The Commuter - This Daft Movie Does The Silly Rocks
Dir: Juame Collet-Serra
Starring Liam Neeson, Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, Elizabeth McGovern, Florench Pugh, Sam Neill
Is this movie taking the piss?
It seriously posits the situation in which Liam Neeson is asked – would you do something morally dubious and uncertain that could cause damage to others for a ridiculously large amount of money? His answer – “I already have – Taken 2 and Taken 3.” For starters.
Neeson’s fourth time round the block with Collet-Serra transposes the action from a plane and a car crash to a train (and a train crash), with Liam’s retired cop turned insurance salesman meeting the mysterious Farmiga who presents him with said ethical quandary. He thinks about it, thinks some more – then starts hitting people. Then, when he thinks the bad guys are holding his wife (an underused but decidedly odd McGovern) he starts hitting people with a purpose. After all, his wife has been “Taken” – just in case you weren’t keeping up.
It’s fair to say that The Commuter is ridiculously daft, but it manages to do so in an entertaining enough, passes-the-time manner, shifting gears from Taken-on-a train, to elements of Murder On The Orient Express, finally near-climaxing in a delightful homage to Unstoppable which is just pure out and out silly. It then even somehow manages to top that when the whole thing turns into Spartacus – we kid you not!
Neeson, having now turned 65 but playing a “youthful” 60 here, claims this is his geri-action movie swansong, saying goodbye to the genre that has bought him several houses, but never delivered anything even close to matching the violent beauty of the original Taken. If it is indeed curtains for this form, and Neeson plans to go back to what some may call quality films instead, this is not the worst way to bow out. It will, at least, keep you laughing.
Follow us on Twitter @lastwordonearth