You’ve had a hard day at work. You’ve had an argument with your partner. Your kids are giving you hassle. The Sky man didn’t turn up when he said he would, and you are still left with no television. You’ve run out of tea bags. When these situations happen, nothing can be more satisfying than sitting down and watching someone unleash all hell upon those who have wronged them. Tales of revenge are as old as time and often come with the simplest yet most enjoyable of plotlines.
Ok, so maybe we should turn the other cheek, maybe if you took an eye for an eye, the world would go blind. But this is cinema. This is make-believe. This is escaping into your own fantasy world, where it’s ok to smile to yourself as Jean Reno opens up his coat and reveals a shitload of grenades to the villainous Gary Oldman.
Below are the ten most enjoyable and well-executed (no pun intended) revenge stories in film. You’ll notice some glaring omissions, such as Carrie, Sin City, Inglourious Basterds and, I’m sure, many more. The reason for this is that I consider such films to be using revenge as more of a subplot or secondary focus. In the films below, revenge is the sole aim of the game. So there you go, a whole introduction on revenge films without any mention of an old Klingon Proverb…whodda thunk it?