by David Schuster
Ever since big names like Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis and Jean Claude Van Damm got a bit long in the tooth to making action movies there has been a battle to fill the void. And into the fray over the last year has been Liam Neeson. Not exactly the action star person you would expect but with last years “Taken” and now the recent release “Unknown” Neeson has proven to be a pretty sure box office attraction.
“Unknown” is a throw back to the old Alfred Hitchcock movies with suspense and surprise around every corner. Neeson feels like Cary Grant or Jimmy Stewart who were prominent in Hitchcock movies but he also adds a few hundred karate chops and punches to the face. The story in this movie is a bit implausible but the action and the suspense more then make up for it.
Neeson is a bio chemist on his way to a conference in Berlin. At least you think he is a bio chemist and so does he but as the movie unwinds the truth comes out. He is married to a beautiful blond (January Jones from the TV show “Mad Men”) who is both seductive and mysterious. Neeson is then involved in an accident but is saved by another beautiful blond (Diane Kruger) who helps him try and piece together the building mystery.
Along the way we get former East German spies, assassins and a lot of people who just aren’t who they appear to be. But the movie is built around Neeson who is far removed from the role he played in “Schindler’s List” (Fantastic movie). You always wonder if guys like him and Matt Damon (Jason Bourne) can really fight like this in real life and the answer is NO WAY.
Hitchcock would have been proud of a movie like this because it was right up his alley. Intrigue, suspense, surprises, hot women and violence and I give it – a triple – three stars.