Run All Night stars Neeson, and Ed Harris. It is so good to see Harris back on the screen, I am willing to give Neeson a pass on the lack of thought on his role choices. Harris is one of Hollywood's greatest ever supporting actors. And he's great here too.
Run All Night is set in New York City with Neeson playing a broken down, drunken character named Jimmy Conlon. He is a retired hit man for a small time mobster named Sean Maguire (Harris). They were childhood friends. Jimmy carried out about 18 hits for Sean as an adult, and never faced any arrests. Sean had infiltrated the police force and had enough friends on the take to keep his illegal activities alive.
Sean's grown, but young son wants to make his mark in the family business, but wants to take it to a far higher level. Sean's balks. So when a drug deal starts to go bad with some foreign mobsters, Jimmy's grown son witnesses Sean's son murder 3 people. Then he turns his attention on killing all the witnesses, Jimmy shows up and kills Sean's son just as he is about to kill Jimmy's son.
Then the chase begins. Sean brings out all he has to try to kill Jimmy's son, and eventually Jimmy for revenge. Also, a dedicated cop (Vincent D' Onofrio) is after Jimmy as he wants closure for all of the unsolved murders Jimmy has committed. Plus, an awesome hit man (Common) is after Jimmy hired by Sean. Will Jimmy and son survive the night? Or will it all be too much to overcome?
This is not fantastic by any means. This looks like a lot of movies before it, and will become a staple TNT in a few years. But what this movie does have are a few really good actors. The scenes with Harris and Neeson simply acting and exchanging dialogue, even mediocre dialogue, are really strong. It is so good to see great acting, even in a movie that hangs its hat on action and violence. D'Onofrio is great as well, and it is refreshing to see him in a larger role than his past few movies. The scenes that have a combination of these three simply acting are easily the movies best.
This has a nice story, but not great. There is plenty of gun play and action and that's fine too. This is suspenseful to a point, but then becomes like 5,000 other movies released in various Februaries and Marches. And that is what you expect. But this does have moments of brilliance intertwined. The national critics are not being overly kind, but that may not be apt. There's nothing really wrong here, just nothing earth shaking.
Run All Night. Nothing wrong with this on a cool and wet spring day.