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4.2 out of 5 stars121
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 19 January 2009
A forgotten classic that's Dolphs best role after Rocky IV. Plenty of slick gun and martial arts action with a dark moody style and a decent enough cast and story to raise it above all the other 'VHS premier' Dolph action fodder.
If this film had had a proper blockbuster budget they wouldn't have bothered with the tame 2004 remake but for what it is this film is a forgotten gem and although ole Dolph acting is always a bit wooden this role really suits him and he follows it through with a real presence.
Its a shame it wasn't made today along with all the other comic book remakes but if a little dated it still holds its own especially with the great action scenes and is well worth a watch if you haven't already seen it.
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on 22 May 2006
An above average Dolph movie, which, if you know nothing of the comic book (and I didn't until i saw the 2004 remake, which is, in places, a rather sanitised version) will keep you entertained as long as you aren't expecting an acting masterclass.

But my best advice to you is to read the review of the person just several places below me here. You'll know it instantly - the one with the numbered list of "mistakes" the makers of this film made. Hilarious. Atrocious spelling apart, I now have a good idea of what movie magazines refer to when they mention the "fanboys" who feel the need to pick holes in every aspect of the movie adaptions of comic books. Some people really have no grip on reality...

Sorry if you were expecting more of a dissection of the movie itself - but it's Dolph Lundgren, so it does what it says on the box. Remember, it's just an escapist action movie - not a monument to the ages. Worth a rental fee, but i would suggest spending your hard-earned money on a couple of decent books.
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on 23 October 2006
The Punisher is big, brutal fun, beginning and ending with Dolph sitting butt nekkid in a sewer talking to God in a deep rumbling voice. In-between the two butt-shots he looks ultra-cool in black leather, rides his motorcycle a lot, kicks a mean punch, scowls and drives his former police buddy Luis Gosset into politically correct paroxysms saying things like:
"Work in progress." in reference to 125 gangsters killed in 5 years because:
"The guilty will be punished!"
That's really good to hear in these psychoanalytical social sciences times.
Forget the later softies flick taking in vain the name of Punisher. This is the one!
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on 7 April 2013
For those interested, the film is presented in full HD 1080p, and has optional 5.1 DTS HD Master Audio. The back of the cover states it is only 1080i, but it also states the running time as 85 minutes, when it actually runs a little over 89 minutes. So clearly they made a mistake.

There are no extras.


Running time - 89 minutes 5 seconds
2.0 English PCM Stereo
5.1 English DTS HD Master Audio
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The Punisher is based on the - particularly violent - Marvel comic book of the same name from the seventies, where a former FBI agent has his family murdered and goes out for revenge his own way.

Whereas today, Marvel movies are given huge budgets ala The Avengers, Thor and Iron Man, this one was handed out to a little-known Australian company to make. The results being that The Avengers, Thor and Iron man it is not.

Every character is pretty stereotypical and one-dimensional. The dialogue is a bit forced. The budget is slim and the story hardly inspired. All in all, it has all the hallmarks of a disaster in the making. Yet it's actually pretty cool... if you know what you're getting.

It's a blatant B-movie. It's like actually watching a live action comic book. You wouldn't expect Oscar-worthy dialogue and acting from a comic book, would you? Hopefully not. So don't expect it here. It's a movie designed to munch popcorn to. It has plenty of explosions, killing of badguys and cheeky one-liners from our strong and silent hero, The Punisher.

They ever remade it (twice), but, despite having bigger budgets, better acting and more bankable stars, neither seemed to quite capture the raw comicbook style which the 1989 version managed.

If you're a fan of cheesy eighties action (think Commando, Rambo and almost any Jean Claude Van Damme film) then give this one a go. It's short and to the point, but mainly great mindless fun.
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on 29 September 2014
This UK release Blu-ray is great quality, I was worried at first with the old NEW WORLD logo which had lots of dirt and sparkle, but after that the film is crisp and clean, another thing to note is this UK Blu-ray version has been resubbmitted to the BBFC and the cut have been put back, ergo this version is the uncut version, which made my purchase even better.
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on 30 April 2013
... and the only film to feature Dolph Lundgren in the lead role and although a bit wooden with his swedish/american accent dialogue, he is believable. Give the Thomas Jane and Ray Stevenson abortions a wide berth and go for the original and best attempt to bring Frank Castle to the big screen.

This movie was scorned by many at the time but I could never understand why, it has great action and convincing characters and some nasty bad guys to boot. For anyone who is a fan of the Marvel comics character then you will be happy here as the action violence is no holds barred and Robocop-esque, exploding bullet effect style.

Finally we get to see the movie in 1080p (or close to it), picture is crisp and the blacks are strong with a slight element of grain - this version is obviously a new edition sourced from the original print. The sound is ok, a little tinny in parts but acceptable.

Highly recommended!
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on 5 September 2013
I think we can all agree the punisher films have hobbled along being pretty unimpressive, even if they did try their best, (tip of the hat to warzone) but with this the origional and best punisher film, all eighties action with none of the cheese. Even the one-liners are drawn out of dolph lungren's dull broken voice. The movie itself isnt the best acted film but is worth purchasing for the entertainment value, like commando it is too much fun. There are no special features which i was disapointed with but the blu-ray transfer is outstanding. On the whole i'd thoroughly recomend this item to any true action fan.
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on 8 July 2015
Frank Castle, an ex-cop who's family was murdered by mobsters. Now legally declared dead, he strikes back from beyond the grave, killing mobsters wherever he can find them.

As a result of this, the mobsters families have weakened, forcing Gianni Franco, one of the leaders of one of the families, to come in and take control of the families.

Franco has a plan to bring the families together as one unit. However, this has attracted the attention of the Yakuza, Asia's most powerful crime syndicate, who decide to take over the families and all their interests.

In order to sway the mobsters to their cause, they kidnap their children.

Now the Punisher must fight to save the lives of the children of the people he has fought against for five years...

Much better than the Jane movie (although that is till good), Lundgrens Punisher made comic book movies cool before the likes of Spiderman et al.

But it's a totally different kind of movie to the comic book ones we see now. It's atypical eighties action movie, which is no bad thing.

The type of movie where a shotgun can hold 50 cartridges.

The type of movie where a cop who is being held hostage beats two men up and casually walk away eating pizza The type of movie where the hero has a camp thespian as a sidekick.

It's the type of movie that makes no sense whatsoever, but tries to cover it up by killing as many people as possible and by firing as many bullets as possible in on scene.

Lundgren is good (but fair enough, he doesn't have to do much apart from grunt and look tired. In fact the bags under his eyes are the main stars here) And Gossett.Jr adds that star power, with a little bit of humour.

So it's just a fun film that doesn't take itself seriously and provides a lot of action for such a small budget.

Plus its the best film ever to feature a scientist on a back rack wearing high heels.

Recommended for eighties action fans.
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on 21 March 2014
First Of All Anchor Bay, Is Selling This Wrong Or Misleading The Customer By Having The Skull Logo On Lundgren's Clothes On Both The Box & Menu Screen. Lundgren Does Not Wear The Logo, But Does Have It Carved On His Knives.
This Loose Adaptation Of The Marvel Comic Is A Run-Of-The-Mill 80's Action Thriller Predictable But Very Entertaining. The HD Upscale Is Great But Still Features Some Age Spots Which I Like Giving This Some Of The Grainy 80's Atmosphere Which Has To Be Present To Enjoy A Typical 80's Action Movie Like This.

Extars: NONE
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