Movie Review | The Equalizer 3 (2023)

In The Equalizer 3, the covert crime-fighting game gets taken to Southern Italy in this highly anticipated third and final installment of The Equalizer franchise. Director Antoine Fuqua (Olympus has Fallen, 2014) once again teams up with the talented Denzel Washington to deliver a thrilling and action-packed experience that falls back on Washington’s cold, calculating gaze and awesome training as a retired special ops field agent that we just can’t get enough of.

As local crime bosses in Southern Italy begin to exert force, we find "Robert McCall" (Washington) recovering from an injury and at a low point in life. From the very beginning, the film grabs the viewers' attention with its stunning cinematography, capturing the picturesque landscapes of Italy. The vibrant colors and breathtaking scenery serve as a stark contrast to the dark and sinister underworld that Robert McCall finds himself in. The visual juxtaposition adds to the tension and heightens the stakes, making every scene visually captivating.

Neverminding the gorgeous settings, Washington once again proves why he is one of Hollywood's finest actors. His portrayal of Robert McCall is superb, effortlessly navigating the complexities of a character who exhibits both pain and unwavering determination to push forward. Washington's commanding presence on screen brings an unparalleled intensity, making the audience feel fully invested in his quest for justice. 

The writing team of Richard Wenk, Michael Sloan, and Richard Lindheim were the writers for previous installments and have here come together again to craft a compelling and tightly woven narrative that keeps viewers on the edge of their seats, despite somewhat of a slow post-opening segment where we learn of McCall’s injury and his means to get well. The script manages to balance intense action sequences with long-running exchanges in the interests of character development, providing depth to both the protagonist and supporting characters. It is refreshing to see a film that delves deeper into the motivations and emotions of its characters, elevating The Equalizer 3 from a standard action flick to a thought-provoking thriller. "Emma Collins" (Dakota Fanning - Man of Fire, 2004, and War of the Worlds, 2005) plays a key role from the previous film. Pay close attention to the final scenes. 

Antoine Fuqua's direction gives optimal moments for supporting characters to strut their stuff. One of the film's major strengths lies in its supporting cast. The ensemble of actors, including Andrea Scarduzio (Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning - Part 1, 2023) plays the mob boss. Not to be forgotten is "Dr. Enzo Arisio" (Remo Girone - Ford v. Ferrari, 2019). These and others deliver captivating performances that add depth and complexity to the story. They effortlessly convey the emotional turmoil and vulnerability of their respective characters, further enhancing the overall viewing experience. From the adrenaline-pumping fight scenes to the quiet moments of introspection, Fuqua keeps a firm grasp on every aspect of the film. His meticulous attention to detail is evident in the seamless integration of the action sequences with the emotional beats of the story. 

The Equalizer 3 showcases some exhilarating and expertly choreographed action sequences that leave audiences breathless. Each confrontation is meticulously crafted, showcasing the brutal efficiency and resourcefulness of McCall. The fight scenes are expectedly dynamic, fast-paced, and gritty, making every punch and kick feel visceral and impactful. 

The attention to detail in the action sequences is commendable, highlighting the dedication of the filmmakers to deliver the highest caliber of entertainment. In addition to its action-packed nature, The Equalizer 3 also explores themes of loyalty, justice, and redemption. The film raises questions surrounding morality and the lengths one is willing to go to protect their loved ones. These thought-provoking elements add an extra layer of depth to the narrative, ensuring that the film resonates long after the credits roll. 

From its exceptional performances to its gripping storyline, every aspect of the movie comes together to create a heart-stopping cinematic experience. Antoine Fuqua once again proves why he is a force to be reckoned with.