Punisher: War Zone mini review (2008)

based on a comic

It's been so long since I've seen the last two Punisher movies, I don't remember anything about them. Guess I'll have to go back and rent them and write up my reviews. This third attempt at starting up a Punisher franchise may be the best of the three, despite the poor reviews it's been getting.

Punisher: War Zone follows the basic premise of the comics - the family of Frank Castle (Ray Stevenson) is killed by the mob. He then takes the law into his own hands, becoming judge, jury, and executioner to those who are getting by with the current system. And in this version, he meets up with Jigsaw (Dominic West, 300), his comic book arch-nemesis.

This film has quite a different feel than then other Marvel films that have come out in the last few years - it's a lot darker, a lot more violent, and much more bloody. As a matter of fact, it's one of bloodiest movies I've seen in a long time - maybe moreso than 30 Days of Night. (Which made me wonder why that couple brought their 5-year-old kid; but who am I to judge?)  As a matter of fact, the intro showed the Marvel Knights logo rather than the regular Marvel logo. They also made a decent attempt to try to pull the comic book in - introduction of villain Jigsaw, and ally Micro(chip) (Wayne Knight, Justice League). 

It's a bit difficult to find the right words to describe this movie. I can't really say it was fun or enjoyable, but I guess it was as enjoyable as a movie this dark can be. It's a decent mindless action flick. I wasn't blown away (ha!) by it, but there are some excellent action sequences (the movie opens with an adrenaline rush), and there are some funny lines, and some good scenes.  There were some things that took away from the action, though.  Some plot points were a real stretch.  Yes, it's based on a comic book, so you accept certain things about the world, but when you play with the story, you can really screw it up.  I won't spoil the story with the details, but it left a little to be desired.

And, hey, did you know that Doug Hutchison (Loony Bin Jim) had a part in Batman and Robin?

See it if you like mindless movies with a lot of action, and can handle a lot of blood.

Don't see it if you like your superheroes who believe in a little less bloodshed.


Eddie Murphy as the Riddler?

I don't know...didn't we learn our lesson with Jim Carey? Well, if anyone can pull it off, Christopher Nolan can.