The vigilante film is a film genre in which the protagonist or protagonists engage in vigilante behavior, taking the law into their own hands. Vigilante films are usually revenge films in which the legal system fails protagonists, leading them to become vigilantes. The vigilante film has in recent years often crossed over with the Superhero genre, due to character origin stories frequently involving an injustice having been committed against them.

History

In United States cinema, vigilante films gained prominence during the 1970s with "touchstones" like Death Wish and Dirty Harry, both of which received multiple sequels. The 1974 film Death Wish has been described as officially starting the genre, causing many cheap imitations and knockoffs such as Vigilante and Vigilante Force, with the most financially successful being 1980's The Exterminator.[1]

The Los Angeles Times reported, "Vigilante vengeance was the cinematic theme of the decade, flourishing in the more respectable precincts of the new American cinema even as it fueled numerous exploitation flicks," referring to Taxi Driver as a respectable example of the genre.[2] It reported in 2009 that such films were making a comeback after "the comparatively prosperous and peaceable 1990s", with examples like Walking Tall (2004), Death Sentence (2007) and Law Abiding Citizen (2009).[2]

List of films

This list related to film, television, or video is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items. (October 2021)

Pre-1965 vigilante films

Film Year Ref.
Tracked by Bloodhounds; or, A Lynching at Cripple Creek 1904
The White Caps 1905 [3]
The Birth of a Nation 1915
Judex 1916
The Adventures of Robin Hood 1938 [4]
The Ox-Bow Incident 1943 [5]
The Big Heat 1953 [6]
The Bravados 1958 [7]
The Virgin Spring 1960 [8]
Yojimbo 1961 [9]
Treasure of the Silver Lake 1962 [10]
Youth of the Beast 1963 [11]

Late 60s-mid 80s vigilante film wave

Film Year Ref.
The Sons of Katie Elder 1965 [12]
Django 1966 [13]
The Elusive Avengers 1967 [14]
The Born Losers 1967 [15]
The Bride Wore Black 1968
The Wild Bunch 1969 [16]
Cold Sweat 1970 [17]
Joe 1970
Ned Kelly 1970 [18]
Violent City 1970
Billy Jack 1971 [19]
Chrome and Hot Leather 1971
Dirty Harry 1971 [2]
Straw Dogs 1971
Shaft 1971 [20]
Execution Squad 1972
Ulzana's Raid 1972 [16]
Female Prisoner 701: Scorpion 1972 [21]
The No Mercy Man 1973 [22]
Coffy 1973
Milano trema: la polizia vuole giustizia 1973
Magnum Force 1973
Revolver 1973
Robin Hood 1973 [23]
Thriller – A Cruel Picture 1973
Tony Arzenta 1973
Walking Tall 1973 [24]
What Have They Done to Your Daughters? 1974
Death Wish 1974 [2]
Street Law 1974
Foxy Brown 1974
Three the Hard Way 1974
The Street Fighter 1974
The Black Six 1974 [25]
Black Belt Jones 1974 [26]
Act of Vengeance 1974 [27]
The Black Gestapo 1975
Syndicate Sadists 1975
The Common Man 1975
Kidnap Syndicate 1975
Manhunt in the City 1975
The "Human" Factor 1975
The Big Racket 1976
Taxi Driver 1976 [2]
Colt 38 Special Squad 1976
Vigilante Force 1976
Zebra Force 1976
The Enforcer 1976
Lipstick 1976
Strange Shadows in an Empty Room 1976
Trial by Combat 1976
Keoma 1976 [28]
The Outlaw Josey Wales 1976 [29]
Mad Dog Morgan 1976 [30]
An Average Little Man 1977
Double Game 1977
Rolling Thunder 1977 [31]
I Spit on Your Grave 1978 [23]
A Dangerous Toy 1979
Mad Max 1979 [32]
Defiance 1980
The Exterminator 1980 [2]
Ms. 45 1981
Lovely But Deadly 1981 [33]
Death Wish II 1982
Krodham 1982
1990: The Bronx Warriors 1982 [34]
Burst City 1983 [35]
The Graduates of Malibu High 1983
The Star Chamber 1983
Sudden Impact 1983
Escape from the Bronx 1983 [36]
Vigilante 1983 [16]
Alley Cat 1984
The Toxic Avenger 1984 [37]
Exterminator 2 1984
Savage Streets 1984
Streets of Fire 1984 [38]
Blastfighter 1984 [39]
Naked Vengeance 1985
The Last Dragon 1985 [40]
Thou Shalt Not Kill... Except 1985 [41]

Late 1980s to the present

Film Year Ref.
The Gladiator 1986 [23]
The Seventh Curse 1986 [42]
Man on Fire 1987
Rolling Vengeance 1987 [23]
Miami Connection 1987 [43]
I'm Gonna Git You Sucka 1988 [44]
Pumpkinhead 1988 [45]
Traxx 1988 [46]
Batman 1989
The Punisher 1989 [47]
Darkman 1990
Total Recall 1990 [48]
Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves 1991 [49]
Falling Down 1993 [23]
The Crow 1994 [23]
Dark Angel: The Ascent 1994 [50]
Mr. Payback: An Interactive Movie 1995
Blood and Donuts 1995 [51]
One Tough Bastard 1995 [52]
Rumble in the Bronx 1995
A Time to Kill 1996 [2]
Eye for an Eye 1996 [2]
Night Hunter 1996 [53]
Spawn 1997 [54]
Blade 1998 [55]
The Boondock Saints 1999 [24]
Shaft 2000
Faust: Love of the Damned 2000 [56]
Collateral Damage 2002 [57]
Spider-Man 2002 [58]
Kill Bill 2003 [23]
A Man Apart 2003 [16]
The Hebrew Hammer 2003 [59]
Hellboy 2004
Man on Fire 2004 [60]
Walking Tall 2004 [2]
The Punisher 2004 [16]
Bad Reputation 2005 [61]
Batman Begins 2005 [24]
Constantine 2005 [62]
V for Vendetta 2005 [24]
Munich 2005 [16]
Four Brothers 2005 [16]
Hard Candy 2006 [63]
Death Note 2006
The Brave One 2007 [2]
Death Sentence 2007 [2]
Urban Justice 2007
El Muerto 2007 [64]
The Dark Knight 2008 [60]
Taken 2008 [23]
Gran Torino 2008 [24]
The Horseman 2008
Gutterballs 2008 [65]
The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day 2009
Defendor 2009 [66]
Law Abiding Citizen 2009 [2]
Harry Brown 2009 [24]
Inglourious Basterds 2009 [2]
Watchmen 2009 [23]
13 Assassins 2010 [67]
The Man from Nowhere 2010 [68]
Red: Werewolf Hunter 2010 [69]
22 Bullets 2010 [70]
Faster 2010 [23]
Machete 2010 [23]
Kick-Ass 2010 [71]
Super 2010 [23]
Batman: Under the Red Hood 2010 [72]
Drive Angry 2011 [73]
Hobo with a Shotgun 2011 [23]
Drive 2011
Gallowwalkers 2012 [74]
Scary or Die 2012 [75]
The Amazing Adventures of the Living Corpse 2012 [76]
The Amazing Spider-Man 2012 [23]
The Dark Knight Rises 2012 [23]
Bad Ass 2012
Taken 2 2012
Fire with Fire 2012 [77]
The Man with the Iron Fists 2012 [78]
Prisoners 2013 [79]
Avenged 2013 [80]
Kick-Ass 2 2013 [81]
The Outlaw Michael Howe 2013 [82]
Skin Trade 2014 [83]
John Wick 2014
John Doe: Vigilante 2014
In Order of Disappearance 2014
The Equalizer 2014 [84]
Mr. X 2015
Taken 3 2015
The Accountant 2016
Vengeance: A Love Story 2017
The Foreigner 2017
Burning 2018
Peppermint 2018
The Equalizer 2 2018
Death Wish 2018
Mandy 2018 [85]
War 2019
Rambo: Last Blood 2019 [86]
6 Underground 2019
Birds of Prey 2020
Promising Young Woman 2020
Nobody 2021 [87]
The Batman 2022

See also

References

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  3. ^ "Before the Nickelodeon: Edwin S. Porter and the Edison Manufacturing Company - American Themes and Values: Family and Society". University of California Press.
  4. ^ "The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938) - Michael Curtiz, William Keighley - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
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  8. ^ "The Virgin Spring (1959) - Ingmar Bergman - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
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  11. ^ "Youth of the Beast (1963) - Seijun Suzuki - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  12. ^ "The Sons of Katie Elder (1965) - Henry Hathaway | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  13. ^ "Django (1966) - Sergio Corbucci | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  14. ^ "Elusive Avengers (1966) - Edmond Keosayan | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  15. ^ "Born Losers (1967) - Tom Laughlin, T.C. Frank | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
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  19. ^ Lichtenfeld, Eric (2007). Action Speaks Louder: Violence, Spectacle, and the American Action Movie. Wesleyan. p. 9. ISBN 978-0-8195-6801-4.
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  27. ^ "Act of Vengeance (1974) - Robert Kelljchian, Bob Kelljan, Robert Kelljan | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  28. ^ "Keoma (1976) - Enzo G. Castellari, Enzo Castellari | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  29. ^ "The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976) - Clint Eastwood | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  30. ^ "Mad Dog Morgan (1976) - Philippe Mora | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  31. ^ "Rolling Thunder (1977) - John Flynn | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  32. ^ "Mad Max (1979) - George Miller - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  33. ^ "Lovely but Deadly (1983) - David Sheldon | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  34. ^ "1990: The Bronx Warriors (1983) - Elisa Livia Brighanti, Enzo G. Castellari, Dardana Sachetti, Enzo Castellari | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  35. ^ "Burst City (1982) - Sogo Ishii | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  36. ^ "Escape 2000 (1985) - Enzo G. Castellari | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  37. ^ "The Toxic Avenger (1985) - Michael Herz, Samuel Weil, Lloyd Kaufman - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  38. ^ "Streets of Fire (1984) - Walter Hill | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  39. ^ "Blastfighter (1984) - Lamberto Bava | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  40. ^ "The Last Dragon (1985) - Michael Schultz | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  41. ^ "Thou Shalt Not Kill... Except (1987) - Josh Becker | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  42. ^ "The Seventh Curse (1986) - Ngai Kai Lam, Lan-Wei Tsang - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  43. ^ "Miami Connection (1987) - Y.K. Kim, Richard W. Park, Park Woo-Sang | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  44. ^ "I'm Gonna Git You Sucka (1988) - Keenen Ivory Wayans | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  45. ^ "Pumpkinhead (1988) - Stan Winston - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  46. ^ "Traxx (1988) - Jerome Gary | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  47. ^ "The Punisher (1989) - Mark Goldblatt | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  48. ^ "Total Recall (1990) - Paul Verhoeven | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  49. ^ "Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991) - Kevin Reynolds - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  50. ^ "Dark Angel: The Ascent (1994) - Linda Hassani, J. Hassani - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  51. ^ "Blood & Donuts (1996) - Holly Dale - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  52. ^ "One Man's Justice (1995) - Kurt Wimmer | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  53. ^ "Night Hunter (1995) - Rick Jacobson, Rik Jacobson - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  54. ^ "Spawn (1997) - Mark A.Z. Dippe - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  55. ^ "Blade (1998) - Stephen Norrington, Steve Norrington - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  56. ^ "Faust: Love of the Damned (2000) - Brian Yuzna - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  57. ^ "Collateral Damage (2001) - Andrew Davis | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  58. ^ "Spider-Man (2002) - Sam Raimi | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  59. ^ "The Hebrew Hammer (2003) - Jonathan Kesselman | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
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  61. ^ "Bad Reputation (2005) - Jim Hemphill | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  62. ^ "Constantine (2005) - Francis Lawrence - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  63. ^ Stringer, Rebecca (January 2011). "From Victim to Vigilante". Feminism at the Movies: Understanding Gender in Contemporary Popular Cinema. Routeledge. Retrieved 8 November 2014.
  64. ^ "The Dead One (2007) - Brian Cox - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  65. ^ "Gutterballs (2008) - Ryan Nicholson | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  66. ^ Rohit, Parimal. "Defending 'Defendor'". Archived from the original on 2010-08-08. Retrieved 2010-06-02.
  67. ^ "13 Assassins (2010) - Takashi Miike - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  68. ^ "The Man From Nowhere (2010) - Lee Jeong-beom - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  69. ^ "Red: Werewolf Hunter (2010) - Sheldon Wilson - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  70. ^ "22 Bullets (2010) - Richard Berry - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
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  73. ^ "Drive Angry (2011) - Patrick Lussier - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  74. ^ "Gallowwalkers (2013) - Andrew Goth | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  75. ^ "Scary or Die (2012) - Michael Emanuel, Bob Badway, Igor Meglic - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  76. ^ "The Amazing Adventures of the Living Corpse (2012) - Justin Paul Ritter - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  77. ^ "Fire with Fire (2012) - David Barrett | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  78. ^ "The Man with the Iron Fists (2012) - the Rza | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie".
  79. ^ "Hugh Jackman to Star in Vigilante Thriller PRISONERS for November 2013 Release". Collider.com. March 15, 2012. Retrieved March 4, 2013.
  80. ^ "Savaged (2013) - Michael S. Ojeda - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  81. ^ Coyle, Jake (June 24, 2013). "Carrey says 'Kick-Ass 2' too violent after Newtown". The Big Story. Associated Press. Retrieved July 17, 2013.
  82. ^ "The Outlaw Michael Howe (2013) - Rotten Tomatoes". www.rottentomatoes.com. Archived from the original on 2015-11-02.
  83. ^ "Skin Trade (2015) - Ekachai Uekrongtham - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  84. ^ Steinberg, Don (September 18, 2014). "'The Equalizer': Vigilante Justice". The Wall Street Journal.
  85. ^ "Mandy (2018) - Panos Cosmatos - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related". AllMovie.
  86. ^ "Last Blood Isn't a Rambo Story, It's An Old Man Punisher Movie". 22 September 2019.
  87. ^ "Nobody Trailer Turns Bob Odenkirk Into a Brutal Vigilante". Movieweb.

Bibliography