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Reuniting for the fourth time with director Antoine Fuqua (Training Day, The Equalizer, The Magnificent Seven), Denzel Washington reprises his role as Robert McCall, former CIA agent and avid reader gone rogue in pursuit of justice. This time, he’s moonlighting as a Lyft driver, and saving little girls who have been kidnapped by their abusive fathers, an intern who has been raped by her colleagues, and his neighbour Miles (Moonlight’s Ashton Sanders), art school almost-dropout who’s fallen in with the wrong crowd. Things get personal for the equal opportunities vigilante when his ex-colleague (and only friend), Melissa Leo’s Susan, gets stitched up in Belgium.
There are things to enjoy. McCall has excellent taste in books (we see him reading Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Proust’s In Search of Lost Time; another plot point involves Richard Wright’s Native Son), and there’s wonderful, watchable chemistry between the young Sanders and a consistently magnetic Washington. Yet the film flip-flops between B-movie silliness that sees McCall setting his stopwatch and pulverising the bodies and egos of a group of finance bros in 29 seconds flat (“I expect a five-star rating”, he clips after breaking a man’s hand), and po-faced missives about the two different flavours of agony (“pain that hurts” and “pain that alters”). A climactic fight that takes place in the eye of a hurricane is appropriately silly but lacks a sense of fun.
Source: The Guardian
Keyword: The Equalizer 2 review – B-movie silliness mars Denzel Washington’s returning vigilante | Action and adventure films