REVIEW: ‘Non-Stop,’ or ‘Taken 3: This one’s in the sky!’

(Photo provided by movieposterdb.com)

(Photo provided by movieposterdb.com)

Liam Neeson stars in the newest borderline “almost could be good” action hit, “Non-Stop.” Alongside him are co-stars Julianne Moore and Scoot McNairy. In “Non-Stop,” Air Marshall Bill Marks is on another flight he is ordered to protect when he receives a strange series of texts that warn him that one passenger on the plane will die every 20 minutes unless 150 million dollars are transferred to an unknown bank account. The premise itself is not that bad of an idea, and for the most part it is executed pretty well.

However, about 3/4ths of the way through, too many plot points are thrown in at once and complications arise that really just make the whole experience more and more confusing. For most of the film, we are treated to some very “Taken”-like action, namely Liam Neeson beating up other people. A lot. While this is cool, Neeson’s character feels exactly like his character in “Taken,” which I personally believe is not good, only because I feel like I’ve watched these exact same fighting scenes before.

The suspense doesn’t hold up to anything like last year’s “Captain Philips” or “Gravity,” but there are still moments that will have you clinging to your seat in anxiety.
If you’re a Liam Neeson fan, this is a great example of an awesome Liam Neeson performance in a mediocre movie. Neeson is the quintessential Irish action hero as he is in most of the films he stars in, but he never fails to tone it down and bring it to a serious level that grasps the audience. Julianne Moore, although a great actress, feels like a strange role to say the least. She is sort of the sarcastic comic relief, but a lot of what her character says and does isn’t funny enough to actually be funny, so it ends up just being awkward and cheesy.

That leads me to another problem with this film. The dialogue, a crucial part to any good film, isn’t that great. There’s a really goofy conversation between two characters at the end of the film, and it does not really work because it leaves a rather negative impression as you get from your seat to leave the theatre.
The visuals are actually not that bad given the mediocrity of the film, except for a few CGI shots of an airplane towards the end (they look like a video game cut-scene). Some of my favorite parts are when we get some distorted POV shots from a drunken Liam Neeson.

Overall, I really was enjoying “Non-Stop” until the final plot points were trying to tie together. A mix of strange story decisions, cheese dialogue and an extremely unsatisfying plot twist make what could have been a memorable airplane thriller. Instead, Liam Nesson delivers another pointless action movie that will be forgotten. Hopefully, his next good performance will be in an above average movie.

2.5/5 stars

Lukas Salazar is a sophomore film production major. This review reflects the views of the writer only. 

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