, it's his
star Denzel Washington who is guardian angel to the meek and menaced. Or is he? Washington initially appears to be just an ordinary blue collar stiff earning a crust at a DIY centre. However, when he befriends a young hooker (Chloë Grace Moretz) in thrall to a fearsome Russian syndicate, his true nature emerges and a destructive war of attrition ensues. Memories of Washington's mentally mangled avenger in
Man on Fire
(2004) should be dispelled; his McCall is ultra-resourceful, lethally efficient and pretty much indestructible (like Liam Neeson in the
films) as he uses his "particular set of skills" to confront Marton Csokas's icy baddie. McCall's day job is a plus, too, as barbed wire, power drills and rivet guns become quite handy when pursued by traditionally tooled-up mercenaries. Of course it's ludicrous, but this is
, and Washington has the stellar charisma and mobility (unlike the portlier Woodward) to keep total disbelief at bay.
Premiere. A retired secret agent applies his talents to the task of helping victims of injustice. When he witnesses a prostitute being beaten up by a pimp, he kills the man, an act that draws him into a battle to the death with a Russian crime syndicate. Action thriller based on the 1980s TV series, starring Denzel Washington and Chloe Grace Moretz.
Cast & Crew
Chloë Grace Moretz
DVD and Blu-ray
26 Sep 2014
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