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.
In United States cinema, vigilante films gained prominence during the 1970s with "touchstones" like Death Wish and Dirty Harry, both of which had sequels. 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. 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).
List of films
The following vigilante films are listed alphabetically.
Late 60s-mid 80s vigilante film wave
1980s to the present
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