It's been a little while since we've had a Bruce Willis action movie we could really sink our teeth into. Director Eli Roth is hoping to change all of that with his upcoming remake of the Charles Bronson classic Death Wish, which arrives in theaters on November 22, 2017. This could be the Taken of Bruce Willis movies, according to Roth, which is a relatively bold statement, but one that fans of the 62-year-old actor likely hope is true.
Yahoo recently debuted the first photos of Bruce Willis in Death Wish and spoke with Eli Roth about the remake, which is when he made the comparison to Liam Neeson's Taken. But he also made it clear there are going to be some differences as well. Just like the rest of us who are more than a little tired of direct-to-DVD Bruce Willis, Roth wants to bring back the classic version of the actor that we all know and love. Here's what he had to say about it.
"We wanted to bring back that great, classic Bruce Willis we all know and love and just do a fun, badass update of a revered classic. I wanted to bring Bruce back to that Fifth Element, Unbreakable, Die Hard glory and have him craft another iconic performance, and I really think he did it. I mean I really think this can be his Taken. The fun is watching him go crazy and watching someone slowly move the moral goal post."
In case you aren't familiar with the 1974 version of Death Wish, which is based on the 1972 novel of the same name by Brian Garfield, the story follows mild-mannered New York City architect Paul Kersey. In this new version, the character is a surgeon instead of an architect. Kersey snaps after intruders break into his home and commit a brutal act of violence against his wife and daughter. He then becomes a vigilante, gunning down any criminal that crosses his path. According to Eli Roth, this is going to help make the movie differ from other action franchise like John Wick and Taken because Paul Kersey is just a regular guy. He has no actual training.
"What's interesting about Death Wish is it's not a CIA guy who's coming out of retirement, you know, he's not John Wick, he's not a professional assassin. He's a normal guy, he's a surgeon, he's a dad, he's never picked up a gun in his life. And with each kill as he gets closer to finding the people that did this to his family, he gains a new skill. He gets better and better and better. So by the end of the film he's really much closer to John McClane...The very things that make him a good surgeon are what eventually make him a great killer."
Yahoo notes that Bruce Willis actually learns how to handle a gun by watching YouTube videos in this version of Death Note. The photos, which you can check out for yourself below, showcase Willis in various locations seeking his revenge. The most interesting one has him making a finger gun while standing in the middle of the street in Chicago. Knowing how much he likes to rack up a body count in his other movies, we can only assume whoever that finger is pointing at has something ugly coming their way. Can this be one of the rare remakes that really works? Will we get the old Bruce Willis back? One can only hope at this point.