Everyone’s favourite veteran action star, Liam Neeson, is back with another movie of the same genre, with a twist of black comedy.
In Neeson’s latest endeavor ‘Cold Pursuit
’, he plays yet another father figure, Nels Coxman, who seeks revenge after discovering that his son’s death, which doctors had concluded as a heroine overdose, was actually caused by a local drug lord.
Coxman works as a snow plough driver in a small, quiet and freezing cold town up into the mountains called Kehoe. As soon as he receives more intel about his son’s murder, he takes matters into his own hands and literally takes out gang members of the drug cartel one by one, while hunting down the leader himself, Trevor “Viking” Calcote (Tom Bateman).
Neeson described that his character opens up a whole can of worms without realising what he is getting himself into because the one thing clouding his mind is vengeance.
“He thinks he’s going after one guy who killed his son. In actual fact, it all escalates into a whirlwind of vengeance and violence,” he explained.
With the increasing pile of corpses, Coxman’s one-man show escalates into a turf war between Viking and his long-time enemy White Bull (Tom Jackson), who runs his own gang of Native-American mafia.
Having said that, here’s what we think about ‘Cold Pursuit’
Despite sounding eerily similar to the likes of ‘The Commuter’ and the whole ‘Taken’ franchise, basically characters the old man cannot seem to shake off, ‘Cold Pursuit’ goes off the beaten path.
The film essentially follows the story of three fathers and their sons with strong emphasis on the consequences of violence. We’re talking about heavy machinery and blood splats.
We’ll leave the rest of the violence to your imagination, at least until you see it for yourself. This “leaving to the audience’s imagination” element is also what we like in throughout the storyline.
Director Hans Peter Moland went with a plot that is easy to follow by remaking his own Norwegian original, ‘In Order of Disappearance’.
There are many scenes that don’t require much describing or explaining for you to understand what is going on. We appreciate movies like this because it makes the story less draggy and complicated. It also shows that the director acknowledges the fact that movie-goers are not stupid.
The Twisted Humour
As mentioned, ‘Cold Pursuit’ is categorised as an action that infuses black comedy, which is a type of movie that picks on taboo subjects like death, murder and crime in a satirical manner.
The tongue-in-cheek approach of this film is quite clever, giving it a fresh take on vigilante thrillers. Beginning with how a humble snow plough driver like Coxman learned to actually murder a person without leaving a single trace? By following what he read in a crime novel.
Watch out for the title cards following each death. Our cinema hall burst out laughing after a few
There are also themes touching on social, racial, sexual and gender stereotypes that will come to you unexpectedly in twisted humour fashion.
Liam Neeson and the Gang
Now, you may have rolled your eyes after watching the trailer or reading the synopsis of ‘Cold Pursuit’ because it is basically every other Liam Neeson movie.
Nevertheless, his performance is undeniable, even at 66 years old – which makes you question: When will they learn to leave this old man and his on-screen kids alone?
Bateman’s acting as a drug lord is also commendable, given his contrasting character behaving like a psychotic child while dressed in an expensive neat suit.
Also, Jackson’s quiet skills portraying a Native-American will bring a newfound appreciation of this sometimes-forgotten community to the international audience.
Overall, we do admire the movie’s efforts to be one-of-a-kind. Our best advice is for you to throw out any impression you had about Neeson’s past films (especially ‘Taken’) and embrace ‘Cold Pursuit’ for what it is.
After all, this will be the veteran actor’s last action movie. So, enjoy it while it lasts.
‘Cold Pursuit’ is now out in theatres across Malaysia.