Liam Neeson stars in a ‘Non-Stop spiritual sequel’ that doesn’t exactly hit the marks. Read our ‘The Commuter’ review for more on the new film.
Liam Neeson‘s dual personas come together as one character in The Commuter, but don’t quite mesh. Neeson’s battle scarred, badass Taken tendencies clashes with the mild-mannered 60-year-old businessman he’s attempting to play in this film, leading to an overall clunky film. Nevertheless, a Liam Neeson movie is a Liam Neeson movie. AKA, no one’s expecting this to be a masterpiece, and it’s not. It’s a thriller that lets you check out for awhile and see Neeson use that particular set of skills that comes so naturally to him.
Don’t get it wrong; The Commuter is enjoyable as hell, though it’s missing that spark that’s made Neeson an action star. The premise is simple (but crazy): a mysterious woman (Vera Farmiga) comes up to insurance salesman Michael (Neeson) while he’s taking the train home during his daily commute. She presents him with a proposition: identify a hidden passenger on the train before the last stop, and she’ll give him $100,000. Tempting, right? The reason for this odd request remains hidden, but it soon becomes clear that something sinister is brewing.
We soon learn that Michael isn’t your ordinary salesman. He’s an ex-cop. Of course! That comes in handy when it’s revealed that he’s now caught up in a criminal conspiracy — all onboard his daily commute. If this just sounds like Non-Stop on a train, you’re right. The film is actually directed by Jaume Collet-Serra, the director of Non-Stop and several other Neeson starring vehicles.
HollywoodLife.com caught up with Collet-Serra on the red carpet at The Commuter NYC premiere, and he explained what the first film lent to The Commuter. “I love working with Liam. We wanted to kind of repeat the experience [of working together] and give the same experience to the audience. And we were trying to work out Non-Stop sequel and we couldn’t really figure it out, so we kind of went on and did the spiritual sequel of sorts. That’s what it is, it’s a movie that’s a spiritual sequel. It gives the audience the same experience as Non-Stop, but with different characters.” There you have it!
The Commuter hits theaters on January 12. It also stars Patrick Wilson, Jonathan Banks, and Sam Neill.
HollywoodLifers, are you going to see The Commuter? Let us know!