The Equalizer 2

The 1980’s TV series ‘The Equalizer’ was a big hit for actor Edward Woodward. Portraying a vigilante for hire, it’s interesting how its themes are still relevant. Seeking justice for the oppressed in an often unforgiving world, the format would suit any era. Which is why the first ‘Equalizer’ film was such a success, leading to this sequel. Whilst Woodward is long-gone, Denzil Washington more than ably takes up the mantle. Part nostalgia trip for fans of the TV version whilst carving its own path, ‘The Equalizer 2’ delivers razor sharp thrills.

Retired CIA agent Robert McCall (Denzil Washington) is a man continually living on the edge. Currently working as a chauffeur, McCall’s former ways swiftly catch up with him. Learning one of his old friends has been murdered, McCall decides to take action. Whilst hunting down her killers, he uncovers a conspiracy testing his lethal skills against a cabal of evil-doers.

The plot for ‘The Equalizer 2’ is fairly basic. The twists and turns may seem complex but the film relies on a threadbare premise. This could be a minus but in the hands of seasoned director Antoine Fuqua, ‘The Equalizer 2’ glides as a fast pace. Having starred in several of his other films, Washington’s partnership with Fuqua has conjured fine dividends. They both know how to peel the layers of McCall’s wounded character with the solid performances of the cast adding to the script’s gravitas.

For all its emotional turmoils, ‘The Equalizer 2’ heavily leans visceral action sequences. All are superbly handled with genuine tension. Although a finale amongst a windswept town feels stagey, the level of suspense created overcomes any implausible moments. Fuqua is a master of gritty set-pieces while not lingering too much on any bloodshed. The stunt team are the real stars of the movie and more than earn their hard earned dollars.

For an action thriller, ‘The Equalizer 2’ works. It may not join others in the action pantheon but it has more depth which a few lack. A third entry wouldn’t be unwelcome with this series showing a consistent high quality ensuring a good anti-hero can never lie dormant.

Rating out of 10: 7

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