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The Equalizer (A)

Audience Review

Release Date

2014 (India)
21 Nov 2014 (WorldWide)

The Equalizer Story

The Equalizer is a 2014 American action thriller film directed by Antoine Fuqua and written by Richard Wenk, based on the television series of the same name. It stars Denzel Washington, Chloë Grace Moretz, Marton Csokas, David Harbour, Bill Pullman and Melissa Leo.

Principal photography began in June 2013 on location and took place in different cities of Massachusetts. This was the first film to have Village Roadshow Pictures co-finance the deal with Sony Pictures Entertainment since Saving Silverman in 2001. The film was premiered at 2014 Toronto International Film Festival on September 7, 2014, and released worldwide on September 26. In India released on Nov 21, 2014.


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, but is compelled to act after his teenage friend Teri (Chloë Grace Moretz) whose real name is Alina, was seen being mistreated by her pimp. Alina's life was destroyed at the age of five or six when she was a victim of sex trafficking by the Russian Mafia and then became their sex slave and forced into prostitution.

Robert vows to save her after she is hospitalized after being 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 refuses. McCall pretends to walk away, but turns back and takes out Slavi and his men with their own weapons, removing the footage from all the security cameras.

In retaliation, 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 gotten through extortion. Ralph passes his test and becomes a security guard at Home Mart.

Teddy determines McCall is the culprit; surprised by his skills, Teddy tries to capture him to use those skills instead of killing him. McCall, however, outsmarts his pursuers and escapes, while completing more acts of vigilantism. McCall visits fellow retired operatives Susan Plummer (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-Spetnaz, and that his real name is Nikolai. After McCall leaves, Susan remarks to Brian that McCall was not actually looking for help, but was actually asking for permission.

McCall then captures Frank Masters (David Harbour), a corrupt Boston policeman who has been aiding Teddy, by trapping him in his car and threatening to flood the vehicle with carbon monoxide. Frank relents and helps McCall destroy one of Pushkin's money laundering operations in Boston. Later, McCall confronts Teddy at dinner; McCall pledges to bring Pushkin's empire down, and soon destroys a container ship used by Pushkin to smuggle goods. Unsatisfied with Teddy's lack of progress and his increasing monetary losses, Pushkin warns Teddy he can either kill McCall or not come home to Moscow.

In retaliation, Teddy and his men attack Home Mart and take Ralph and the workers of Home Mart hostage, threatening to kill them if he 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 McCall, but is shot in the leg. McCall tells Ralph to turn on the electricity after an exact time of 40 seconds. McCall sets up a number of chemicals 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 ad, identifying himself as "The Equalizer". He soon receives another plea for help and agrees to answer it. The film opens with a quote from Mark Twain: " “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.”

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