Schumacher's film goes beyond the confines of vigilante films like Death Wish whose concerns stop at the criminal justice system. 'D-Fens' (Douglas), named after his own car number plate and his now redundant job as a bastion of America's nuclear defence industry, is a one-man terrorist in the Los Angeles jungle. Forced by a traffic jam to make his way 'home' on foot, Douglas strikes at various targets: rude car drivers, obstructive fast-food workers, violent gangs, overcharging Korean shopkeepers, snobby golf-course wrinklies. However, the only person he directly murders is a disgusting, homophobic neo-Nazi. The scumbag is played by the invariably excellent Forrest who, along with Duvall as a speak-softly cop and Hershey as Douglas's estranged wife, gives the cast an air of huge respectability. There are reservations: too many plot and moral loose-ends, while the film veers giddily between Douglas the psycho-menace and Douglas the sad sympathy-object. Sometimes funny, sometimes touching, and certainly unnerving.
Cast and crew
|Screenwriter:||Ebbe Roe Smith|