Taken for a ride – ★★
The way in which Liam Neeson comes by that gun he is holding in the above picture sums up Non-Stop. A daft cliched tale of misdirection and subterfuge. The slightly disconcerting thing is it seems to be a massive piece of propaganda for the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) in the USA (United States of America).
Neeson is an air marshal who has been hitting the sauce in an attempt to overcome a recent personnel issue. He dreads the thought of a six hour flight to London but he has his smokes, masking tape and stash of whiskey to keep him going. Julianne Moore plays his seat companion and the two seem to bond but can she be trusted? Can anyone be trusted when Neeson gets a text informing him that someone will die every 20 minutes unless they receive 150 million dollars?
We have the usual five to six suspects of any good murder mystery caper who are systematically dismissed, re-introduced and crossed off again. The director Jaume Collet-Serra’s previous work in horror, House of Wax and Orphan have fared him well in ramping up the suspense and tension and he even manages to squeeze in a “they’re not really dead” scene.
The film has a whole raft of characters from all walks of life who club together in an attempt to save the day, giving the message that we’re all in it together in the fight against terrorism. What the film says quite clearly at the end is that we really need all this security because the world is full of crazy people, so be afraid because the terrorist isn’t always going to be the Muslim or IRA terrorist (mentioned fleetingly in the film) it could be anyone of us. So thanks air marshals for doing a bang up job. We’ll still all be really afraid and put up with X-Ray security checks at our airports because terrorists are everywhere.