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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping but underated
Due to this films rubbish sequels(each one worse than the last)critics seem to tarnish it with the same brush. If your new to this film ignore the critics and go buy. Its the gripping and sometimes disturbing story of Paul Kersey who turns vigilante after his wife is killed and his daughter raped by low life scum who break into his house. This is one of the first films(if...
Published on 20 Oct 2007 by D Skilton

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Revenge time
Death Wish is gritty and has a politically interesting ending but Michael Winner's direction and over all script have dated badly. Charles Bronsan gives a great performance and the rest of the cast support him well. The film is worth watching because it tries its best to capture the mood of the time it was made, early 1970's New York.
Published 12 months ago by m j cuddy


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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping but underated, 20 Oct 2007
By 
D Skilton (east sussex uk) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Death Wish [DVD] [1974] (DVD)
Due to this films rubbish sequels(each one worse than the last)critics seem to tarnish it with the same brush. If your new to this film ignore the critics and go buy. Its the gripping and sometimes disturbing story of Paul Kersey who turns vigilante after his wife is killed and his daughter raped by low life scum who break into his house. This is one of the first films(if not the first)of its kind and also one of the most underated movies of the seventies. Even though it does seem a little dated now. Charles Bronson is on top form as Kersey. Also to my knowledge this is the first time the film is available in its uncut version on either dvd or video.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Death Wish 1974 US Blu-Ray, 18 Jan 2014
By 
M. Stewart "kimble" (scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Death Wish: 40th Anniversary [Blu-ray] [1974] [US Import] (Blu-ray)
First off i pre-ordered this from dvd world usa and have received my copy early.

This US disc is region free so uk fans buy with confidence.

The film is presented in 1.78.1 according to imdb the films original aspect ratio is 1.85.1 so don't know why that wasn't used for this blu ray.

PQ is very good vibrant colours and a clear picture that looks like it has been re-mastered.
I have death wish on dvd and the blu-ray was worth the upgrade.

SQ is DTS-HD MASTER AUDIO 2.0.

Special features are poor just a theatrical trailer.

If you are a fan of this movie and own the sequels on blu-ray then this disc is worth importing.
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still relevant. Still entertaining. A good film to own., 14 Dec 2003
By 
mr_ska (London, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Death Wish. What a film. This film rode the tide of admiration for vigilante action against the ones that seem to avoid justice or just plain slip through the cracks. When Paul Kersey's (Bronson) wife and daughter are attacked in their own home, beaten and sexual assaulted by a gang of low life scum, the police and the courts offer no justice. Later after learning to shoot and ditching his liberal values Kersey takes to the streets to dispense some real justice!
Now this sure does raise some interesting moral questions, but lets face it, we all back Bronson/Kersey, and maybe even secretly admire his actions, at least to some extent. We know that what he does is wrong, but the 'thrill' of revenge and harsh punishment dealt out to criminals sure carries a hell of a punch. You may be surprised just how relevant and fresh the issues are to modern Britain now. Time to remind yourself just how important a film this is.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A gritty urban tale, 15 Oct 2008
By 
LXIX (scotland) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Death Wish [DVD] [1974] (DVD)
Death Wish is considered to be a classic movie and even though it was first released in 1974, it still stands the test of time.

A respectable New York civil engineer's life changes when his wife is murdered and his daughter is raped in their own apartment while he's at work. After a business trip to Tucson, Arizona (where he is given a pistol as a leaving present) he then returns to New York and reinvents himself as a vigilante.

I wonder how the New York tourist authorities took to this when it first came out... Death Wish is a dark tale - as expected, there's little cheer in this movie. It's also a rather slow starter - for example, Paul Kersey (the protagonist) doesn't bump off his first mugger until the 44th minute (it's a 93 minute movie). Once he gets into the swing of things though, he helps clean up the streets by shooting down 10 street thugs in total - and even 'honeytraps' a few by flashing a bulging wallet in a cafe.

Deliberately seeking out violent thugs is not without its costs and Kersey suffers for his 'art' (being stabbed in the shoulder by one and shot in the leg in another incident).

This film is the vigilante anthem. Most people don't have complete faith in the criminal justice system and so everyone can relate to Paul Kersey to some extent (Charles Bronson).

Overall, this is a classic movie, mainly because of its central theme rather than its acting ability or its score.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Classic From Charles Bronson, 18 Dec 2003
'Death Wish'. The title really sums up the whole film, and how violent its going to be. Thats not a problem though as this is a great film and by now is definately, in my eyes if no one elses, an all time classic.
It stars Charles Bronson as Paul Kersey who turns from a normal everyday man to an urban vigilante who deals out some real justice after his wife is murdered and his daughter-in-law is raped by some thugs.
The acting in this film is great, especially from Charles Bronson, who really shows the emotions of Kersey well, and as i'm sure you already know, the audience, (well me anyway) have no trouble believing that Paul Kersey could really do such a thing because how can they not when Bronson is playing the role.
In total there are four sequels following on from this one which i will be honest about and say that i have never seen them despite my liking of the original. Its not that i don't want to see them, its just that they are quite hard to find.
So, if you are a fan of Charles Bronson then you simply must buy this film, if you are not a fan of Charles Bronson, then still by this film and by the end of it you probably will find that you have become a fan.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars death wish, 5 Sep 2006
By 
Chris Jones "MEDEASOLUSINS" (UNITED KINGDOM) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Death Wish [DVD] [1974] (DVD)
wow for the first time in the uk the un-cut version , so now you can see why bronson gose mad and more violent great widescreen print and at a running time of 93 mins just wish the others were out in the uk, not including the badly cut death wish two on columbia dvd, this is a must for all bronson fans and film buffs.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Death Wish 1 - DVD, 26 Jan 2014
This review is from: Death Wish [DVD] [1974] (DVD)
Death Wish is a very upfront movie about violence/crime in the USA and how a man who had his wife killed and his daughter raped decides to get revenge.
Charles Bronson is such a chilled out actor that fits in brilliantly in the role of a vigilante. He really does a fine job in this film and gives one of his best ever performances on film.
This is a violent movie but compared to modern violent films it's quite tame, but the brilliant acting does make this quite convincing.
There was several sequels, and the 2nd version of Death Wish is also a great film, but as with many movies with multiple sequels they tend to drop in quality.
Definitely a great movie full of suspense, action and Charles Bronson shooting bad guys.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A better film than its reputation, 15 Sep 2010
By 
Trevor Willsmer (London, England) - See all my reviews
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Despite switching the emphasis around entirely from the novel's argument that vigilantes = bad to vigilantes = f---ing great, the first Death Wish is a surprisingly pretty decent film, if only because Michael Winner still had enough ability to hire a crew and cast who knew what they were doing to make him look good. It's a shame that at a fairly late date new producer Dino De Laurentiis took over the project and changed his mind about the direction the film would take, though: it was written originally for Sidney Lumet and Jack Lemmon and was more like a middle class version of Taxi Driver, the anti-hero's vigilantism descending into indiscriminate killing of anyone he doesn't like the look of that's just as bad as the lowlives he stalks. Unfortunately Winner happened to be reading the novel and described the plot to Bronson on the way back from the set of The Stone Killer.

"I'd like to do that," said Bronson.
"What, make a movie of the book?"
"No, shoot muggers."

The rest is history. To be fair, Bronson makes a decent stab at playing a bleeding heart liberal architect (the character hadn't yet undergone his metamorphosis into a gun-toting Superman), but whereas with Lemmon there would have been some surprise when his frustrated everyman killed, here it's more of a surprise that it takes Bronson so long to get down to it (the movie is nearly half over before his killing spree begins). And whereas Lumet would have drawn out the moral ambiguities, Winner just takes the story at face value and delivers what ends up as an efficient violent urban wish-fulfilment fantasy. On that level it delivers pretty well, tapping into both the urban frustration of the early 70s when society seemed to be in terminal decline as well as the frontier mentality that plays such a part in America's gun culture. It's a shame the film doesn't make more of the game of cat-and-mouse between Bronson and Vincent Gardenia's detective towards the end of the film after the vigilante's identity has been uncovered, but it's still a smarter and more emotionally honest film than it's sequels (check out Bronson's reaction of fear and self-disgust when he confronts his first mugger). It also offers a chance to see early performances by Jeff Goldblum (as one of the rapists), Olympia Dukakis and Christopher Guest, though it's a shame Herbie Hancock's score isn't a little more restrained at times.

Paramount's Region 1 DVD is a decent uncut widescren transfer and, unlike their UK DVD, includes the theatrical trailer
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bronson's still deadly!, 24 Jun 2010
By 
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This review is from: Death Wish [DVD] [1974] (DVD)
Though it may seem like another cheesey Bronson action 'flick, this is a surprisingly realistic and thought-provoking film. When his wife is murdered and raped, Paul Kersey (Bronson) decides to take revenge on the criminals who destroyed his life. It's surprising, we see Bronson spiral into a violent vigilante, compared to the mild-mannered architect we saw before. There's a graphic rape scene, though it should be said that there are much worse things in modern cinema.

There are sequels to the film, though they lost the realistic touch (especially DW3!), and seemed to take the more action approach. Overall, this film was, and still is, the best.

N.B.- You should watch out for Jeff Goldblum, in his debut role as one of the hoodlums.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic!, 13 Oct 2007
By 
Wayne Redhart "@wayneredhart on Twitter!" (West Midlands, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Death Wish [DVD] [1974] (DVD)
Michael Winner's masterpiece has aged well. Aside from being an excellent action film, it also questions the morality of vigilante behaviour and asks whether it merely leads to anarchy. Personally I am all for it though. A couple of weeks ago I was browsing in a branch of a major high-street discount bookstore, when a masked gunman entered and demanded the money from the till. Fortunately the quick thinking of a maverick workman foiled the crime. He removed a tool from his box and hurled it across the room, knocking the gunman clean out. If you ask me, his heroic behaviour should be an example to us all- in a day when most people are too scared to stand up for what is right. If more of us were willing to throw a spanner in 'The Works' when a crime is in progress, the world would be a safer place.
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Death Wish: 40th Anniversary [Blu-ray] [1974] [US Import]
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