Meet Liam Neeson, as Air Marshal Bill Marks, a recovering alcoholic – aggressive, confrontational and stubborn, and with a strong Northern Irish accent. He is grieving from the loss of his eight year old daughter.
Add Michelle Dockery, from Downton Abbey, Nat Parker from The Great Debate, Julianne Moore, from Hunger Games, and Scot McNairy from 12 years a Slave and we are not short of talent.
Liam Neeson's character starts getting text messages telling him that one passenger will die every twenty minutes unless $150 million is transferred into an off-shore account. Problem is – that account belongs to (you've guessed it) Air Marshal Bill Marks.
Non-Stop" is a good name for most of the movie. It is edge of the seat stuff, and keeps us guessing right up to the end. Who will be the next victim? Who is "framing" Neeson and why? Will the passengers revolt against Neeson – they think he had hi-jacked the plane. Who are the villains – the knock-out red-head, the demure stewardess,the belligerent passenger, the New York policeman – or could it be that Neeson himself really is the villain? What are the contents of the mysterious briefcase the marshal has taken on board? Will the fighter planes (to avoid another 9/11) really shoot down the plane?
It's just as well there are a lot of questions, and a lot of action – it helps us overlook the thin-ness of the plot.
Initially I felt that this film was going to be the best of its type that I'd seen. By the end I wasn't so sure – too much cheesiness, too many improbabilities.
But in the end, I'm not sure that matters.
Great acting – Neeson in particular is superb – rescues the weaknesses.
If what you want is an action movie, then that is what you get – Non-Stop.