A Daredevil by any other name would be just as sweet, as this homage to the Hell’s Kitchen native proves. With such a short runtime, The Devil Sees Red is able to establish itself as many things. It is a love letter to Daredevil, a homage to the streets of New York that lends itself to acts of super hero, and a film-noir/B-movie story of a blind lawyer taking the law into his own hands. A blind lawyer that is literally taking back the night, one punch at a time. We witness his birth as a street level vigilante after a late night stroll down a darkened ally way leads to a mugging. From that point on we see John push away everything else about his life in order to focus on his new found purpose and vengeance.
It seems to be implied that John has been alienating those in life long before the mugging, as it’s implied with the opening shot of our hero, which has him standing in the darkness waiting for his train. We see him right before taking revenge on those who mugged him, sending his girlfriend home, and later makes her leave. His partner rightfully leaves John with some hard decisions to make about their struggling law firm. Throughout the film John only connects with one other character, his assistant Amanda,who seems to share his need for vigilante justice on the mean streets of the Big Apple.
About two-thirds into the short John tells his partner (interestingly enough named Frank Urich), this is an awakening and that’s exactly what this film is portraying. John has been asleep for a long time, and the attack was the incident that leads him to finally wake up and fight for what he thinks is justice. The tone of the two action sequences remind me of the movie Super, with John’s extreme actions taken towards those that take advantage of the innocent. In the last fight, John beats one man so badly that an unknown man yells out that he’s calling the cops, making John flee. At the end, we’re left wanting more. We want to see John continue on his journey towards one day becoming something more than just a man who beats up low-level thugs, and perhaps evolving one day into a a man without fear, though definitely not “the” man without fear(now you can’t sue, Marvel).
While nowhere near perfect, I really wanted more information on the incident that blinded John, and why his partner felt so much guilt over it, but this is likely due more to the short runtime than anything else. Regardless, it is worth checking out. If you already finished binge watching the new Netflix series, or just like the character of Daredevil, I would definitely recommend this B-movie tribute to the red devil that stalks the streets of the city that never sleeps. FYI, make sure you stick around to the very end for the end-credit scene.
Check it out below: