Run All Night (2015)
Liam Neeson, as I have stated before, is my jam. If Robert Mitchum or Charles Bronson were still around I would have a harder choice, but since they’re not, Liam is the undisputed king of my favorite hard asses. Ed Harris is also up there, and this movie brings the two of them together as an aging gangster and hitman, both of with grown up children who wind up in a really tight bind, one night in the city. Harris plays an aging gangster who laments the fact that all of the locally owned neighborhood businesses he used to squeeze are now corporate chains such as Applebees, a strange side effect of the corporate homogenization of America. This movie has a weird way of cutting in between scenes at, by going up out of the scene to a bird’s eye view of the city and then zooming back down to the location of the next scene. It is creative, but distracting nonetheless. This movie does a good job of merging together the post 2009 “Very Particular Set of Skills” Neeson with the pre 2009 Neeson that was mainly known for just being a damn good actor. His character here has a good meaty backstory as a troubled hitman who now merely exists as a hanger on in a world he can no longer identify with. Him and Harris riff off of each other effortlessly. While the movie does not provide much in the way of innovation, it knows what it is, and achieves what it sets out to in an professional workman like way. Those who are fans of Neesan and gritty urban dramas will lap it up, those expecting more will have more mixed results. This movie is far from the bag of maniacal fun that Taken is, nor is it a masterpiece of storytelling, but it is a good honest piece of gritty filmmaking and definitely worth a watch.
Daily Inquiry: Which Neeson do you prefer, pre or post Taken?