We gave it a B-
The initial version of the Mel-starring thriller was an above-average exercise in retro noir. So this new cut of Payback from Brian Helgeland, who was replaced during postproduction, plays largely as an itch-scratching exercise, despite the restoration of his original, more ambiguous ending. EXTRAS
A doc finds Helgeland ruminating on his removal with irritating equanimity. But it does contain a vital piece of directorial advice, which is repeated on the amiably informative commentary: If you want to keep your job, never ever ever have one of your characters kill a dog.