Honest Thief review – Liam Neeson is back, playing Liam Neeson the best policy

2.5

Summary

Had there been more time spent on the more off-center ideas in the script then this may have been more worthwhile, but as it stands it is generic and well worn, offering nothing new or creative to the genre.

Liam Neeson is back, playing Liam Neeson in this new thriller from director Mark Williams. In Honest Thief, Neeson is Tom Carter, ex-marine turned bank robber who falls for Annie (Kate Walsh) and decides that it would be best to turn himself in before he makes a life with her. He has stolen over 9 million dollars, and phones the FBI to come clean, but of course, the two agents assigned to check him out double-cross him, steal from his bounty, and frame him for murder.

Fans of Neeson will find themselves in familiar territory here. The slight plot is stretched to snapping, as we follow crooked agents and on-the-run Liam through the streets of Boston, in a cat and mouse chase that seems hampered by a limited budget.

The production on the whole here feels a little cheap. The action sequences are short and interspersed with badly paced character moments that slow the pace down to a crawl, making the third act of the film predictable and cliched.

It’s a shame because there are moments when it seemed that the director may have been trying to do something more with the story. Recently divorced Agent Meyers is lumbered with the family dog after his ex got the house, and there was a chance here to lighten the mood slightly, and Neeson has a chip on his shoulder about the media naming him “The In and Out Bandit” again offering a chance of light relief, but these quirkier moments are thrown away as director Williams decides to aim for a grittier approach. But the grittier stuff also fails to land with dialed-back violence and fight scenes that lack any real punch.

The whole thing feels tepid and undercooked, Neeson is the same as he always is, and Jai Courtney and Anthony Ramos, crooked FBI agents, are completely unconvincing as FBI agents in the first place.

Had there been more time spent on the more off-center ideas in the script then this may have been more worthwhile, but as it stands it is generic and well worn, offering nothing new or creative to the genre.

Despite the review, if you are a film lover, please go to your local movie theatre and check something out. We were at our local Odeon on Friday night to see this. It was only its second night, and there were 9 people in the place to see it. Cinema needs some support just now, so if it’s safe and possible to go, and at our Odeon it certainly is, then go see something.


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Louie Fecou

Louie Fecou reviews films, tv shows and comics for Ready Steady Cut, HC Movie Reviews and We Have A Hulk.  He currently runs his own business in between watching films.

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