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The Hollywood Reporter
Ramping up his style to a more dynamic and elegant level than he’s achieved previously, Fuqua socks over the suspense and action but also takes the time for some quiet, even spare moments to emphasize the hero’s calm and apartness.
Willfully empty but wildly entertaining, The Equalizer stands out from its peers like a wolf among lapdogs, as Fuqua and Washington bring out the best in each other for the benefit of the audience.
McClatchy-Tribune News Service
Through it all, Washington’s stillness is emphasized, so much so that the film slows down just to make sure we appreciate the presence and the talent behind it.
Though overstretched and a trifle ponderous, this is a solidly acceptable star vehicle with more than enough righteous vengeance for an evening of classy thrills.
Fuqua steadily parades his big moments, and the movie works as unhinged spectacle. As a thriller it's less certain.
Ponderously overlong and not even half as much fun as it should have been, The Equalizer still gets a lot of mileage out of Washington’s unassailable star presence.
Not particularly sophisticated, the searing intensity of revenge in The Equalizer is still occasionally arresting (and even entertaining) in its stylish hard-R violence.
It's a dull film.
Denzel is so cool, so made of pure nails he can make even the most preposterous action scene feel thrilling. But Denzel's strength is also his weakness.
It's the sign of an empty, depressing experience when the only tension is over Bob's choice to use a power drill or a weed whacker for his next kill.
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