The Equalizer is a 2014 American thriller film directed by Antoine Fuqua and written by Richard Wenk, based on the television series of same name, which starred Edward Woodward. The film stars Denzel Washington, Marton Csokas, Chloë Grace Moretz, Marton Csokas, David Harbour, Melissa Leo, Haley Bennett and Bill Pullman.
Robert McCall (Denzel Washington) is a retired black ops government operative who lives in Boston, Massachusetts and works at a Home Mart hardware store, where he befriends many of his co-workers and also tries to help a Mexican security trainee named Ralph pass his qualification exam. McCall has promised his recently-deceased wife that he'd leave his old life behind, but is compelled to act after his teenage friend Teri (Chloë Grace Moretz) whose real name is Alina, was seen being mistreated by her pimp. Alina's life was destroyed at the age of five or six when she was a victim of sex trafficking by the Russian Mafia and then became their sex slave and forced into prostitution.
Robert vows to save her after she is hospitalized after being brutally beaten by her pimp, Slavi (David Meunier). McCall enters the Russian mob territory and tries to convince Slavi to release Alina by paying him $9800 (a price Slavi constantly remarks as being 'nine thousand dollars' instead), but Slavi refuses, taking this as an insult to him. McCall pretends to walk away, but turns back and takes out Slavi and his men with their own weapons all in under half a minute. He leaves Slavi to drown in his own blood, telling him that he should have accepted the money. Leaving the scene, McCall removes the footage of all security cameras that had recorded him.
In retaliation, Vladimir Pushkin (Vladimir Kulich), sends his enforcer, Teddy (Marton Csokas), from Moscow to Boston to find and eliminate the culprit. Meanwhile, Ralph withdrew his application for being a security guard at Home Mart to help out his mother at his family restaurant, which was set fire to the day earlier by corrupt policemen as an act of extortion, something Ralph tries to withhold from McCall. McCall apprehends the corrupt policemen and forces them to pay back all the money they have gotten through extortion. Ralph passes his qualification test and becomes a security guard at Home Mart.
Teddy manages to pinpoint the culprit to be McCall, and is surprised by his skills and tries to capture him to use his skills instead of killing him. McCall, however, outsmarts all of his pursuers and Teddy's attempt to capture him, while completing more acts of vigilantism. After evading several assassination and capture attempts, McCall visits fellow retired operatives Susan Plummer (Melissa Leo) and Brian Plummer (Bill Pullman) in Virginia, who help him acquire intelligence on Pushkin's activities and Teddy, who is found to be ex-Spetnaz, and whose real name is Nikolai. After McCall left, Susan remarks to Brian that McCall was not actually looking for help, but was actually asking for permission.
McCall then captures Frank Masters (David Harbour), a corrupt Bostonian policeman who has been aiding Teddy, by trapping him in his car and threatening him by flooding the vehicle with carbon monoxide. Frank relents and helps McCall destroy one of Pushkin's money laundering operations in Boston. McCall also uses Frank's information to slowly destroy Pushkin's empire. While having dinner with a mobster, Teddy cuts a call from Pushkin, while McCall sits opposite of him and hands him the previous mobster's broken and bloody shades, and also his contact number. Unsatisfied with Teddy's lack of progress and the failure of his money laundering operations, Pushkin threatens Teddy to either kill McCall or not come home to Moscow. Teddy reacts angrily after the call, and stops wanting to capture McCall and wanting to kill him instead.
In retaliation for McCall blowing up Pushkin's container ship meant for smuggling, Teddy and his men attack Home Mart and take Ralph and the workers of Home Mart hostage to lure him out, threatening to kill them if he does not surrender. McCall travels to the place and evades an ambush attempt set up by Teddy's snipers. He enters the store and disables most of the lighting, and then kills Teddy's henchmen one by one through the use of booby traps, after telling Ralph to get everybody out and leave nobody behind. After a struggle between McCall and one of Teddy's heavier men, Ralph comes back to help out McCall, but gets shot in the leg.
McCall tells Ralph to turn on the electricity after an exact time of 40 seconds, giving him his watch. A contraption of chemicals in a microwave that McCall set up was turned on by the electricity, causing an explosion that kills the last of Teddy's men. Teddy is lured to Ralph, and gets shot several times by McCall's nail gun, who finishes him with a shot to the throat.
McCall then travels to Moscow, Russia and kills Pushkin's guards, and sets up an electrical trap to kill Pushkin himself, after Pushkin tried to offer him money. McCall returns to Boston, where he reunites with Alina, who has recovered from her wounds and thanks him for giving her a second chance. McCall is inspired to continue using his skills to help people in desperate need and puts an online ad, identifying himself as "The Equalizer". He soon receives another plea for help and sets off to answer it.
- Denzel Washington as Robert McCall
- Chloë Grace Moretz as Teri/Alina
- Marton Csokas as Teddy
- Melissa Leo as Susan Plummer
- Bill Pullman as Brian Plummer
- Haley Bennett as Mandy
- Vladimir Kulich as Vladimir Pushkin
- Robert Wahlberg as Detective Harris
- David Meunier as Slavi
- Matt Lasky as Marat
- Allen Maldonado as Marcus
- Debra Garrett as Jade
- Mike O'Dea as Remar
- James Wilcox as Pederson
- Johnny Skourtis as Ralphie