|Formats:||18 DVD, Blu-ray|
|Starring:||James Coburn, Kris Kristofferson, David Paymer, Gregg Henry, Bill Duke, Maria Bello, Mel Gibson, Mel Gibson, Deborah Kara Unger, William Devane|
|Genres:||Action/Adventure, Drama, Thriller|
|Studio:||WARNER HOME VIDEO|
|Collections:||Best of LOVEFiLM Instant, England vs USA|
|Run time:||1 hour 37 minutes|
|Rental release:||20 Sep 1999|
Most helpful review
Ruthless actionBy a customer from Northern Ireland , 01 Mar 2004
[Highly rated reviewer]Mel Gibson plays Porter, the Man with One Name, a thief who is literally shot in the back by his partners and left for dead. As if that wasn't insult enough they take $70,000 that was his cut of the job. Payback is Porter's obsessive pursuit of his money.
Porter is an amoral thief who will hurt (or more likely) kill anyone who stands in the way of what he wants. Yet by focusing on his principles (he ?only? wants the $70,000) and showing him hurting either those more wicked than himself or anonymous random victims he is presented as a kind of hero.
What is compelling is the single-minded ruthlessness of the character who does exactly one imagines would have to be done if you actually wanted to take on a criminal syndicate. Forget the noble hero who won?t shoot his opponent in the back, we all know that in reality he wouldn?t last five minutes. If Porter finds his man on the ground he gives him a good kicking to make sure he stays there. He kills without compunction subjecting moral considerations to the needs of his mission. It is this self-consistent brutality that makes the film work. Only a man like Porter would get into such a situation and survive.
The film is peopled with a gallery of vile characters who are each portrayed to a t. Mario Bello plays the hooker with a heart perfectly and Greg Henry as Val Resnick is a monster pure and simple, but it is the triumvirate of Carter (William Devane), Fairfax (James Coburn) and Bronson (Kris Kristofferson) who collectively give Porter a foe of suitable gravitas and menace. Throw in Lucy Liu?s unforgettable dominatrix and you have quite a concoction.
If you ever wished you could throw restraint to the wind and do whatever it takes then Porter is your man.
Probably the only flat note is a rather cheesy voice over performed by Gibson in a stereotypically gruff voice but since it smacks of self-parody it doesn?t distract overly.
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Payback - Blu-Ray VersionBy DaveCheltenham (17 reviews) from Cheltenham , 21 Apr 2010Both the original and Directors Cut versions are on the Blu-Ray version along with many extras.
I have already send the DVD version so was impressed with the extra detail/quality on Blu-Ray but that said, I never liked the bleached blue look which was to give it the so called grittiness of a B&W film although I liked the content of this version of the film and would give it 4 stars.
On the Directors Cut, they had taken the original negatives and although processed, gave, to me at least, a much more satisfying image but a different more violent story and an almost entirely different 3rd act which didnt seem to fit with the rest of this version and had the feeling, like on a lot of films, they had run out on money and wanted to get it over very quickly. 2 ½ stars from me for this version.
From the very comprehensive extras, the studio thought the same in that the Directors Cut would not be commercial and made different 3rd act plus making some other parts of the film less violent. These extras were also quite a revelation on the politics of film making and every credit to the studio for giving the facilities to the director to edit and show his version in the end as he was originally sacked. The 3rd act of the originally released film was done by a different director.
Dont take my word for it so I recommend renting/buying the Blu-Ray version to see for yourselves.
Decent but rather ridiculous filmBy a customer from Farnborough , 26 Feb 2010In general, this was a bit slow and boring, but still had enough interest to keep you watching.
The biggest issue I had with the film was constantly wondering why Gibson's character would want to put himself through so much for so little.
I doubt I would bother to watch it again, but I am not too sorry that I saw it.
Decent FilmBy a customer from London , 03 Jan 2010After watching htis film i realised that i had seen it before...all in all a decent film
paybackBy movies (64 reviews) from Buckie , 10 Nov 2009A good thriller, full of action, I always enjoy watching Mel Gibson, but this was not one of my favourite Mel Gibson films.
GreatBy a customer from Solihull , 09 Feb 2009In my top 5 movies. This is just great from the opening montage to the finale. A really gritty, tough thriller with some stylish cinematography.