I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more Liam Neeson. And, not classically-trained Schindler's List Liam Neeson, or even Love Actually Liam Neeson. (Although, those are pretty yummy.)
I'm talking gun-wielding, ass-kicking, one-liner-schilling Liam Neeson. I should also probably mention that I really don't like action movies. Being forced to watch White House Down on a plane recently is as close to torture as I'll probably ever get. But, if Liam had been there to bring down the band of terrorists, I probably would have put it on my Oscar nominees wish list.
I'm not really sure how to put into words just why I have this obsession. Plenty of friends have the hots for Neeson — it's that accent, after all. And, for many of us that have followed his career and that of his late wife's, simply looking at the actor elicits a sad wistfulness. How can you not love a man who lost the love of his life so tragically? (Still not convinced? Watch this clip from a recent 60 Minutes interview on the subject and just try not to cry.) A box-office win for Neeson is a box-office win for mankind.
But, few people find themselves shamelessly devouring subpar movies simply because he has a starring — or even secondary — role. The forthcoming Non-Stop is no exception. It's essentially Taken 2 filmed at 40,000 feet. Sign. Me. Up.
Now, before you start groaning and lamenting my ability to know a good movie when it smacks me upside the head, a disclaimer: I know that Liam Neeson movies aren't Academy Award material. Minus the aforementioned Schindler's List, of course. Moreover, I don't want them to be Academy Award material. Instead, when I head to the theater for a slice-o'-Liam, I'm looking for over-the-top action sequences in which Neeson's stunts defy his age — complimented by mild-to-medium suspense and a few cheesy lines muttered in a brooding British accent. And, maybe a scene or two in which Liam takes his top off. (What? I'm only human!)
Luckily for me (and rather unluckily for my date to the screening), Non-Stop was basically everything I wanted it to be. In case you couldn't surmise from the trailers/posters/name of the movie, I'll give you a basic breakdown of the plot.
The actor plays a law enforcement officer (air marshall, in this case) with a chip on his shoulder and a mysterious past. Julianne Moore as his gorgeous, charming, and equally mysterious seat mate who will obviously become a suspect halfway through. Hijacked plane. Liam Neeson to the rescue. Liam Neeson becomes the hijacker. But wait, then he yells "I'm not hijacking this plane, I'm trying to save it!" (Who to believe?!) In between all that you get lots of him fighting in airplane bathrooms and making serious faces while texting on a bafflingly old cell phone (flip phone, really?) — and unfortunately, never taking his top off.
Are you making fun of me yet? Because I ate that stuff up. If chuckling every time Liam Neeson makes an under-the-breath one-liner joke is wrong, I don't want to be right. If cheering every time Liam Neeson takes down a bad guy is wrong, I really don't want to be right. I'm not going to urge every person reading this to run out and see this movie. Rather, let this be the gentle recommendation of an infomercial. If you liked Taken, you're going to love Non-Stop! At the very least, you could do worse than spend 100 minutes listening to that smooth, Irish accent.
Non-Stop is in theaters February 28.