I think I lost faith in Liam Neeson as an actor, after almost accidentally reinventing himself as a veteran action hero in ‘Taken’ and putting in a sterling performance in the wonderfully bleak ‘The Grey’ he’s found himself over the last few years in a run of stinkers – the sequel to ‘Taken’, ‘Battleship’, ‘Wrath of the Titans’ and ‘Non-Stop’. Adapted from Lawrence Block’s novel ‘A Walk Among The Tombstones’ finally looks like a Neeson film worth watching.
The trailer begins with a black and white flashback, world weary private investigator Matthew Scudder (Neeson) was off duty killing time in a Cop bar, suddenly two guys come in and shoot the bartender, robbing the joint. Scudder chased the guys off into the street, and after discharging his weapon, an innocent bystander was hit by a stray round. Subsequently Scudder handed in his badge.
The hook is that after that fateful day Scudder is a rogue, an unlicensed private detective who carries out favours and in return he receives gifts of cash. It looks like he has a lot of shady clients. A new client comes in and says that somebody has kidnapped his wife. From the trailer we hear a Dictaphone recording of what sounds like the abduction. The trailer picks up when Scudder answers his phone and a sinister voice says “I understand I have a new player in the game”; cue a haunting cover of Soundgarden’s ‘Black Hole Sun’ that will get many people scurrying off to download this song pronto. There’s something about Neeson answering the phone in trailers which really gets the juices going.
It seems the trailer gives away a shocking moment for free, when a man who seems ready to give Scudder information about the kidnappers instead decides to jump of the roof of a tall building, presumably to his death, hopefully there is a twist because this seems like one of those genuine moments that shouldn’t be given away. The trailer finally builds to a crescendo creating a hive of fear and paranoia, as Scudder goes deeper into his investigation, putting his own life in jeopardy.
The exciting thing about this film is that the trailer gives off a slight Fincher vibe, recalling the suspense of films like ‘Se7en’ and ‘Zodiac’. It really does look like we could have a good Neeson film on her hands here.