YMMV / The Punisher (2004)

  • Awesome Music:
  • Better on DVD: The "Extended Cut" release; several scenes are added in that actually improve upon the film's theatrical cut and flesh out a few plot holes - most specifically, scenes with Frank's former partner, who is revealed to have sold Frank out to Howard Saint, which leads to the Castle family being massacred. (The "Extended Cut" of the film is also the one shown when the film plays on the FX network.)
  • Critical Dissonance: The movie was not well-received by critics, sitting at 29% on Rotten Tomatoes. However, it has an audience rating of 63%.
  • Cult Classic: The movie didn't exactly crush it at the box office and nets some derision from comic-book purists, but is well-liked among action buffs for being a throwback to gritty, oldschool shoot-em-up flicks at a time when The Matrix copycats were still all the rage.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Harry Heck. A Johnny Cash-esque, Affably Evil hired killer who sings the tune to Frank Castle's life. Then he dies one chase later. The character made quite an impression on audiences however, and is often mentioned as one of the most memorable scenes of the movie. Keep in mind Harry Heck was nothing but a named Mook in the comics, who appears and dies in one page.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: John Travolta's character kills Frank's family as payback for the death of his son. Five years later Travolta's son died.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: "My father and mother send their regards" becomes funnier after the Red Wedding in Game of Thrones.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Frank. Prior to going all out on the Saints, he works in the shadows to sabotage their operations discretely. He also manipulates events surrounding Howard Saint's wife and best friend to make it look as though they're having an affair with each other, driving Howard to murder them both. Once the mobster is thoroughly defeated, Frank reveals the scheme to him as one final humiliation before he sends his enemy to a fiery grave.
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