Friday, February 25, 2005

MAN ON FIRE versus PUNISHER

So there I was in the video rental place. Couldn't see MAN ON FIRE anywhere, so I picked up SKY CAPTAIN and THE PUNISHER. Got to the checkout and asked, hey, got any MAN ON FIRE behind the counter? Yes, she answered, yes we fuckin' do. Foul-mouthed trollop. So I left THE PUNISHER behind.


Now, without having seen THE PUNISHER, I know it'd be a better film if it was more like MAN ON FIRE. But I also know, it'd be much better if it was more like the comic. Unsentimental. Uncompromising. Brutal. All of which MAN ON FIRE turned out to be. Who could watch Denzel execute a bent cop by shoving a lump of C4 up his ass without thinking of Ennis's Frank Castle? Now, there's also part of me that thinks, why the hell wasn't THE PUNISHER set in New York? It should be like a revenge SERPICO: New York specific, realistic. Anything else smacks of pragmatism, compromise. The very things Frank Castle despises. We should all be more like Frank. I'm having a new belt-buckle made: "what would Frank do?". Frank, Frank, FrankFrankFrank. I love saying it. Frank. FrankFrank. Really rolls offa the tongue.


But, hey, MAN ON FIRE is great. I'll maybe see THE PUNISHER when it reaches SKY MOVIES. I'm sure I'll hate it.

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