Conclusion: For those who don't mind a bit of crime and violence, 'Harry Brown' is certainly worth seeing, especially for fans of Michael Caine, who seems unable to deliver a bad performance (except perhaps in 'Beyond the Poseidon Adventure.'). However, I do question whether I will be wanting repeat viewings, once seems enough.
Excerpt: Harry Brown loves to punish the audience with a vicious, brutal display of violence. These revenge thrillers need to establish the criminals as sadistic in order for the vigilante hero to work as such, yet this film goes further. The film opens on two kids on a small motorcycle driving through a park, when they begin shooting at a mother with her child in a stroller.
Excerpt: The Film Vigilante films are typically going to be compared to Death Wish , and there is little getting round that fact. But with Harry Brown - starring Michael Caine in the title role - this is probably a fair and apt comparison. Both tell the tale of former military veterans who are pushed way beyond the typical breaking point, where the "hero" takes the law into his own hands racking up a body count, whilst the viewer is left with the question of whether it was really...
Excerpt: The concept of vigilantism is commonly associated with the homemade superhero craze. It's easy to forget that an individual with a vengeance doesn't have to have a cheesy name or be plain old deranged, but Harry Brown is as sane and simple as they come. Further pushing him into the world of the raw and deeply passionate is that he’s played by Michael Caine. This guy is the quintessential grandpa. He's Batman's Alfred for Christ's sake! But not here.
Excerpt: There’s a deceptive gravitas to the British vigilante thriller Harry Brown that some are bound to mistake for class—or even truth—in the way it grapples with one man’s violent stand against societal decay. Much of that is owed to Michael Caine, an actor of such rare dignity and stature that audiences are naturally willing to follow him anywhere, including into the heart of truly risible material.
Conclusion: I enjoyed Daniel Barber's Harry Brown . Probably not as much as I wanted to, but seeing Michael Caine in action is always a treat. The Blu-ray disc herein reviewed, courtesy of Lions Gate Home Entertainment UK, looks and sounds good. Also, there is a hilarious audio commentary on it with Mr. Caine, director Barber and producer Kris Thykier. If you have the time, give it a chance. RECOMMENDED. Did you find this review helpful?
Summary: Ever-watchable, Michael Caine enriches damn near everything he appears in, and he elevates this grim vigilante-fest from pretty darn good to essential viewing. Not for the squeamish, Harry Brown is chilling from its kinetic and brutal opening frames right through to the increasingly explosive violence inflicted by both Brown and the truly horrible council estate scumbags he pits himself against.
Excerpt: "Harry Brown" is an exceptionally made film, but the revenge takes too long, drawn out to a point where the comeuppance just doesn't match the build-up. There are great depictions of drug-dealer dwellings and troubled youth, creating a genuine sense of discomfort and distress. Invariably such a setup brings violence, including a curiously riotous ending, but digitised blood spurts just don't have the same impact as traditional cinema wounds.