Movie review: ‘Non-Stop’ is fast-paced and ridiculously plotted

By Sean P. Means

The Salt Lake Tribune

Published: February 28, 2014 12:09PM
Updated: March 10, 2014 05:00PM
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This image released by Universal Pictures shows Liam Neeson in a scene from "Non-Stop." (AP Photo/Universal Pictures)

Say this for the action thriller “Non-Stop”: It’s never boring — ludicrous and nonsensical, yes, but never boring.

Liam Neeson stars as Bill Marks, a frazzled federal air marshal who has issues with alcoholism and family. Marks boards a flight to London and soon receives text messages from someone threatening to kill a passenger every 20 minutes unless $150 million is transferred to a Swiss bank account.

As bodies start to accumulate, Marks must race against time to find the killer, keep the passengers from revolting, and convince the skeptical pilot (Linus Roache) and his TSA bosses on the ground that he’s not the hijacker. He finds help from a sharp flight attendant (Michelle Dockery, from “Downton Abbey”) and a plucky seatmate (Julianne Moore), but mostly this is Neeson in his familiar “one-against-the-world” mode.

Director Jaume Collet-Serra, who worked with Neeson on “Unknown,” keeps the action hopping and the claustrophobic tension building, which keeps viewers from noticing how ridiculous the plot really is.

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‘Non-Stop’

Opens today at theaters everywhere; rated PG-13 for intense sequences of action and violence, some language, sensuality and drug references; 106 minutes.