Run All Night is the fourth Liam Neeson movie that used the formula of an ageing operative who was forced to take up arms again in order to save his family. We’ve seen this format in Taken 1 – 3, and Run All Night follows an almost similar style. The only difference with this one is that Liam is an anti-hero who used to work for the mob.
The original Taken was well received for two reasons. First, people don’t usually see something as original as a senior citizen bringing the fight to an entire syndicate. Second, the movie’s superb action sequences are enough to keep viewers at the edge of their seats. Run All Night lacks originality and its action sequences are few, making it inferior to Liam’s action trilogy. The only good thing about this movie is that its story has depth.
Liam Neeson plays the role of Jimmy “The Gravedigger” Conlon, a former mob henchman who became penniless in his golden years, possibly because of his drinking habits. His son Mike (Joel Kinnaman), a retired boxer who helps underprivileged kids at the local gym, is disgusted by his father’s past and refuses to involve him in his life.
Jimmy’s former boss, Shawn Maguire (Ed Harris), is a traditional mobster whose personality is similar to that of an old gangster who used to run casinos back in the 60s. Think of the cool, calm, and collected type of mob boss whose presence is scary enough to make grown men cry. Anyway, despite his frightening personality, he’s fair and maintains a good relationship with Jimmy. Everything’s well and good until Jimmy’s son and Shawn’s lad meet in a very awkward situation.
Mike was moonlighting as a chauffeur when he saw the death of his two Albanian clients in the hands of Shawn’s son Danny (Boyd Holbrook). Danny followed Mike and when the former was about to kill the latter (no witnesses, of course), Jimmy stepped in to save his son. Of course, Shawn’s mob family chased after Jimmy and Mike and the two literally ran all night in order to evade the attacks.
Run All Night, despite having less action and more talk, had some good scenes. The part where Jimmy and Mike are in the subway has to be one of the best scenes in the movie as it created a rhythm between the mob running after Jimmy and the cops pursuing Mike. The car chase was also nice, which was shot at close up for the audience to see the intensity of the actors’ expressions. The sequence at the lakeside was heartbreaking, but at the same time satisfying, as it perfectly rounded up the story.
The movie has just been released a few months ago but it’s now available on DVD and Blu-Ray. It is also up on sites like Flixter that offers rent or buy services to customers, and Google Play’s Movie & TV. The fact that people can watch this already on their smartphones shows that mobile is indeed “one of the fastest growing trends in the Internet landscape today,” as reported by the parent company of the Slingo site Spin Genie.
One of the best things about watching Run All Night via Google Play’s Movie & TV is that the movie only costs around $4, which is about half the price of a ticket for viewing it on the silver screen. It’s original, and people own it forever with just a single purchase. Google has a new device called Chromecast that allows people to watch movies from smartgadgets to TVs so it’s not so much of a loss for people who want to view their movies on huge screens.
Run All Night lasts for about 2 hours and many of its scenes could’ve been deleted to give way for more action. A little more grit and the movie would’ve been a worthy successor to the Taken franchise, what with its deep storyline and amazing set of actors.