Death Wish 4: The Crackdown (1987)

R | 102 mins | Drama, Mystery | 6 November 1987

Director:

J. Lee Thompson

Producer:

Pancho Kohner

Cinematographer:

Gideon Porath

Production Designer:

Whitney Brooke Wheeler

Production Company:

Cannon Films, Inc.
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HISTORY


       Death Wish 4: The Crackdown was the fourth installment of the popular series about vigilante Paul Kersey, starring Charles Bronson. The series kicked off in 1974 with the release of Death Wish (see entry), which was loosely based on the novel of the same name by Brian Garfield. That film was followed by Death Wish II (1982) and Death Wish 3 (1985, see entries).
       Principal photography for Death Wish 4 was originally scheduled to begin on 5 Jan 1987, according to the 31 Dec 1986 DV production chart. However, the start was delayed to an unspecified date in Mar 1987, according to the 20 Feb 1987 DV production chart. Filming did not begin in March, either. The 18 Mar 1987 HR explained the delay was due to a stipulation in a line of credit agreement which prohibited the Cannon Group, Inc. from having more than two movies in principal photography at the same time. Warner Communications Inc. had guaranteed a $25 million line of credit for the financially troubled Cannon Group in Dec 1986.
       Principal photography got underway in Los Angeles, CA, on 13 Apr 1987, according to the 15 May 1987 DV production chart.
       Death Wish 4: The Crackdown opened on 1,030 screens on 6 Nov 1987, earning $2.5 million in its first three days of release according to 10 Nov 1987 DV box-office charts.
       A fifth installment in the series, Death Wish V: The Face of Death (see entry). was released in 1994.

      End credits include “special thanks” ... More Less


       Death Wish 4: The Crackdown was the fourth installment of the popular series about vigilante Paul Kersey, starring Charles Bronson. The series kicked off in 1974 with the release of Death Wish (see entry), which was loosely based on the novel of the same name by Brian Garfield. That film was followed by Death Wish II (1982) and Death Wish 3 (1985, see entries).
       Principal photography for Death Wish 4 was originally scheduled to begin on 5 Jan 1987, according to the 31 Dec 1986 DV production chart. However, the start was delayed to an unspecified date in Mar 1987, according to the 20 Feb 1987 DV production chart. Filming did not begin in March, either. The 18 Mar 1987 HR explained the delay was due to a stipulation in a line of credit agreement which prohibited the Cannon Group, Inc. from having more than two movies in principal photography at the same time. Warner Communications Inc. had guaranteed a $25 million line of credit for the financially troubled Cannon Group in Dec 1986.
       Principal photography got underway in Los Angeles, CA, on 13 Apr 1987, according to the 15 May 1987 DV production chart.
       Death Wish 4: The Crackdown opened on 1,030 screens on 6 Nov 1987, earning $2.5 million in its first three days of release according to 10 Nov 1987 DV box-office charts.
       A fifth installment in the series, Death Wish V: The Face of Death (see entry). was released in 1994.

      End credits include “special thanks” to: “R. Duell & Associates; The Nadel Partnership, Inc.; Norm Marshall & Associates; Lyle R. Wheeler & Associates.”

              End credits also note: “Computers courtesy of Radio Shack; Oldsmobile cars supplied through The Vista Group; Mazda and Chrysler products supplied by Bob Hadler.” More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
31 Dec 1986.
---
Daily Variety
20 Feb 1987.
---
Daily Variety
15 May 1987.
---
Daily Variety
9 Nov 1987
p. 3.
Daily Variety
10 Nov 1987.
---
Hollywood Reporter
18 Mar 1987
p. 1, 26.
Hollywood Reporter
9 Nov 1987
p. 3, 7.
Los Angeles Times
9 Nov 1987
p. 3.
New York Times
7 Nov 1987
p. 14.
Variety
11 Nov 1987
p. 12.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
and
as Detective Reiner
Co-starring:
Zacharias's gang:
Romero's gang:
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
The Cannon Group, Inc. Presents
A Golan-Globus Production
A J. Lee Thompson Film
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
Exec prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Still photog
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Asst cam trainee
2d unit dir of photog
Addl cam op
Addl cam op
Addl 1st asst cam
Addl 2d asst cam
Best boy elec
Key grip
Best boy grip
Dolly grip
Grip
Photog equip by
Provided by
ART DIRECTORS
Art dept coord
FILM EDITORS
1st asst ed
Apprentice ed
Negative cutting
Negative cutting
SET DECORATORS
On set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Swing gang
Swing gang
Prop master
Prop asst
Prop asst
COSTUMES
Cost supv
Set costumer
Costumer asst
MUSIC
Mus comp and performed by
Mus comp and performed by
Mus comp and performed by
Mus consultant
Mus supv
Mus coord
Mus ed
Mus mixer
SOUND
Sd mixer
Boom op
Cable man
Supv sd ed
Asst sd ed
ADR/Foley mixer
Dial ed
Dial asst
Foley ed
Foley asst
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff supv
Title des
Title des
Main and end titles
MAKEUP
Key makeup, Hair and prosthetics
Makeup and prosthetics artist
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Exec in charge of prod
Prod supv
Prod coord
Loc mgr
Asst to the prod
Scr supv
Prod auditor
Exec trainee
Equipment tech
Extras casting
Office prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Loc asst
Craft service
Post prod supv
Post prod supv
Post prod coord
Transportation coord
Transportation coord
Transportation capt
Prod services and equip provided by
STAND INS
Stunt coord
Stunt double
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stand-in
Stand-in
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col timer
Col by
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on characters created by Brian Garfield.
SONGS
"In Some Brazil," written, arranged, performed and produced by Michael Bishop
"The Hunger," written, arranged, performed and produced by Michael Bishop.
PERFORMER
COMPOSER
DETAILS
Series:
Alternate Title:
Death Wish IV: The Crackdown
Release Date:
6 November 1987
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York opening: 6 November 1987
Production Date:
began 13 April 1987
Copyright Claimant:
Cannon Films, Inc., & Cannon International
Copyright Date:
8 April 1988
Copyright Number:
PA376425
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
TVC
Duration(in mins):
102
MPAA Rating:
R
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
28741
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In Los Angeles, California, architect Paul Kersey has been dating newspaper reporter Karen Sheldon for two years. Paul also employees Karen’s seventeen-year-old daughter, Erica, as an intern in his firm, Paul Kersey & Associates. One night while Paul and Karen have dinner, Erica goes with her boyfriend to an amusement arcade where they both buy small bags of cocaine. A few hours later, Erica dies from a drug overdose. The next night, Paul follows Erica’s boyfriend to the arcade. The boyfriend confronts his drug dealer, JoJo, who stabs him in the stomach, killing him. When Paul arrives, JoJo runs away, but Paul shoots and kills him. Paul is summoned to the home of millionaire Nathan White, who wants to hire him because of his history of vigilante justice. White reports his beloved daughter, Lisa, died of a drug overdose last year, shortly after starting college. White has collected information about the major illegal drug organizations in Southern California and now wants Paul’s help to stop them. Paul says he needs a few days to think it over. After Erica’s funeral, Karen blames herself for not knowing her daughter was using drugs. Paul suggests she channel her grief by doing an investigative piece for her newspaper. Karen pitches the story to her editor, who reluctantly agrees. Karen goes to the coroner’s office to look at the bodies of teenagers who died from drug overdoses, then goes to the arcade trying to buy information. One of the dealers says the kind of information she wants will cost her a lot of money. Paul agrees to work for Nathan White, who tells him that two gangs control ninety percent of the illegal ... +


In Los Angeles, California, architect Paul Kersey has been dating newspaper reporter Karen Sheldon for two years. Paul also employees Karen’s seventeen-year-old daughter, Erica, as an intern in his firm, Paul Kersey & Associates. One night while Paul and Karen have dinner, Erica goes with her boyfriend to an amusement arcade where they both buy small bags of cocaine. A few hours later, Erica dies from a drug overdose. The next night, Paul follows Erica’s boyfriend to the arcade. The boyfriend confronts his drug dealer, JoJo, who stabs him in the stomach, killing him. When Paul arrives, JoJo runs away, but Paul shoots and kills him. Paul is summoned to the home of millionaire Nathan White, who wants to hire him because of his history of vigilante justice. White reports his beloved daughter, Lisa, died of a drug overdose last year, shortly after starting college. White has collected information about the major illegal drug organizations in Southern California and now wants Paul’s help to stop them. Paul says he needs a few days to think it over. After Erica’s funeral, Karen blames herself for not knowing her daughter was using drugs. Paul suggests she channel her grief by doing an investigative piece for her newspaper. Karen pitches the story to her editor, who reluctantly agrees. Karen goes to the coroner’s office to look at the bodies of teenagers who died from drug overdoses, then goes to the arcade trying to buy information. One of the dealers says the kind of information she wants will cost her a lot of money. Paul agrees to work for Nathan White, who tells him that two gangs control ninety percent of the illegal drugs in Southern California, the Zacharias gang, led by Ed Zacharias, and the Romero gang, led by brothers Jack and Tony Romero. A year before, the Romeros tried to invade the Zacharias territory and a gang war erupted. Ed Zacharias negotiated a truce, but tensions could explode at any time. Meanwhile, police detectives Reiner and Nozaki receive a ballistics report noting the bullet that killed JoJo matches the gun used in a vigilante shooting two years earlier. Witnesses at the arcade gave a description of Paul’s car and a partial license plate number, so police go to question him. Paul lies, saying he was at home on the night of the shooting and does not own a gun. Paul poses as a bartender working a party at Ed Zacharias’s Hollywood Hills home. When Paul slips away to plant bugs in the telephone, he overhears Zacharias and the Romeros talking, each side saying they want to maintain the peace. He also sees Zacharias murder a man who was skimming drugs from the shipments. When Paul accidently makes a noise, Zacharias’s men try to kill him, but he escapes. Paul plants an explosive in a bottle of wine, then gives the bottle to some Romero gang members, who are killed when it explodes. Later, Paul kills another of the Romero men who operates out of a video store and sends another Romero man flying off a high-rise balcony to his death. At a fish cannery in San Pedro, California, Paul also shoots up Zacharias’s backroom drug operation. Police believe these deaths mean the gang war is starting up again and tell detectives Reiner and Nozaki to forget about the vigilante case for now. However, Nozaki recognizes Paul’s car at one of the crime scenes and realizes he is the vigilante. Nozaki goes to Paul’s office, announcing he is working for Zacharias and wants to know who hired him. When Paul refuses to answer, Nozaki tries to shoot him, but Paul fires first, killing him. After police find Nozaki’s body dumped on a hiking trail, Detective Reiner discovers the Department of Motor Vehicles records linking Paul to the vigilante murders. Ed Zacharias arranges a meeting with the Romero brothers at an oil field where he tries to explain that someone is setting them up. From a nearby hill, Paul opens fire on them. The two gangs start firing at each other and soon both sides are dead. When Paul arrives at a deserted field for an appointment with Nathan White, the chauffer says he is supposed to drive Paul to the meeting. But after Paul gets in the limousine, the chauffer walks away and Paul realizes he is locked inside the car. He shoots out the back window and crawls out just before the car explodes. Paul goes to Nathan White’s mansion to confront him, but the man there is not who Paul has been dealing with. This man, the real Nathan White, says he has been in Europe for the past three months and Paul realizes he has been set up. Police pull over Paul’s car and arrest him for murder. However, when they start driving in the opposite direction from the police station, Paul realizes they are not real policemen. He distracts the fake cops and they wreck the car, as Paul escapes. The fake Nathan White makes plans to take over the region’s drug operations now that the Zacharias and Romero gangs are dead. When he learns that Paul is still alive, he has Karen Sheldon kidnapped. Detective Reiner waits at Paul’s house to arrest him, but before he can take Paul in, the fake Nathan White telephones, saying he has Karen. Paul knocks Reiner unconscious, grabs some high-powered weapons and goes to a designated parking garage. White’s men shoot Paul’s car, only to discover he is not inside. Paul starts shooting at them, killing several of White’s men. White escapes to a roller skating rink and Paul follows. A shoot out ensues, but White escapes with Karen as his hostage. When Karen breaks free, White shoots her in the back, killing her. Paul fires a bazooka at White, killing him. Reiner comes upon the scene and tries to arrest Paul, but the vigilante just walks away and Reiner does nothing to stop him.
+

GENRE
Genres:
Sub-genre:
Crime, Suspense


Subject
Subject (Major):

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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