“What kind of person are you?”
The Commuter stars Liam Neeson and tells the story of Michael MacCauley, a man who has recently stumbled on some hard financial times. But as he rides the train home from work, a ride that he has taken for 10 years, a woman persuades him to help find a person with a mysterious bag that has never ridden that train before. Now Michael must decide whether to follow this strange woman’s orders, or run the risk that the lives of his family, and the members of the train, would be in jeopardy. There’s not much to say about The Commuter other than it’s a typical action movie flying on the coattails of Neeson’s mild success with the Taken movies. Neeson has now solidified himself as a mediocre action star, oddly having a cell phone conversation with said bad guys in every film. But none the less, let’s talk about The Commuter.
This movie has its moments of redemption, however they are few and far between. The story is centered around Michael’s family, which causes him to feel compelled to take the money that this mysterious Joanna woman has presented him with. But Michael soon gets cold feet, and with his background as an ex-cop, further investigates the situation and why these powerful people want this fellow commuter killed. This is a very simple plot. This same narrative has not only been done before, but it’s very similar to the same movies that Neeson has done in the past. Forgive me if I sound negative towards Neeson’s character choices, but I want to make it clear how ridiculously predictable this film is.
The characters in the film are small parts compared to Neeson’s “hard-hitting” character. Throughout the trailers, we were greeted with the presence of Vera Farmiga as she plays the mysterious Joanna. But after she fulfills her 5 minutes of onscreen time, she leaves the train and is never seen again. Farmiga is heard over the phone in key scenes, but is not seen. I would have liked to see more of her character, because every time she popped up on screen, she would add an ominous presence. Her character is vital to the story, but I wish she could have had more screen time. As opposed to Farmiga, I could tell you more about the other actors involved, not to mention the son who is most known for playing Tommen Baratheon on Game of Thrones. But if I were to describe, even just a sentence, of any of these characters, the story would sadly be ruined for you. No, this is Neeson’s show and he takes over like nobody’s business.
The Commuter is a rentable film that is no better than any of the mediocre action movies that come out nowadays. Each turn is predictable and each character is a disappointing. The movie is none other than The Conjuring meets an action movie. But don’t worry, no exorcisms will be performed in this film. Wait, you don’t know what I mean? Go see The Commuter, OR check out the cast on IMDB and save yourself the time and money.
Directed by: Jaume Collet-Serra
Starring: Liam Neeson, Vera Farmiga, and Patrick Wilson