Whenever I walk into the cinema with a large popcorn, rest assured, I will not burrow to the bottom before the first inciting incident, if the film stars Liam Neeson. Non- Stop is no different. Neeson is like a fine wine that gets better with age. His outings in the Taken franchise have made movie-goers realise that a senior citizen can wield a gun, engage the audience and still create fast paced actions sequences. While doing this, he simultaneously makes Jason Bourne (Bourne Franchise) look like a zit-ridden teenager who is sulking because his parents haven’t given him his Friday night allowance. Non-Stop is another action film that continues giving box office lordship to Neeson.
When watching previous films I have always been slightly irritated (yes, that’s an understatement!) when, while trying to decipher intense plot points, I’ve not being able to read a character’s text messages clearly. The Post-Production in Non-Stop is of a high calibre and the production team developed an idea to display text messages on screen, as the action played out. This locked the intensity in the scene and prevented me from staring at Neeson’s phone the whole the time.
What gives this film an edge is that it is completely shrouded in mystery. The audience are constantly left questioning who they should trust and whether discarded suspects should come back under suspicion. Because the film is set on a plane in the post-911 political era, the film goes through many twists and turns. There are numerous interesting characters on this plane and because of the small space, it is impossible that nothing happens. A Flight Marshall with an inner battle (Neeson), a somewhat guarded, yet genuine passenger (Julianne Moore), a New York cop with a big mouth, a Muslim doctor and a showcase of others continue to gain and lose viewers’ trust.
The caviar of the Sandwich that is Non-Stop, is the casting. By casting, I actually mean Neeson. He fits the role of broken flight Marshall Bill Marks superbly. There is a scene where he fires a shot in the plane that defies the laws of physics when the plane is free falling. (Neeson might be portraying his character so well in that moment, Production wished for him to shoot out of this world.) What Neeson must also be given credit for, is his level of intensity and his ability to portray, through his acting, how bringing his emotional baggage on board the plane has led to a heightening of the situation. Neeson’s interactions with Julianne Moore add for interesting suspense as the plot thickens.
Though Non-Stop doesn’t quite live up to the Neeson greats such as Schindler’s List and Taken… Non-Stop is a piece a cinema that you can sink your teeth into and not feel disappointed.