Run All Night
Direction: Jaume Collet-Serra Actors: Liam Neeson, Joel Kinnamen
There is no stopping Liam Neeson. The veteran star of the Taken trilogy consolidates his geri-action credentials with this glossy thriller which delivers conflict and peril in equal measure.
Illustrating the dictum that the sins of parents are visited upon their offspring, Run All Night features Neeson as a former hit-man whose estranged son (Kinnamen, the latter-day RoboCop) becomes the target of his mob boss and best friend (Ed Harris, brutally effective). Nicknamed "the gravedigger" for his prolific kill rate, the hard-drinking gunman-for-hire is galvanised into action after his boy witnesses a gangland killing. It’s now up to the father to protect his son from trigger-happy minions and redeem himself in the process.
Collaborating with the Spanish-born director Jaume Collet-Serra for the third time (after Unknown and Non-Stop), Neeson exhibits a steely resolve. Accepting responsibility for his past transgressions, he is determined to keep his family out of harm’s way. Among the expertly staged set pieces, count the escape from a towering inferno, a shoot-out in a train yard and a car chase in which for a change, a cop vehicle is pursued through the rain-sodden streets of New York.
There are vivid supporting turns by Vincent D’Onofrio as an upright detective and Nick Nolte as the grumpy uncle. On the other hand, rapper-turned-actor Common is wasted in the role of an assassin tasked with eliminating the father-son duo.
A propulsive background music score by the Dutch instrumentalist Tom Kolkenborg (aka Junkie XL) is an added attraction.
Annoyingly, speed-ramping camera moves are consistently utilised as transition devices from one location to the next. Worse, the script is bogged down with such smug one-liners as, "I wanted a better life for you than the one I chose for myself". Depending upon the viewer’s willingness to suspend disbelief, the film makes for a pulpy enough entertainment.