Really, last year’s Punisher: Warzone has it all. What the hell was so difficult to get it right before? This is straight from the picture book – actually, in the very meaning, because the script is very obviously based on an actual Punisher mini series. My heart opened like a flower in the first spring sun when I watched this wonderful movie! Yes, you can say I’m in love! *throws bullets and flowers*
First of all, the script is b e a u t i f u l and perfectly how a Punisher script has to be. No wasting time with sentimental flashbacks, just point out the essential keywords “park, picnic, mafia execution, family dead – Punisher”, but give it 10 minutes through the entire movie, and not the first 45 minutes. Authentic straight from the book characters – gangs, mafiosi of all nations, drug freaks, psychos; the obsessed cop, Frank Castle’s sidekicks…
Then we have the cast. PICTURE PERFECT! After Thomas Jane did a hell of a job to play the role of Frank Castle down to a pretty boy with a trendy shirt, Ray Stevenson is my personal new hero; I love this man, I truly do. Did I ever say I want Bruce Willis, and no other, as Frank Castle? I can’t remember that. NO. THIS is my Punisher, the way he has to be, look, act, talk – and dress. HE HAS NO PUNISHER SHIRT! Not for a single moment does he wear it, and still, he’s so much more the Punisher than Thomas Jane and Bruce Willis could ever be. *sends flowers to Ray Stevenson* But enough of my burning love for the main role – everyone, even all side characters, are perfect. It was a bit like watching Hellboy for the first time – all the time waiting for the one side character that makes you think “WTF, did they really find no-one who fit in a tiny bit better? Can’t be that hard” – but it never happens; the cast couldn’t be any better.
And, having praised script and cast, the essential thing… This movie has 120 bullets per minute, average. Awesome! And it has all the other Castle goodness in killing, crippling and punishing the bad boys; creative kills, cold hearted and efficient; raw, nasty, dirty, logical, beautiful, gory, giving you ouch moments all the time.
Yeah, we do see that Frank Castle isn’t some killing machine without remorse. We do learn about why he does what he does. We do see him give a blanket to a little girl. But we also see him kill both his sidekicks, we see him torture the kingpin, er, excuse me, Jigsaw; and we see him kill right before the eyes of the cops and walk away.
All the time, I’ve been scared to get to the “oh shit, now they messed it up” point – but it doesn’t come. Perfect, from the very beginning to the very end (which is a gun shot, naturally).
YES. I am in love.
YES. I believe in good comic based movies again.
YES. I wanna see a sequel.
YES. I wanna give Ray Stevenson an Oscar.