The best re­venge films ever

Re­venge has been a con­stant theme in films.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - FRONT PAGE - By BARRY KOLT­NOW

THIS is a spe­cial time of the year in Hollywood, when we ex­press our thanks for our bless­ings and ex­act vengeance on the peo­ple who wronged us.

We can thank the Thanks­giv­ing hol­i­day for the good feel­ings as­so­ci­ated with the for­mer, and Dwayne “Don’t Call Me The Rock” John­son’s new re­venge movie Faster for the lat­ter.

Well, it’s not re­ally fair to blame John­son for what we’re about to do. Af­ter all, the re­venge theme has been a con­stant in lit­er­a­ture and film for as long as peo­ple have been read­ing books and watch­ing movies.

Faster, star­ring the wrestler-turned-ac­tor as a man bent on aveng­ing the death of his brother, has in­spired us to think about a pop­u­lar movie genre.

Here is a count­down of the 30 best re­venge movies of all time:

30. The Ital­ian Job – Al­though some see this as a two-hour Mini Cooper com­mer­cial, it’s still a pretty good ac­tion yarn.

29. The Pa­triot – If you ever won­dered if Mel Gib­son’s film ca­reer had a theme, think re­venge. This will not be the first time you see Mel on this list, and we even left out a few.

28. The Karate Kid – Those nasty bul­lies in the skele­ton cos­tumes were scary, but they were waxed on and waxed off.

27. Four Broth­ers – Four guys who don’t look alike re­spond like a fam­ily to avenge the murder of their mother.

26. Ghost – Whoopi won an Os­car, but Pa­trick Swayze got even with the guy who ar­ranged his murder.

25. Mys­tic River – In Clint East­wood’s bril­liant film, the les­son learned was that you should be care­ful about the re­venge you wish for ...

24. The Crow – The late Bran­don Lee lit­er­ally came back from the dead to get his re­venge.

23. Sleep­ers – A group of young­sters makes a ter­ri­ble mis­take, pays dearly for that mis­take and then grows up to ex­act re­venge.

22. The Vir­gin Spring – Swedish di­rec­tor Ing­mar Bergman’s 1960 film won the for­eign lan­guage Os­car.

21. V For Vendetta – Not a lot of peo­ple saw it, but those who did thought it was one of the coolest re­venge movies ever made.

20. Straw Dogs – If you’re old enough to re­mem­ber it, you’ll re­mem­ber how shock­ing it was to see Dustin Hoff­man get so vi­o­lent.

19. Cape Fear – The next time your daugh­ter brings home a guy you don’t like, re­mem­ber this film. It could be worse.

18. Des­per­ado – This is An­to­nio Ban­deras the way we like to see him in movies – not in those Spy Kids flicks.

17. Ma­chete – Vet­eran char­ac­ter ac­tor Danny Trejo got a chance to be an aveng­ing hero and a lead­ing man (he kissed Jes­sica Alba) in this re­cent clas­sic (if you ac­cept it as a spoof).

16. Trad­ing Places – I’ve seen it 10 times and still don’t fully un­der­stand how they got those two old goats at the end of the movie, but it was great.

15. Ne­vada Smith – You might not have seen this 1966 film, but it had Steve McQueen and a re­venge theme. It was awe­some.

14. Mu­nich – The Is­raelis taste re­venge for the mur­ders at the Olympics, but re­venge of­ten had a bit­ter taste.

13. Mad Max – A very young Mel Gib­son plays a fu­tur­is­tic cop who hunts down the killers of his wife.

12. The Sting – Robert Red­ford didn’t get the re­venge he wanted for the death of a close friend, but he took what he could get.

11. Kill Bill: Vol.1 and 2 – Hell hath no fury like a bride scorned.

10. Man On Fire – Den­zel is Dakota’s body­guard, and he takes that re­spon­si­bil­ity very se­ri­ously.

9. Re­venge Of The Nerds – Come on; the word re­venge is in the ti­tle. Very re­al­is­tic. In real life, the nerds got their re­venge by run­ning the world.

8. Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan – Ri­cardo Mon­tal­ban was re­ally, re­ally an­gry that his new car didn’t con­tain Corinthian leather.

7. Car­rie – You might think twice about teas­ing that shy young girl in high school gym class.

6. The Count Of Monte Cristo – Nov­el­ist Alexan­der Du­mas prac­ti­cally in­vented the re­venge genre. The book has been filmed count­less times; this 2002 ver­sion was pretty good.

5. Brave­heart – It’s Mel again, this time all done up for Hal­loween.

4. The Out­law Josey Wales – Of all the Clint East­wood re­venge West­erns ( Hang ’Em High and High Plains Drifter are two oth­ers), this is my favourite.

3. The Bourne tril­ogy – Once he fig­ured out who he was, he went af­ter the peo­ple who made him who he was.

2. Glad­i­a­tor – Rus­sell Crowe was a lit­tle in­tense when the movie started. Imag­ine his rage when the evil em­peror mur­dered his fam­ily.

1. Death Wish – For­get the four se­quels. Re­mem­ber only the orig­i­nal. It struck a chord when it came out in 1974 that still res­onates.

Iden­ti­fy­ing one of the mug­gers has be­come one of the most fre­quently asked movie trivia ques­tions of all time. – The Orange County Reg­is­ter/McClatchy-Tribune In­for­ma­tion Ser­vices

Get­ting even: Dwayne John­son is a man bent on aveng­ing the death of his brother

in Faster.

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