Archives for posts with tag: Liam Neeson

Why is it I’m so happy “The Commuter” (2018) didn’t suck? Because I was afraid it’d be a lame, Taken-on-a-train knockoff? It kinda was (family in jeopardy, cellphones, ugh), but it also incorporated Hitchcock, “Duel” and every other halfway decent action movie involving trains. And the Noo Yawk accents were good enough. And I’ll overlook small violations of the laws of train physics and the Action Movie Concussion Protocol. Because when everything’s seemingly either a sucky sequel, sucky comic book movie, sucky horror movie, or combination of the above, there’s something nice about a slightly-above-average Liam Neeson movie. Noble, even.

Jerusalem’s a messed-up place, what with everybody who lives there wanting to kill each other and everything. That’s my 17-word synopsis of current geopolitics, as well as the 2005 film “Kingdom of Heaven,” which takes place 900 years earlier, when Jerusalem was just as messed up as now. Except back then, dreamy Orlando Bloom served as a knight who represented all that is good in men. Because of that, all the non-dreamy men want to kill him. So, basically, people haven’t learned a damn thing in the past 900 years, which this film goes to great lengths to remind us.

Remember when we used to debate who was the better Batman? Clooney? Keaton? Ummm, Kilmer? And then, in 2005, came the Dark Knight trilogy, with “Batman Begins.” Bankable, big-name stars can make for good box office, but it’s the story that makes for a great movie. When Christopher Nolan rebooted the Caped Crusader, he made the story less like the cartoonish 1960s TV series and more like the brooding comic books. And he surrounded a relative B-lister, Christian Bale, with stellar cast of character actors. Because if the story’s good enough, Batman is the only bankable big name you need.