Sunday, August 7, 2011

Give Us Your Worst, Part 12: Punisher: War Zone

Punisher: War Zone is the most recent of the Punisher films, and is the only one we in The Middle Room have actually seen. There have been three made to date; one released back in 1989, and two more recent. We would have taken any of the movies for this project, had they been readily available. As it is, we stumbled across this at our local library, where some sadistic person appears to have "donated" it.

Normally, we wouldn't watch a movie that was part of a series out of order, but every Punisher movie made to date has been a reboot. This, we understand, is due to the fact that every Punisher movie made to date has been an abysmal failure.

Before we go on, we feel it's important to stress that there was nothing remotely redeeming about this movie. Like many of the movies we've seen in this experiment, it was unclear what the movie was trying to be. The direction felt like it was intended for kids, with comedic jokes and over-the-top delivery. Several characters were played purely for slapstick. However, seeing as the "R" rating was attached for grotesque scenes of gore, young audiences were more or less out of the question.

If anything, War Zone felt like it was trying to be Robocop. However, it failed to deliver comedy that was actually funny, violence that was actually shocking, characters who were actually interesting, or any kind of subversive message. Instead, it was a tedious exercise in gore and badly-staged action sequences.

This wasn't the worst movie we've seen in the "Give Us Your Worst" series. But it's definitely in the lower half. If this doesn't immediately come off as sufficiently negative, we suggest you review our previous installments.

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