The Equalizer Blu-ray Review
Robert McCall (Washington) doesn’t seem like a ruthless killing machine. He’s one of the hardest working employees of his big box home improvement store, he’s a bit of a neat freak and he’s willing to help out his fellow employees. His calm demeanor as he buries his nose into a book, would imply he’s just an ordinary nice guy who loves his job, but behind that pearly white smile, are calculating eyes, and a pension for blood filled justice.
McCall has no problem dispatching petty criminals or threatening corrupt police. He knows when to strike and how to. He’s actually pretty good at remaining unseen while righting the wrongs of life, but he may have crossed paths with someone even more ruthless and unrelenting, the Russian mob. While frequenting his favorite diner, McCall has befriend Teri (Moretz), a teenage prostitute, who from a very young age, has been used, abused and slapped around by the Russians and their disgusting clientele. Unfortunately for the mafia fiends, they’ve put her in the hospital for the last time.
What makes McCall likeable is that he doesn’t automatically resort to killing. If anything, killing is the immediate go to when his terms cannot be agreed upon. And it’s not like his terms are outrageous. They’re typically very simple. Quit being an awful person. A lot of times, the people will agree to it after some bone breaking persuasion, but those who don’t meet a gruesome end. And the Russian mob isn’t one to bow down to the wishes of one single man.
While the violence can be shocking, such as one man who’s hung by barbed wire, it’s not gratuitous or graphic. Of course gruesome moments like that are saved for the end. Up until that point, McCall disposes of people like you would see in any run-of-the-mill action movie. The ending is the true house of horrors for anyone who might have a weak stomach or prone to peering at the screen through fingers.
And even if you don’t like how McCall handles justice, it’s hard to hate Denzel. He’s always been a fine actor and a much underrated action star. Playing an unstoppable force just seems like a role he was born to play, but his charm adds a necessary level. Without that natural concern and love he shows for his friends and co-workers, his end of the movie slaughter fest wouldn’t feel necessary, but he’s also someone who realizes that he may not like that part about him.
The first half of the movie establishes a life he wants, but when need be, he falls back into what he used to be to help correct the injustices of the world. It makes you a little curious about what happened in his earlier career as a trained killer for the government which made him turn over a new leaf. Maybe he’s a just firm believer in fairness for all people on Earth and prefers using a nail gun and bold threats to impose it.
Video: (1080p Widescreen 2:39:1) For a movie that takes place usually at night, it’s good that the presentation comes through clear so that we can visually understand all the action and decipher many of its darker moments.
Audio: (English DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1) The smooth transitions between explosions, dialogue, and the natural sounds of a hardware store are seamless on this Blu-ray.
Vengeance Mode: This is an interesting feature. It’s a making-of and commentary into the movie. It plays the movie while cutting in every once and a while to give viewers a chance to watch interviews, clips from the shoots and other small features.
Inside the Equalizer (7:51): I knew beforehand this was based on a TV show, but I never watched it. This feature helps by taking a look back at the TV show and reflecting on its protagonist, McCall.
Denzel Washington: A Different Kind of Superhero (6:56): Why not have a feature highlighting your best asset? This focuses on what Denzel brought to the set and to the movie.
Equalizer Vision: Antoine Fuqua (7:06): As you’d suspect, this is a feature focusing on the director. This highlights Fuqua’s work ethic and how he directed the movie as well as his collaborations with Denzel
Children of the Night (5:23): A short look at Chloe Grace Moretz and what she brought to her character.
One Man Army: Training and Fighting (6:40): A very necessary feature since this movie has many physically demanding fight scenes. It’s great to see how everything is choreographed and it’s great to hear that Denzel prefers to do his own stunts.
Home Mart: Taking Care of Business One Bolt at a Time (2:11): It’s good to see a feature with a sense of humor. It plays like a commercial/promo for the fake store that McCall works for.
Photo Gallery: A collection of stills from the set.