The Equalizer 2 is a blood-chilling journey into vigilantism. A sequel to the 2014 film The Equalizer and the first time Denzel Washington has appeared in a sequel to one of his films retired CIA black ops operative Robert McCall picks up where he leaves off. Now living in a Boston apartment complex, he works as a Lyft driver and helps out random folks in trouble.
One day his friend, Susan Plummer, from the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) flies to Brussels to investigate a murder-suicide; she is subsequently murdered by assailants. Outraged, McCall stops at nothing to hunt down the killers and get justice for his friend.
There are also a couple of subplots — one involving a Holocaust survivor named Sam Rubenstein who is on a lifelong quest to find a painting of a sister who got separated from him when they were sent to different concentration camps; Rubenstein is played by longtime actor Orson Bean. The other involves McCall’s young neighbor, Miles Whittaker, who has something of an artistic bent but is troubled. McCall takes Miles under his wing.
Overall, the movie’s pacing is way off. Things start interesting enough, but once Susan is murdered, the story slows to a drag until near the end. I think part of it is the blandish subplots — they take up a lot of airtime and seem really unnecessary.
The Equalizer 2 is an okay film, but not as focused as the original was. In my opinion, though, the ‘80s television series on which The Equalizer is based is far more compelling. The Equalizer’s run lasted four seasons on CBS, with English actor and singer Edward Woodward starring as McCall. While the series is just as violent as the movie versions, it has heart and a whole lot of flair. Washington’s McCall seems more like a robot at times. I would urge everyone to get their retro on and give Edward Woodward a shot instead.