Written by / 12/02/2023 / No comments / , , , , , , , , , , , ,

MICHAEL WINNER DIRECTS CHARLES BRONSON IN 'DEATH WISH'

Title: DEATH WISH Year: 1974 Rating: *****

Of director Michael Winner and actor Charles Bronson's crime-trilogy spanning three consecutive years from 1972 to 1974... centering on hit-men for THE MECHANIC and cops in THE STONE KILLER... the most popular was saved for last as DEATH WISH centers on a vigilante — ironically a cross between lawman and assassin...

It's also more skillfully directed and acted: specifically providing tough guy Charles Bronson... also a former character-actor dating back to the 1950's... a comparably grounded and vulnerable (starring) role...

Charles Bronson in DEATH WISH with William Redfield & Chris Gampel

At one point, when Bronson's Manhattan-based husband/father Paul Kersey's described as a bleeding heart liberal, it seems written for someone else... yet the progression from brooding every-man to the inevitably lethal mugger-slaying nighthawk takes it time, never feeling like a cheap set-up for the body count violence built into the title...

Mostly thanks to an exceptional script, allowing Winner to fluidly build every scene like separated vignettes joined as a whole... based very loosely on a mediocre novel by Brian Garfield that ends where the movie starts picking up steam — after Kersey's first actual kill following tense and suspenseful practice runs... 

Charles Margolin and Stuart Margolin in DEATH WISH

Yet the most memorable, pivotal sequence occurs early on... after his wife's killed with his daughter left mentally and emotionally traumatized by rapist muggers (led by Jeff Goldblum)... when Kersey takes a busman's holiday to Arizona, working for good-old-boy Stuart Margolin, gifting Paul with a pistol that once belonged to a Wild West gunslinger...

Deliberately suited for the artistic, theme-oriented auteur — making DEATH WISH not only Michael Winner's epitome of an urbanized modern Western... including a blunt, experienced sheriff (Vincent Gardenia) and a sporadic moral-conscious (son-in-law Steven Keats)... it's a unique blend of edgy 1970's exploitation with mainstream action for the uniquely tense and, from this point on, Hollywood superstar who'd already paid his dues, and then some.

Charles Bronson in DEATH WISH
Jeff Goldblum as main rapist in DEATH WISH
Hope Lange in DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson and son-in-law Steven Keats in DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson in DEATH WISH
Christopher Guest cop cameo in DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson and Hope Lange in DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson and Stuart Margolin in DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson and Edward Grover in DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson in DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson and son-in-law Steven Keats in DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson in the very-very sequel-teasing end of DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson in DEATH WISH poster-art
Charles Bronson, Jeff Goldblum and Christopher Logan from DEATH WISH poster
Vincent Gardenia as the police chief from DEATH WISH
Stuart Margolin from DEATH WISH
Stuart Margolin from DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson in DEATH WISH
Charles Bronson in DEATH WISH

Share This Post :
Tags : , , , , , , , , , , , ,

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

All Time Popular

Featured Post

LAWRENCE TIERNEY & BETTY LAWFORD IN 'THE DEVIL THUMBS A RIDE'

Lawrence Tierney & Betty Lawford in The Devil Thumbs a Ride Year: 1947 Rates: ***1/2 One year after Lawrence Tierney played an affable c...

WWW.CULTFILMFREAKS.COM

WWW.CULTFILMFREAKS.COM
Movie Reviews, Interviews, Articles and Pop Culture from White Heat to Blue City

RIP ACTOR KEN HUTCHISON

TOTAL HITS

Popular Trending

FOUNDED BY JAMES M. TATE

FOUNDED BY JAMES M. TATE
RANDOM QUOTE: "I love my country and I love my slippers." Jack Benny in Ernst Lubitsch's To Be Or Not To Be

FILM NOIR & NEO NOIR CRIME

FAVORITES SHORTLIST

1)OTLEY 2)HELL IS A CITY 3)ROBBERY 4)THE FEARMAKERS 5)CANYON PASSAGE 6)VIOLENT SATURDAY 7)HOT CARS 8)JUNGLE STREET 9)THE CROWDED SKY 10)THE ROARING TWENTIES 11) ANATOMY OF A MURDER 12)SHARKS' TREASURE 13)SWEENEY TWO 14)RAIDERS FROM BENEATH THE SEA 15)HARDCORE 16)THE SYSTEM 17)WHITE HEAT 18)AL CAPONE 19)HIDDEN FEAR 20)FALLEN ANGEL 21)NIGHT CREATURES 22)THE HEROIN BUSTERS 23)ASH WEDNESDAY 24)THE BREAK 25)AIR PATROL 26)THE STONE KILLER 27)EASY LIVING 28)WILLIAM CONRAD'S BRAINSTORM 29)FRENZY 30)THE MAN FROM LARAMIE 1)DANA ANDREWS 2)JAMES CAGNEY 3)STANLEY BAKER 4)MARLON BRANDO 5)CHARLES BRONSON1)VIRGINIA MAYO 2)SUE LYON 3)GENE TIERNEY 4)MERRY ANDERS 5)FAYE DUNAWAY DIRECTORS 1)JACQUES TOURNEUR 2)RICHARD FLEISCHER 3)STANLEY KUBRICK 4)ORSON WELLES 5)OTTO PREMINGER 6)JOHN LANDIS 7)JOHN GUILLERMAN 8)VAL GUEST 9)JOHN CARPENTER 10)MICHAEL WINNER

BRITISH NEW WAVE CINEMA

RARITIES AND EXPLOITATION

HAMMER HORROR & THRILLER

Popular This Month

CHARLES BRONSON CINEMA

CINEMA OF DANA ANDREWS

WESTERN GENRE REVIEWS

PEAKING INTO THE SIXTIES

KICKING IN THE EIGHTIES

TALES AND REFLECTIONS

REVVING THE SEVENTIES

FOR HORROR MOVIE REVIEWS

Most Popular Last Year

RETURN TO THE HOMEPAGE