|Written by|| Richard Wenk|
The Equalizer TV series by:
|Directed by||Antoine Fuqua|
|Produced by||Todd Black|
Chloë Grace Moretz
|Music by||Harry Gregson-Williams|
|Cinematography by||Mauro Fiore|
|Editing by||John Refoua|
|Studio||Village Roadshow Pictures|
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
|Release Date||September 26, 2014|
|Run time||132 min.|
The film received mixed to positive critical review and earned a box office gross over $192 million.
Although the The Equalizer is a vigilante movie, it has a Die Hard scenario concept towards the end of it.
Robert McCall (Denzel Washington) is a retired black ops government operative who lives in Boston, Massachusetts and works at a Home Mart hardware store, where he befriends many of his co-workers and also tries to help a security guard trainee named Ralphie pass his qualification exam. McCall has promised his recently deceased wife that he'd leave his old life behind.
McCall's teenaged friend Alina (Chloë Grace Moretz), who was a child victim of sex trafficking by the Russian Mafia, is brutally beaten by her pimp, Slavi (David Meunier). McCall enters a restaurant owned by the Russian mob and tries to convince Slavi to release Alina by paying him $9800, but Slavi declines the offer. Failing in his nice approach, McCall's training kicks in and he kills Slavi and four of his men, removing all security camera footage.
Russian mafia leader Vladimir Pushkin (Vladimir Kulich) sends his enforcer Teddy (Marton Csokas) to Boston to find and eliminate the culprit. Meanwhile, Ralph withdraws his application for being a security guard at Home Mart to help out his mother at his family restaurant, which was set on fire by corrupt policemen as an act of extortion. McCall confronts the corrupt policemen and forces them to pay back all the money they have extorted. Ralph passes his test and becomes a security guard at Home Mart.
Teddy determines McCall is the culprit; surprised by the skill sets McCall possesses, Teddy decides to capture and press-gang him into service rather than kill him. McCall outsmarts his pursuers and completes more acts of vigilantism. McCall visits fellow retired, married operatives Susan (Melissa Leo) and Brian Plummer (Bill Pullman) in Virginia, who help him acquire intelligence on Pushkin's activities. It is revealed that Teddy is ex-Spetsnaz, and that his real name is Nicolai Itchenko. After McCall leaves, Susan remarks to Brian that McCall was not actually looking for help, but was asking for permission.
McCall captures Frank Masters (David Harbour), a corrupt policeman who has been aiding Teddy, trapping him in his car and flooding the vehicle with carbon monoxide to force him to cooperate. Frank relents and helps McCall destroy one of Pushkin's money laundering operations in Boston. McCall confronts Teddy at dinner, pledging to bring Pushkin's empire down. When McCall destroys a container ship Pushkin used to smuggle goods, Pushkin warns Teddy he can either kill McCall or not come home to Moscow.
Teddy and his men attack Home Mart and take Ralph and the workers hostage, threatening to kill them if McCall does not surrender. McCall enters the store and disables most of the lighting, tells Ralph to get the hostages to safety, and then kills Teddy's henchmen one by one. After a struggle between McCall and one of Teddy's men, Ralph comes back to help but is shot in the leg. McCall tells Ralph to turn on the electricity in exactly 40 seconds. McCall sets up small containers of propane and oxygen in a microwave; the electricity turns it on, causing an explosion that kills the last of Teddy's men. McCall finally kills Teddy with a nail gun.
McCall then travels to Moscow and kills Pushkin's guards, and sets up an electrical trap to kill Pushkin himself. McCall returns to Boston, where he reunites with Alina, who has recovered from her wounds and thanks him for giving her a second chance. McCall is inspired to continue using his skills to help people in need and posts an online advert, identifying himself as "The Equalizer". He soon receives another plea for help and agrees to answer it.
McCall and alliesEdit
- Denzel Washington as Robert McCall
- Chloë Grace Moretz as Alina/"Teri"
- Melissa Leo as Susan Plummer
- Bill Pullman as Brian Plummer
- Johnny Skourtis as Ralphie
Russian mobsters and associatesEdit
- Marton Csokas as Teddy/Nicolai Itchenko
- David Harbour as Detective Frank Masters
- Vladimir Kulich as Vladimir Pushkin
- David Meunier as Slavi
- Alex Veadov as Tevi
- James Wilcox as Detective Pederson
- Mike O'Dea as Detective Remar
- Tait Fletcher as Teddy's henchman #1
- Mark Stefanich as Teddy's henchman #2
- Dan Bilzerian as Teddy's henchman #3
- Matt Leonard as Teddy's henchman #4
- Sala Baker as Teddy's henchman #5 (credited as Elisala Baker)
- Yan Dron as Teddy's henchman #6
- Haley Bennett as Mandy
- Anastasia Mousis as Jenny
- Allen Maldonado as Marcus
- Rhet Kidd as Jay (as Chris Lemieux)
- Mike Morrell as Brian
- Robert Wahlberg as Det. Harris
- Timothy John Smith as Det. Gilly (as Timothy Smith)
In December 2011, it was reported that Denzel Washington would star in the title role of the film version, to be financed by Sony Pictures Entertainment and Escape Artists. Director Antoine Fuqua came on board to direct on March 21, 2013, reuniting him with Washington after their successful collaboration on the 2001 Oscar-winning film Training Day. Chloë Grace Moretz was announced as a co-star on May 10, 2013. On May 31, 2013, Melissa Leo was cast in the film. Leo previously worked with Washington in the 2012 film Flight, and with Fuqua in Olympus Has Fallen (2013).
Filming began in June 2013 with locations in Salisbury, Hamilton, Chelsea, Haverhill]], and Boston, Massachusetts.
On June 21, 2013, Harry Gregson-Williams was hired to compose the music for the film. Varèse Sarabande released a soundtrack album for The Equalizer on September 23, 2014.
On August 25, 2014, previews of the song "Guts Over Fear", by rapper Eminem and featuring Sia, with production by Emile Haynie, premiered in trailers for the film. The song also plays over the closing credits.
Promotion and marketingEdit
The first official image from the film was released on December 6, 2013. Sony originally planned on an April 11, 2014 release date, but pushed it back to September 26, 2014. The first official poster for the film was released on April 16, 2014. On April 22, USA Today revealed photos from the film. On May 24, the trailer for the film was released. On June 12, another official trailer for the film was released. On July 16, the IMAX poster for the film was released.
The film had a premiere at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival on September 7, 2014. Sony released the film in IMAX screen theaters worldwide on September 26, 2014.
As of December 15, 2014, The Equalizer earned a worldwide gross of $192.3 million against a budget of $55 million.
The film was released on September 26, 2014, in the United States and earned $12.6 million from 3,236 theaters in its first opening night including the $1.45 million it earned from 2,693 screens from Thursday night showings. On the second day the film earned $13.5 million and $8.1 million on the third day. Its opening day is the third biggest for Washington, tailing behind American Gangster ($15.8 million) and Safe House ($13.6 million). On its opening weekend the film earned $35,000,000 ($10,816 per theater) and debuted at number one at the box office. The film broke several records at the box office during its opening weekend including the biggest R-rated debut of September, surpassing Jackass: Number Two record ($29 million), the biggest IMAX opener of September, the biggest debut weekend gross for Antoine surpassing Olympus Has Fallen ($30 million), the third biggest domestic opening for Washington behind the aforementioned American Gangster ($43.6 million) and Safe House ($40.2 million) and the fourth biggest for a film released in September. It earned $3.3 million from 352 IMAX theaters.f> The film played 52% male and 65% over 30 years old.
The Equalizer earned $17.8 million overseas from 65 territories from 4,500 screens during its opening weekend with $1.4 million of the gross coming from 137 IMAX theaters. The film broke several September openings record in various territories including the UK, Netherlands, Israel, and Egypt. Top openings include the UK ($2.9 million), Russia ($2.7 million), Mexico ($1.4 million), Brazil ($1.3 million) United Arab Emirates ($875,000) and Malaysia ($650,000). Showings from Village Roadshow markets grossed an estimate $2.4 million with top openings including Australia ($1.9 million), New Zealand ($180,000) and Singapore ($300,000).
The Equalizer has received mixed reviews from critics. The praise went directly to Washington's performance and Fuqua's direction but the story and lack of character development received mixed reviews. On Rotten Tomatoes, a review aggregator, the film holds a rating of 61%, based on 175 reviews, and an average rating of 5.7/10. The site's consensus states: "The Equalizer is more stylishly violent than meaningful, but with Antoine Fuqua behind the cameras and Denzel Washington dispensing justice, it delivers." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 57 out of 100, based on 41 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".
On February 24, 2014, it was announced that Sony Pictures and Escape Artists are planning a sequel to the film, with Richard Wenk penning the script. In early October 2014, Fuqua said in an interview that there would be a sequel to the film only if audiences and Washington wanted it. He said it was an interesting character and the sequel could have more of an international flavor.