Movie Review: Man on Fire

‘Man on Fire’ is a 2004 action film with a darker underbelly by Director Tony Scott.

 

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Tony Scott is the late brother of Director, Ridley Scott, and has a string of hit movies behind his name including ‘Top Gun’, ‘Days of Thunder’, ‘Spy Game’ and ‘Enemy of the State’.

 

The movie is the second remake of the novel by A.J.Quinnell, and was located to Mexico City because of the high rate of political kidnappings going on there. (Although the novel was originally set in Italy, kidnappings have sharply declined there since the early 2000s and Scott wanted the movie to be current.)

 

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The 1987 film stars Scott Glenn as John Creasy, who exacts vengeance after the child he bodyguards is kidnapped by the mafia.

 

Starring Denzel Washington as the sombre John Creasy, the film features a stellar ensemble cast with Christopher Walken, Mickey Rourke, Rachel Ticotin, Dakota Fanning, Giancarlo Giannini and Marc Anthony.

 

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Even as a despondent alcoholic, Denzel is still as charismatic as ever. He’s got some great lines in the movie including this one; ‘There’s no tough, there’s only trained or untrained. Which one are you?’

 

Christopher Walken plays Creasy’s soldier mate and brings a lightness and balance to the film that offsets Creasy’s darkness. It’s good to see Walken in a more realistic role instead of the over-the-top characters he sometimes plays.

 

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Dakota Fanning gives a surprisingly good performance as Pita; who Creasy is hired to protect. She has great range in the film and has really come a long way since her earlier work.

 

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Rachel Ticotin is excellent in the film as a relentless, sharp-minded journalist determined to stop the corruption and the kidnappings.

 

Overall, ‘Man on Fire’ is a solid thriller with depth – but I will give a violence warning for one short gruesome part in the film (which I fast-forwarded through).

Here’s the Official Trailer for you to check out here:

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