Punisher: War Zone

F is for Frank Castle

frank castleFrank Castle aka The Punisher isn’t exactly a good guy, but you could say he does bad things for good reasons. Basically he kills people, but they are people who are murderers or rapists and who have often escaped justice so Frank dishes his own brand of justice. Frank is a vigilante who does whatever he can to take on criminals and his history in the military means not only is he comfortable in using a wide variety of weapons but he is also a tactical genius and is a master of martial arts.

Frank Castle is definitely an anti-hero but that’s what makes him so compelling. The first time I came across Frank was in The Punisher (2004) which I thought was an OK film and it got me interested in the character (have to say I love the scene where Frank has a bow and arrow), then I watched Punisher: War Zone (2008) which was brutal but brilliant. Now Frank is in the latest series of Daredevil which I’ve yet to watch but I can’t wait to see what he’s like in it – fun fact, I have only watch the first episode of the first series of Daredevil and don’t really care much about Daredevil as a character but the fact that Punisher is in the second series really makes me want to catch up.

I’ve now read some of The Punisher comics, mainly the series by Nathan Edmondson and Mitch Gerads which I loved. I love the art style and it was a great insight into Frank’s character and the fact he does care about people even though he tries hard not to. He sees things as very black and white – you’re either good or bad and he treats you accordingly, he can be terrifying but there’s something strangely reassuring about Frank Castle.

To get an introduction to Frank Castle, one of the best places you can go is watch Dirty Laundry, a fan-made short film that is really great.

L is for Lexi Alexander

MV5BMTczNjQ5ODE1NV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwODkzNDcwMg@@._V1_SX214_CR0,0,214,317_AL_Lexi Alexander is a director who’s directed a pretty great comic book adaptation in Punisher: War Zone (2008). I didn’t know that much about the character of Frank Castle/The Punisher when I’d watched it, I’d seen the other Punisher film from 2004 so had a basic understanding but that’s about it. Now I’m reading the current Punisher comic by Nathan Edmondson and Mitch Gerads and feel that Lexi Alexander made a great film about a great character. I point to Punisher: War Zone when people say women can’t make superhero or action movies because it’s an obvious example that they can and those people are stupid.

The thing that has made me respect and like Lexi Alexander so much is that I’ve recently started to follow her on Twitter. I love how she talks about gender and race in Hollywood and the structure of Hollywood with institutions like the DGA which “normal people” wouldn’t know much about or how they work. I find her thoughts about piracy fascinating and what she thinks about women filmmakers in this industry that isn’t always helpful or kind to women is eye-opening. Her Twitter handle is @Lexialex and you should totally hit the follow button.

One of my film-watching goals this year was to watch more films written and/or directed by women so I’m definitely going to be checking out more of Lexi Alexander’s work over the next few months.