It’s a risky business getting close to Charles Bronson. His wife, daughter and friends have been blown away in the first three installments of Death Wish. Now the vigilante is back to revenge the death of his girlfriend’s daughter.
What raises Death Wish 4 above the usual blowout is a semi-engaging script and sure pacing by veteran action director J. Lee Thompson.
As architect turned crusader, Paul Kersey (Bronson) is a curious blend of soft-spoken family man and detached seeker of justice. When he turns up the heat he does so with a measured, methodical passion as if it were his true calling in life to measure out justice in his corner of the world.
Bronson’s treatment of drug trafficking is akin to chopping off the weeds and thinking that they won’t grow back. It’s a good excuse for him to break out some heavy ammunition in pursuit of the two rival gangs who supposedly supply 90% of the cocaine in Los Angeles.