Tuesday 15 March 2022

REVIEW: Blacklight (2022) Starring Liam Neeson, Emmy Raver-Lampman, Taylor John Smith and Aidan Quinn

Review by Jon Donnis
The film starts with a political activist called Sofia Flores, (Played by Melanie Jarnson), she is talking to a group of people about women's quality, racism etc. Your typical liberal activist. Later in the day she is killed in a hit and run, near to her home.

That is the juice for this story. In comes Travis Block, (played by Liam Neeson), Travis is a Vietnam War veteran who works for the Director of the FBI Gabriel Robinson, (Played by Aidan Quinn). Block is something of a "fixer" for the FBI Director, his job is to rescue or recover undercover agents who have either been made, or find themselves in a difficult to escape position. 

Blocks latest job is to bring in Dusty Crane, (played by Taylor John Smith). Block would rather retire and spend more time with his family, but the FBI director needs him. 

Dusty Crane has contacted Mira Jones, (played by Emmy Raver-Lampman), Jones is a journalist, and she is told that Dusty has information about the death of the political activist Sofia Flores.

Crane doesn't want to be brought in by Block, and manages to escape, he arranges a new meeting with the journalist, Block follows covertly, and when he tries to grab him, Crane is shot dead.

Block meets with the journalist; she fills him in on a top-secret project that goes after innocent people, including Flores. Block now has to put everything together, and track down who is responsible and expose all involved.

At this point Liam Neeson goes full "Taken" and you have pretty much what you would expect in a film featuring Liam Neeson. Lots of gravelly talking and a certain set of skills, and you instantly get the feeling that this is all very familiar. However that is not always a bad thing, we all love Liam Neeson for Taken, and although he is kind of type cast in that kind of role, I really don't mind.

At times it does feel like Neeson is phoning it in, but he hasn't quite gone down the Bruce Willis route yet.

This is an action film, and there are some good set pieces and some good action scenes. Car chases, explosions etc. Perhaps a bit paint by numbers, but if that is what you are looking for, then this film ticks enough of the boxes to fulfil the needs of a Liam Neeson fan.

The Good
Decent story, good quality acting all round, and some fun action scenes.

The Bad
I felt the end lacked something big, whether that was a twist, or some shocking moment.
Also the trailer gives away a lot of the plot, so avoid it unless you dont mind knowing too much.

It is Liam Neeson, he has a set of skills, and you know the rest.
Simple, straight forward action film, that doesn't surprise, but doesn't disappoint either.

I score Blacklight a fair 7/10

Out in cinemas in the US now.
Coming soon in the UK - Pre-Order it at https://amzn.to/3tcUFdu