A friend mentioned their desire to see "Dead Man Down" and I remarked that the early reviews were not impressive.  I saw the movie and I thought it was a "GEM" good enough movie.  It is not great and it is not 
horrible.  The story is about murder and revenge, but the real  compelling element is a romance between two people who have suffered great tragedy in their lives. 
 Colin Farrell is strong and silent as the alpha male and Noomi Rapace is the long suffering and much abused heroine.
Both characters are flawed by the tragedies that
have driven them to seek drastic revenge, bordering on madness, for the wrongs done to them.  

  Terrence Howard is a major Hollywood star, but he is not really given enough to do in his role as
a crime boss trying to keep his empire safe from a very clever unknown attacker.

   The film is well made by Niels Arden Oplev, director of the much 
respected "Girl With The Dragon Tattoo."  

   I think the problem that keeps this film from being more than average is the
fact that we ( the audience) don't reach the emotional level of rooting for the
"good guys."  It is emotional involvement that lifts a film to that next level -
see "Django" -- "Lincoln" - "Argo" - if you want to understand what I mean -
those three giant films make you root for the heroes, not merely watch them.