“Non-Stop,” the latest in a seemingly, uh, non-stop series of action movies starring 60-year-old Liam Neeson as a world-beating badass- this time on a trans-Atlantic flight comes out this Friday. Shawn Kotzen will have a full review later today, but let me just say this, without spoiling any major plot points.
There’s a whole lot about the film – best described as “Snakes on a Plane, Minus the Snakes”- that doesn’t quite add up. The action sequences are an incomprehensible blur- even the poster is blurry. The movie also briefly raises various issues- the security state, racial profiling, police brutality- that it’s not remotely interested in exploring in the slightest.
The plot doesn’t even begin to hold together, and the ultimate reveal of the evil plan makes not a damn lick of sense- I really don’t remember the last time I was less convinced by the twist ending of the movie. The plot and filmmaking of “Non-Stop” will make viewers long for the clarity and realism of the later seasons of 24.
But there’s one moment that had me shaking on my head in absolute amazement. There’s one crucial moment in the film in which every TV screen on the plane suddenly turns on and, in perfect clarity, begins broadcasting a newscast, relating to the events of the plot. And the broadcast is by NY1.
NY1 is a local news station, in New York City. NY1 pops up in a lot of New York-based movies and TV shows as a local signifier. Infamously, it appeared in the abysmal Hayden Christiansen action film “Jumper,” when a character was somehow able to watch it despite living in Michigan.
But “Non-Stop” is set on a plane. They’re watching NY1, over the Atlantic. And not only that, but every passenger is watching it. No one opted for CNN instead? And it’s broadcast in complete clarity, on every screen!
I know the movie already hinges on the faulty premise of an airplane’s Wi-fi working perfectly enough for the bad guy to repeatedly text timed threats to the hero for two hours. But that NY1 thing is just one bridge too far.