HONEST THIEF honestly stole ninety minutes of my life. This is one of Liam Neeson’s low tier action thrillers, down there in the cold depths of hell with Taken 2 & 3. And those three are the only ones that I haven’t watched multiple times, as others such as Run All Night, A Walk Among The Tombstones, Cold Pursuit, The Commuter, Non-Stop, fuck.. even Unknown I’ve enjoyed more than one viewing. Honest Thief looked cheap and felt cheap, and there didn’t even seem to be an effort to cover the cheapness up. There is 5 second establishing shot that was obviously stock footage of an overview of a city and it was so God damn grainy, pixelated, and old looking that it looked as though it was shot in the mid-90s with a camcorder. I literally laughed out loud…at STOCK FOOTAGE. The film has an interesting idea, in which IMDB describes with the following: “Wanting to lead an honest life, a notorious bank robber turns himself in, only to be double-crossed by two ruthless FBI agents.” But the execution of it feels like a high end college student film, complete with one of the worst on screen explosions I have ever seen in the theater, the fire still crackling on the debris looking like an add on from a graphics computer still running on Windows 95. Scenes take way too much time and drag, Kate Walsh’s character is one of the biggest on screen morons of 2020, and that’s including the dumbest onscreen villains of 2020 so far. Yet somehow, this isn’t one of the worst films of the year, as it was still nice to see something in an actual movie theater, and I would take it over the fifty-something-odd piece of shit direct to streaming “films” I have had to endure because of the cocksucker known as COVID-19.
After Tenet and Broken Hearts Gallery, it seems like movies that were supposed to be in theaters are put into five categories:
- If a supposed theatrical release is pushed back multiple times, and we still have yet to see it, it is likely that movie is actually great.
- If a supposed theatrical release is dumped onto streaming with not much marketing behind it, and dumped for free along side the streaming service you already pay for, it is most likely a piece of shit.
- If a supposed theatrical release is dumped onto streaming with a shit ton of marketing, but it costs you an extra $20 to $30 bucks to either rent it for 48 hours or to own it, it is either great, or it’s a giant Mulan piece of shit.
- If a movie that was supposed to go straight to streaming, but then ends up snagging a theatrical release due to there being no new releases because New York Governor Andrew Cuomo keeps theaters closed in his state but restaurants and gyms open, and due to the fact he’s an egotistical moron on the spectrum…then that means the studios have no confidence in said film for even streaming and it’s probably a giant piece of shit.
- If a movie that was supposed to go theaters still makes its release date at this time, it’s either very meh or a giant piece of shit.
Honest Thief is easily a #5, riding that fence from either falling into a giant pile of regular soil or a giant pile of elephant shit. This should’ve been a direct to streaming movie in the first place. Both the five second grainy stock footage, Kate Walsh’s character, and the house explosion fall into the pile shit while the rest falls safely onto the soil for the rest of the movie. So….meh, but with a little shit on its lip if you wanted me to paint a clearer picture. Liam Neeson at least seems to be always game for all these kinds of films and never phones it in, and that is always appreciated, but everyone else, including recognizable faces Kate Walsh, Jeffrey Donovan, Robert Patrick, and Jai Courtney, seem bored, know what kind of film they’re in, and knows the paycheck coming at the end of it. I’m surprised Kate Walsh said yes to this picture. Her character is literally the most naive dumb ass I have seen in a film recently, and I’ve seen Hubie Halloween. There is this part of the movie where she comes upon and surprises the two dirty FBI agents loading boxes from her boyfriend’s (played by Neeson) storage garage, and even the most generic screenplay would have her character ask false questions and give false answers to see if the agents out right try to lie to her so she can tell Neeson what is going on. But no, she gives out all accurate information that they just agree to and just believes all their bullshit, even though the two actors playing the FBI agents looked bored and don’t even try to sell said bullshit. I slapped my head about 10 times in the theater during that 5 minute scene. The co-writer and director of this movie, Mark Williams, is more well known for being a halfway decent producer of television projects, like Ozark, not writing and directing feature films, hell, not writing and directing at all. He should go back to just producing, as he doesn’t know what the fuck he is doing. This movie is as generic as a generic film can get, let alone a Liam Neeson actioner. It stole my interest with a misleading marketing campaign and theatrical trailer that looked action heavy, and instead was just a straight and cheap drama with a couple of action beats that would honestly make Michael Bay want to kill himself.