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Punisher [Import]

VHS Tape
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars If society won't punish the guilty, he will. June 18 2004
Format:DVD
Let's face it, before Blade (1998), X-Men (2000) and Spider-Man (2002), Marvel Comics really didn't have much luck in getting successful films made based on their characters. The reason? Because they would often sell the movie rights to anyone who had two coins to rub together, releasing cinematic flops like Dr. Strange (1978), Howard the Duck (1986), Captain America (1989), and even a Fantastic Four movie that was so bad it never saw the light of day, as it was too bad to even release on video. And then there was The Punisher (1989), a character introduced in the 70's within the pages of The Amazing Spider-Man, issue 129, circa February 1974, a former police detective, now vigilante, taking revenge on criminals, motivated by the death of his family. Most people I know who've seen the film have pretty distinctive feelings about it, ranging from dislike to severe hate, but I always thought it was pretty good, considering...
The film, directed by Mark Goldblatt, whose primary credits include editing films like The Howling (1981), The Terminator (1984), and True Lies (1994), stars Dolph Lundgren, Louis Gossett, Jr., and Jerome Krabbé. Yeah, I know what you're thinking...Dolph Lundgren? I think a number of people had instant reservations when hearing Dolph, certainly an interminable dweller of the B movie circuit, pre-judging the film unfairly. Lou Gossett, Jr. brings a little star power to the table, but he also is no stranger to B movie fans appearing in films like Jaws 3-D (1983), Firewalker (1986), and any of the four or so Iron Eagle films.
The film opens with a television news report, giving us some expository background with regards to a mafia type recently acquitted of the crime of killing detective Frank Castle (Lungren) and his family five years prior.
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5.0 out of 5 stars great 80's Punisher movie April 20 2004
By A Customer
Format:DVD
This movie is great for what it is: an 80's Punisher movie. It's also the type of movie that seperates those who enjoy a great action movie from the more dogmatic and less fun. Take a look at the reviews on this site and you'll see what I mean. Action fans, who have read some Punsher comics and think it's a fun character, know an 80's action movie when they see one and can appreciate them for what they are: escapism. They enjoyed this movie.
You also have the flip side of the coin. These folks can't get past the Punisher's shirt, his having the wrong number or gender of kids, the wrong mobsters being the baddies, the wrong form of execution of his family (it's a car bomb in the movie), the wrong location of the execution (it's not in Central Park)...etc. and this is not a happy bunch. They aren't happy when Dolph is super-heroic and they aren't happy when he's more human and his shirt really bugs them.
Do any of these changes really get in the way of the movie being a great 80's action film. No. It's still a decent and entertaining movie, but they would disagree. "The Punisher has on the wrong shirt" is a major complaint, and "the new movie will be better" they hoped in vain. "Better" meant more true in every little detail to the book with no changes.
Now the '04 Punisher has arrived. Other than the shirt is the 2004 Punisher free of many of the "problems" that geekdom has with the '89 movie? Not really. Once again it seems the bad guy isn't exactly right in the new one, the Punisher's family isn't exactly right, and they are killed in Puerto Rico and not in Central Park...etc. and once again there will be folks that won't be happy. They are very "by the book" and the word escapism apparently is not in their book.
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3.0 out of 5 stars THE PUNISHER Review! March 22 2004
Format:VHS Tape
Not to be confused with its 2004 remake, Mark Goldblatt's dark and unapologeticly violent comic book adaption from 1989 takes onscreen brutality to a new level. Dolph Lundgren is a former cop, believed to have been murdered in a car bomb that ended his family's life, who exacts revenge on the crime syndicate that he believes is responsible. Louis Gossett, Jr. is a cop who believes that all of these murders are in fact being caused by his former partner. With the mafia bosses suffering such massive losses, the head of the Yakuza enters and violent assurts herself into the acquation, kidnapping the bosses' children and holding them for ransom. With nowhere else to turn, the bosses call on "The Punisher" for an unlikely alliance.
"Punisher" is excessively violent. There are torture scenes, bloody shoot-outs, and more than a few people getting kicked in the face with blade-tipped shoes. The story, courtesy of Boaz Yakin, does have a sense of humor though. Most of the film's big laughs come from Barry Otto's drunken out-of-work theatre peformer who doubles as Lundgren's unwilling sidekick. Lundgren himself gets to drop a few funny one-liners as well while Louis Gossett and Jeroen Krabbe give performances that prove worthy of their resume. The relatively-unknown Kim Myori is also great as the super evil Yakuza boss.
As far as full-length comic book movies go, this one is not quite on the level of Tim Burton's "Batman" or Sam Raimi's "Spider Man" but there have certainly been a lot worse.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
I was happy to receive this item in a prompt fashion
Published 1 month ago by Russell L Ward
4.0 out of 5 stars this movie is a must for your collection
i received this movie on the expected date. i am happy to have found this movie for my collection, but i must admit that after watching it, this time, i found the story and... Read more
Published 6 months ago by claudw-xy
4.0 out of 5 stars i think it presents a darker ,more faithful version of the character...
i found this version of The Punisher much different than the 2004 version.i think it is darker and probably more faithful to the comic book. Read more
Published on Aug. 3 2007 by falcon
3.0 out of 5 stars punisher
this dudes family gets wasted in front of him so he goes on a murderous rampage vs organized crime.the punisher is played by the russian dude from rocky 4. Read more
Published on July 9 2004 by abe
4.0 out of 5 stars Good but should have spent more time with Dolph
They should have spent more time with the Punisher, but instead they focus too much on the two groups of bad guys in the movie, the Yakuza and the other mafia type gang. Read more
Published on June 26 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars As good as the new one.
The action in this movie is the best. The effects this movie uses for being from 1989 are awesome. And take this tip from someone who cares. Read more
Published on June 6 2004 by roberto vizcarra
3.0 out of 5 stars fun
this is an awesome dolph flick. the punisher punishes the guilty and the corpses pile up. having the punishers old partner involved is a good idea and the kidnapping of mobster's... Read more
Published on May 3 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars THE OTHER GOOD PUNISHER
Warning: this critique is not intended for clothes fetishists. If you have a "thing" for the Punisher's shirt, with or without the skull, this ain't for you. Read more
Published on April 27 2004
3.0 out of 5 stars Weak, but a LOT better than the idiotic new version.
At least this version had the sense to leave off the laughable "skull shirt" the destroys any sense of realism in the new version and makes it impossible to suspend... Read more
Published on April 25 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars UNDERRATED SHOOT 'EM UP
Marvel's Punisher has long been one of my favorite comic book characters. Not really a superhero, the Punisher is a flesh & blood mortal possessed by an insatiable hunger for... Read more
Published on March 18 2004 by K. Jump
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