Parent reviews for The Equalizer

Common Sense says

Denzel's TV-based action thriller is violent but stylish.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 16+
Based on 10 reviews

Kids say

age 14+
Based on 17 reviews
Adult Written bydarthsitkur January 19, 2015

uncle Denzel never fails :-)

the equalizer is a great flick with nonstop action and suspense that keeps you on the edge of your seat once it gets going as well as a great performance from uncle Denzel, and it is like taken in a way, but A LOT MORE BRUTAL and MUCH MORE VICIOUS lol
Parent Written byDan G. October 10, 2014

Too much objectionable material for children of any age

This movie is only so-so engaging or entertaining. However, it is not a movie for children because of the following content: There is pervasive gory violence (stabbings, shootings, strangling, torture) . There is a continuous stream of vulgar, crude, and profane language, the kind that would get a child kicked out of any school in America. There are racial insults and epitaphs. And there is sexual talk. Perhaps the worst problem of all is the glorification of violence as a legitimate way of solving problems with others. There is absolutely no good reason to expose children to this immorality.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Parent of a 11 and 15 year old Written byexitedreviewer September 27, 2014

Great Action

Three days ago, my 14-year old daughter told me that she wanted to see the Equalizer, because her favorite actress Chloe Grace Moretz (??) was in it. I took her to see it, and I found myself quite enjoying it. Parents should know that Moretz (she looks about 15/16) plays an underage prostitute, and is seen in skimpy clothing, although her profession is only alluded to. If you have a child over the age of 12, they can most likely handle the vague references. The biggest thing parents will probably have an issue with is the heavy violence. My daughter is a fan of The Walking Dead, and if your child watches that, this film is like a walk in the park. Overall, great preformances all around, and a stylish action flick! Definetely not what I was expecting

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Violence & scariness
Language
Adult Written byDanielB_1 December 31, 2014

Review of "The Equalizer": Mediocre, and NOT for Kids.

This movie has few objective creative merits. It's a very formulaic movie very much in the vein of Washington's "Man on Fire": Retired Former CIA/Special Forces killing machine runs afoul of local Russian mafia underworld scum, and proceeds to kill all of them, to the last. As a formulaic genre, it's hard to do wrong. But this one got it a bit wrong. Action was somewhat infrequent, but with over-the-top levels of brutality and gore. Pacing was slow and staccato. And, the baddies here pose no threat or challenge. McCall (Denzel Washington's character) wades through them unarmed, and indeed makes no attempt to arm himself, and with absolute confidence. He has the bad guys utterly outclassed. By a staggeringly large margin. It takes until the final scene before anyone gets a good shot in. As an action movie, the action proved rather infrequent, sporadic and unsatisfying, though more than making up for it in sheer brutality and gore. It's all or nothing: Total calm, or hyper violence. Weapons tended to be improvised: Washington's character doesn't actually touch a firearm throughout, save for a brief moment disarming a thug; rather, improvisation is key: as noted in other reviews: a shot-glass thrust through an eye socket; a barbed wire garrote, tree-trimming pruning shears thrust through a neck like a spear, a cork-screw thrust up through a baddie's chin and visible in his mouth, a power-drill to the nape of the neck delivered from behind; The movie's two kingpins are respectively dispatched with a slow succession of pneumatic nail-gun shots, and electrocuted in the shower. The after-effects thereof are more visible and palpable than in most "shoot-em-ups", with thugs dying very slow gruesome deaths, or reviewing photos of the aftermath in trying to track down Washington's character. One thug is beaten to death by the chief antagonist, who later terrorizes and interrogates a prostitute before graphically strangling her to death… over her pleading, a scene that oddly lacked the emotional resonance expected. There is much non-lethal violence as well. While no nudity was present, there was more than enough profanity all around: loads of F-bombs, and occasional, graphic discussion of the the Russian mafia pimp's business, and a number of their descriptive and insulting comments with regard to the nature of the prostitutes' work was far beyond any language that any child should hear: such as one Russian pimp denying knowing a particular prostitute, insisting, "but I'm sure she's great at ____ing ____." The entire scene, the most violent in the movie, is rife with similar references to the quality of the prostitutes' genitals, "____y", and mention of a particular lady's youth permitting her to be marketed as a "virgin." This crassness is probably the worst material in the movie: out of bounds for any child. As noted elsewhere, the movie is paced very slowly, with various minor incidents in McCall's work & social life occupying a great deal of screen time: lunchtime conversations, dinners at a local diner, a company softball game, etc. There are also two other minor story arcs in which McCall handles some other minor bad guys: A robber who held up the home improvement store where he works, and two corrupt police officers running a protection money racket.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Language
Adult Written byjoshua martinez October 4, 2014

16 and up.

the equalizer is a awesome thriller movie stars with denzel washington but this thriller movie is only for older adults and parents you need to know that the equalizer has bloody intense violence strong language used and some drinking used such as vodka.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Language
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Adult Written byB-KMastah October 12, 2014

Stylish and cool, but overlong and forgettable.

I saw this mostly because of its actors. I didn't know how I would react because Fuqua's Olympus Has Fallen was terrible, but I really like Denzel Washington and Chloe Grace Moretz, and they were the best part of this. Washington is very convincing and as always has a great screen presence, but I just wish that Moretz was in it more since she has those things as well. One thing that I wasn't expecting was the really stylish direction of the film and the over-the-top nature that accompanies most of it. There are some kills in this movie that are pretty graphic and while it starts out pretty cool, it does become excessive, but in quantity, not necessarily content. The climax begins to feel like a music video combined with a video game or something and while that starts out pretty sweet, it doesn't really know when to end. In that way, the climax is like the entire movie itself: its beginning is strong, but it goes on for too long. The overall film feels obligated to include convoluted and extraneous subplots that drag the movie down considerably, bringing what should be around a 95-minute runtime to 131 minutes. The comic relief works a bit, but it still isn't enough to maintain one's attention for what could be almost half an hour shorter. Also, in reality, one of the main characters exists solely to give the protagonist a motivation to do stuff. This is one of those movies that you see for a matinee because it was playing at the right time, get some intermediate enjoyment out of it, and then forget that it ever existed. If only filmmakers knew that what might seem important to them isn't even close to important to the rest of the viewers. But stylish and ironically pretty violence is always a plus. 6.4/10, okay, one thumb down, average, etc.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Language
Parent of a 9 and 13 year old Written byjasminesmom September 29, 2014

Great Movie - not for kids

Watched this with my husband this weekend. I will say that it started off a little slow, but once it got moving, we really enjoyed it. There is prostitution and violence.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Violence & scariness
Parent of a 13 and 14 year old Written byMrsKeys2u October 9, 2014

Very "Taken"-ish

I love Denzel, but to me this movie seemed a lot like the Taken movies.... He does a phenomenal job as usual, but please note that this is a VERY violent movie. Not good at all for small kids/preteens.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Adult Written byDarkAgentE April 19, 2018

If John Wick was a black guy.

The Equalizer is a brutal action film with a great performance from Denzel Washington, a pretty simple plot, and brutal action. When I say brutal, I mean brutal dude. This film is basically John Wick, but with a Wise, old, black guy as the main hero. The Equalizer is a great, intense, gritty, suspenseful, and brutal action film that'll have you on the edge of your seat the entire time.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Language
Parent Written bySissylee33 June 25, 2018

ABSOLUTELY LOVE this Movie - but NOT for the little ones

Looked at the general review under "sex", as I always do for movies. My kids are a bit older, so the violence is not usually my issue - Older children need to know about the violence in the world, we must address these issues with them as parents because they Will learn about it soon enough. MY ISSUE is when I am surprised by sexual content or specific use of vulgar language...a young prostitute relaying what her pimp told her as he threatened cutting another girl's throat, "He said a whore that F**** but does not speak might be worth twice as much." AND this same pimp talking to Denzel's character saying, "She must be good at sucking the c*** ' - I like to know these things up front, such a crude and vulgar reference to women is NOT a seed you want to plant in growing boys (or girls for that matter.) That being said, the movie itself was Awesome for older audiences! We love Denzel Washington and, despite the violence, it is nice to see justice served without all the red tape involved that let's the criminal get out in the end to do it again. For all of you who tout "Violence is Not the answer," I say to take a history class. The human race has always been prone to a level of violence, and most people won't be persuaded by your pleading words to do what is right - ASK any victim of a violent crime. We need more people like the Equalizer in the World fighting for the innocent (AND, by the way, he treats the young prostitute with compassion, NOT judgement - THAT is a wonderful lesson in itself)...a Feel Good Film with a happy ending, perfect way to end a long day in the real world.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models