If you love the Caped Crusader, you love movies like The Dark Knight that feature Batman in an avenging role as he attempts to right the wrongs of Gotham City and the world. Batman is nothing but a vigilante in a costume and he may be the best of those out for revenge, but he is by no means the only one. Here are six other vigilante movies that you will want to see, even if they aren’t up to the level of The Dark Knight.
“Death Wish” (1974)
New York City architect Paul Kersey (Charles Bronson) is a liberal who believes that poor economic conditions cause criminal behavior and that if society took care of the financially downtrodden, crime would be reduced substantially. However, when he returns home from work to find his wife has been murdered and his daughter has been raped, he changes his stance. He becomes a one-man vigilante squad and looks to hand out his own kind of justice as he searches for violent criminals.
“Falling Down” (1993)
William Foster (Michael Douglas) is an unemployed defense worker who is trying to get home for his daughter’s birthday. As he gets caught in dangerous parts of Los Angeles and gets stuck in interminable traffic, he seems to come into contact with all of society’s ills and he decides he’s not just going to sit back and live with it. He’s going to take matters into his own hands and teach lessons whenever he can.
“Death Sentence” (1997)
Nick Hume (Kevin Bacon) is a successful businessman with a wife and a family. When he returns home from a hockey game with his son, they stop at a gas station to refuel. As his son purchases a refreshment, gang members rob the store and murder the boy. When Hume learns that a prosecution of the criminal can only result in a 2-year sentence, he decides to hand out his own form of justice.
“Gran Torino” (2008)
Walt Kowalski (Clint Eastwood) is a hard-bitten Korean War veteran who is living next door to an Asian family. Thao (Bee Vang), a young teenager living there, is under pressure from family members involved in gang life to steal Kowalski’s prized possession, a 1972 Gran Torino. Kowalski stops the robbery and also helps Thao get on the straight and narrow by correctly identifying his villainous relatives as the main reason behind his fall and Kowalski sets on them so they won’t influence Thao any longer.
“Walking Tall” (1973)
This is the story of the southern sheriff who carried a big stick. Sheriff Buford Pusser (Joe Don Baker) is tired of all the punks and criminals who are making life miserable in his small town. Pusser takes it upon himself to punish and get rid of the troublemakers and make his town safe. It costs Pusser his family and puts his own life at risk, but he gets the job done.
“The Substitute” (1996)
Jonathan Shale (Tom Berenger) is a mercenary who returns home to Florida after a failed mission in Cuba. His girlfriend Jane Hetzko (Diane Venora) is a history teacher at a Miami high school that is overrun with dangerous gangs. When Hetzko gets her knee broken by a gang member, Shale goes undercover as a substitute teacher and learns that the school has become a hotbed for criminal activity and drug distribution.