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March 15, 2014 | 11:58 a.m. CST
Liam Neeson just loves playing a threatening, yelling, gun-slinging middle-aged man. Although flying over international waters and demanding where something is (not his daughter, this time) is involved, this action film isn’t another Taken.
Bill Marks (Neeson) is an alcoholic air marshal just trying to get through a trans-Atlantic flight to London without incident. However, that’s quickly ruined when Marks receives a series of cryptic texts to his air marshal phone requiring him to get $150 million in a bank account or someone on the flight will be killed every 20 minutes that the money isn’t in the account.
Shaky and paranoid, Marks recruits fellow passenger Jen Summers (Julianne Moore) and British flight attendants Nancy (Downton Abbey’s Michelle Dockery) and Gwen (12 Years a Slave’s Lupita Nyong’o) to assist him in finding the terrorist.
But it’s not that easy. The mysterious terrorist has thought of everything—including where to place the blame. The off-shore bank account is under Marks’ name and his unstable temper and aggressive man-handling of a passenger goes viral. So, the entire country and the plane’s passengers believe that Marks, the only man with a gun on the plane, has taken it and its passengers hostage.
Spanish director Jaume Collet-Serra has worked with Neeson before in the action-thriller flop Unknown (2011), but he’s finally using Neeson to his full advantage and hit his stride in suspense. Collet-Serra was the mastermind behind the suspsense-horror film The Orphan (2009), which is known for its shocking ending.
Non-Stop’s ending is unpredictable. Viewers will be switching their guesses of who the true villain is up until the last five minutes. Wait to see this on DVD so you can discuss with friends who you think is holding the plane hostage without angering movie theatre-goers with your whispers.