Ben Oliver

Banner image for The Commuter

The Commuter

What’s in the bag?
08 April 2018

For reasons Unknown we’ve decided to watch all of the Liam Neeson action films he’s been making with Spanish director Jaime Collet-Serra, Non-Stop in one day. We went in alphabetical order so it all kicked off with their most recent effort The Commuter.

Liam is a family man and an ex-cop who commutes to work every day on the train. One day Vera Farmiga sits opposite him and offers him $100k if he can find a certain individual travelling on the same train, then plant a GPS tracker on their bag. Earlier that day he was fired from his job, which was just enough to get him to consider accepting the offer. Things go quickly off the rails.

This is some more solid work from Collet-Serra following on from The Shallows. It’s a simple enough premise but the execution is slick and stylish. The opening scenes in particular are some of the best, most efficient scene-setting work you’ll see in any film.

There’s a Hitchcockian feel to the way the every-man protagonist gets dropped into an unwinnable situation, but that does melt away once Liam starts smacking people in the face with a left handed guitar.

The Commuter is a dumb but nevertheless exciting thriller, perfect if you want some unpretentious fun that isn’t sloppily made.