In The Equalizer director Antoine Fuqua provides us with Robert McCall (Denzel Washington), an average Joe with a not so average past. He spends his days quietly and routinely working at a local Hardware store and his restless dull nights at a diner reading literature.
While there he befriends the innocent and kind hearted Teri (Chloe Grace Moretz) who is trapped working as a prostitute for the Russian Mob. When Teri ends up in hospital after being beaten by the Mob, McCall visits the clique of gangsters responsible and before you know it he finds himself knee deep in a wave of corrupt cops and Russian baddies, including Teddy (Marton Csokas) sent from Russia to fix the rapidly explosive situation.
Based on the 1980s TV series of the same name, The Equalizer is a perfectly entertaining dose of shameless action and vengeful driven drama. It’s action sequences are all impressively executed and Fuqua includes many imposing long shots of Boston which set the urban city scene very well.
Denzel Washington reunites with Director Fuqua after a 13 year absence from their last team-up, Training Day (for which Washington earned an Oscar) . Neither one however enjoys any where near the same level of success with Washington, typically doing his very best, under-served with the limited script provided and Fuqua guilty of suffering from a severe lack of fresh ideas (especially in the middle of the film) and some character backdrop explanation desperately left wanting for Washington’s McCall.
The film could easily chop about twenty minutes off its overly long and baggy two hour running time and at times lingers on too many scenes for too long.
Although not entirely unique or original, The Equalizer provides just enough action and intriguing characters to keep the audience satisfied.
With a worldwide gross currently sitting at over $100 million (on a $64 million budget), The Equalizer is an unequivocal success and the chance of a franchise spawning from this film looks likely given its success. That would be exciting for a number of reasons not least of which is because of the fact that many movie trivia fans will tell you, Denzel Washington has never made a sequel…yet.