There have always been many films like Dead Man Down but this seems to stand out because of how more slow burning it seems compared to the more gung-ho revenge films. With a clever plot, good action scenes & great acting. Itâ??s hard not to enjoy Dead Man Down.
The story of DMD seems quite common and run-of-the-mill but it is presented in such a way that it seems different from the rest. The story follows a middle ranking gangster who plots his revenge against his boss who killed his daughter and wife. By just reading that, it could put you off the movie because it sounds very familiar, but just by learning it is directed by the guy who directed the original Swedish film The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo may just change your mind.
Dead Man Down is a different kind of revenge thriller because as you can tell from the outset, it is slow burning and puts the adrenaline fuelled action on hold. In most revenge films the action comes frequently and heavily. Films like The Punisher are constantly hitting the gas on action scenes, whereas DMD is more reserved and slower; easing into the action rather than pushing it at every opportunity. Sure it gets carried away with a dubstep slow motion action scene where bullets fly and bodies drop.
Niels Arden Oplev joins the ranks of Chan-wook Park in being a very successful foreign director who makes an English language debut. And while I didnâ??t manage to check out Stoker, I can confirm that Niels can make a great film outside of his comfort zone. And while TGWTDT is obviously a better film, DMD is a great film and you can tell it was a unique director at the helm due to how different it felt.
I was impressed with the stars of the film. Terrance Howard was the highlight for me but Noomi Rapace & Colin Farrell were great. Everyone hit the tone very well with few exceptions (Dominic Cooper). The action is great, with a few impressive set pieces (assassination building escape & final standoff) that look very stylised.
Overall, Dead Man Down is a very entertaining revenge thriller that is definitely worth seeing if you want to see fresh material to a tired sub-genre. Great acting, story, twists, story developments, action & set pieces.