Blacklight (2022)

Blacklight.

"Granpa, are you a good guy?"

Liam Neeson is back with another action thriller that feels like many other films, some of those films starring Neeson himself. Look you can't go wrong with Neeson as your guy in an action film, he has the charm and charisma of an action star, aging action star. However, despite Neeson's charm, Blacklight could not be saved.

It's a film with so much potential, in terms of themes and hell even characters, it's just failed by the writing, direction and sloppy editing in some places. Don't get me wrong I enjoyed watching this film, it felt familiar and it's got tons of action, with some nice sequences where Neeson's age catches up to him and the film recognizes that, its also got a good car chase. So there's a lot to keep you entertained when it's in action mode.

The problem comes when the film really has to lay it out for you on the floor, I found that it struggled a bit with it's themes, all the political stuff and the bureaucracy elements and tying all that up with the core character and the emotions at play. It felt like two separate yet similar entities trying to merge but neither knows what to do or how to do it.

It had all these wonderful ideas about the FBI, spies, freedom of speech and blah blah blah, and on the other hand, it had this aging fixer guy who wants out. The film never really commits to either, the themes are half asses and so is the writing of the characters. There's moments in the film that feel sloppy because of the way it was cut. In some scenes the pacing becomes rushed and we notice that it cut major parts of the dialogue or scene but whatever.

Overall, this could have been a really inventive political action thriller only if it had focused and just worked really hard on fleshing the story and characters out because the ingredients were all there. Though I did enjoy it, because man Neeson is charming and the movie moved quickly and hey it is what it is.