TARGET PRACTICE: THE MARKSMAN
Liam Neeson has become the new Clint Eastwood. His scripts, storylines often resemble the Dirty Harry icon's. One scene in Neeson's latest movie, The Marksman (2021), has his character, Jim Hanson, and a young boy watching a scene from Hang 'Em High (1968).
Fans of Neeson's action films won't be disappointed with this western. His Arizona rancher, loaded with flaws--he has been unable to recover from his late wife's death plus the downward spiral of his cattle ranch--has little faith in life. However, the former soldier and expert marksman must suck in his stomach, put down the bottle and help an orphaned Mexican boy. The child, who tried to enter the States illegally, has escaped from armed smugglers pursuing him because he witnessed his mother's murder.
Neeson never disappoints, even with a standard script and predictable plot. The supporting cast, including child actor Jacob Perez (a natural), stands their ground. Once the two principals go on the road, with Hanson's dog, the usual events unfold. One notable moment: the ending's twist may surprise the audience.
Just to see the ageless, though grizzled star on the screen, as large as the Arizona desert invites viewing. The Marksman leaves an impression because its star rises above the ordinary.
Rated PG-13 for blood, a few expletives, and violence. NOTE: animal lovers may not enjoy this movie.
Now showing on Hulu and available on DVD/Blu-Ray.
Earlier reviews not seen on this website (before May 20, 2021) are available on https://www.rottentomatoes.com/critic/wendy-shreve/movies or my previous blog site, featuringfilm.com
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