Re: RARA-AVIS: Payback

From: William Denton (
Date: 22 Mar 2003

On 21 March 2003, Mark Sullivan wrote:

: However, to clarify my points, it's wasn't so much for me that Mel
: Gibson was a "nice" bad guy -- you're right, he wasn't -- but that he
: was a likeable bad guy. His wisecracks and constant smiling added a
: comic caper element to the movie that seemed misplaced to me. I'm not
: saying I don't love many comic capers, but that I found Payback's tone
: wildly uneven, swinging from comic caper to dark crime. To me it seemed
: obvious that the film had been grafted together.

I'm with Mr. Sullivan on this one. I haven't seen Robert Duvall as Parker, or the other adaptations, but Lee Marvin always seemed perfect to me, and that's how I imagine Parker (and he's very close to Stark's description). Mel Gibson just ain't right for it, and the whole movie pales against the first one.

Don't miss the book. You may know the plot, but that leaves everything else, and it's sweet stuff. I bet giving the first few chapters to a young person, who's worked through all the mysteries at the library and wants more, would turn them into a hardboiled fan for life. It would have done it for me.


William Denton : Toronto, Canada : : Caveat lector.

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