Released: January 30, 2009
The now infamous Liam Neeson action franchise all started with a small film the studio dumped in January. After people started catching on, the film grew to obscene proportions, spawning two sequels. While those came off as crass and redundant, the original is a high energy thriller that never fails to entertain. Bryan Mills (Neeson) is a bodyguard with a certain set of skills who springs into action once his daughter (Maggie Grace) is kidnapped during a Europe trip. Neeson’s intense, committed acting made this such an infamous project and an unlikely action hero. The film veers from one kinetic action sequence to the next with wild abandon. It’s thrilling, especially if you turn your brain off. The greatest strength of the film is it knows how to build, as each punch and explosion is bigger, better and more exciting than the last.