RIDERS OF JUSTICE had my attention from beginning to end and it’s an incredible action-slash-comedy from Denmark. It’s a country that has some amazing action films in the last decade and this is no exception. I go every year to Fantastic Fest in Austin, TX and this is the type of film that would been an audience favorite at the festival for its great blend of great drama, weird comedy and action, and the only bad thing I can say about this film is that I wish I would have seen it with that audience.
RIDERS OF JUSTICE is the new film from the director of MEN & CHICKEN, Anders Thomas Jensen. This is not as weird as that film but still a little weird. I would describe this film as JOHN WICK meets REVENGE OF THE NERDS. RIDERS OF JUSTICE is a film that deals with loss and the randomness of tragedy. When tragedy struck any human being we are always thinking of how could we have prevented it. That thought drives many of characters in this movie insane. These characters come to accept thru film that this world can be cruel and unfair but all the outcast in this movie end up creating their own weird family.
The film is about Markus (Mads Mikkelsen), a Danish special forces soldier that while on tour in Afghanistan his wife dies in train accident. His job had already created strain with his daughter and wife. Now he is a widower and must take care of his daughter Mathilde (Andrea Heick Gadeberg) that was a survivor of the accident. Their both trying to deal with the grief in their own way. One day another survivor from the train accident Otto (Nikolaj Lie Kaas), a statistician that believes his calculations tell him this might not have been an accident. Otto believes this was a hit to kill a witness that was going to testify against the criminal gang Riders of Justice. Now Markus finds a new way to deal with his grief by killing the people responsible for his wife death. Some good old fashion violent revenge becomes Markus’ method of coping with grief. At the same time, he must look over his daughter that is growing more apart from him; but at the same time, he doesn’t want her to know about his journey of revenge.
Markus forms a team with Otto; that bring him additional support from his scientist friend Gert (Morten Suurballe); another Statistician that wants to help and Leif (Jesper Ole Feit Andersen) a reclusive hacker that turns out to be a natural born killing machine. They provide him with logistics and information about the Riders of Justice. This nerdy trio is incredible, I laugh so much every time they were on screen. They’re also the heart of this movie. They are keeping Markus from falling into the dark abyss of revenge and they provide the light moments in the picture. The nerdy trio are the heart of the movie as they help repair the relationship between father and daughter.
The action in this film is amazing and violent. It’s the same type of action you seen in the WICK movies where you see precise tactical and fast shooting. Markus doesn’t need many bullets to take out the wave of bad guys. The action scene will make you flinch. I love the reactions of the trio when they see Markus kill someone in front of them. They are the chorus to these action sequences.
RIDERS OF JUSTICE was an amazing film. I want to see more adventures from this team as I consider them the “Danish A-team”. I want to see many more movies of this wacky group. The way they end up at the movie give us the possibility of a future action film. So far, this is the best film I seen this year.
Antonio reviewed this title from the IFFR/Rotterdam festival earlier this year. RIDERS OF JUSTICE will be available in Canada and the United States on digital this Friday. And you can win a copy by hitting up our Contests button above!