Liam Neeson’s New Action Thriller Breaks A Rotten Tomatoes Streak That Lasted 4 Years

Liam Neeson’s New Action Thriller Breaks A Rotten Tomatoes Streak That Lasted 4 Years

Summary

  • Liam Neeson’s new movie breaks his Rotten Tomatoes streak that consisted of eight straight movies deemed “Rotten.”
  • In the Land of Saints and Sinners
    could become one of Neeson’s best action movies, showcasing his impressive status as an action star at 71.
  • Neeson has more action/thriller genre films on the way, as well as a role in the upcoming
    Naked Gun
    remake, demonstrating his versatility and willingness to explore new roles.



Liam Neeson’s new movie In the Land of Saints and Sinners has broken the actor’s eight-movie Rotten Tomatoes streak, which lasted four years. The Northern Irish actor reinvented himself as an action hero when he starred in Pierre Morel’s action-thriller Taken in 2008. Since then, the Oscar nominee has appeared in numerous action, crime, and thriller movies, with the most recent being his second collaboration with director Robert Lorenz, the thriller In the Land of Saints and Sinners. It follows Neeson as a world-weary assassin seeking redemption in the Irish wilderness, whose past comes back to haunt him.


The movie, which features an ensemble cast including Kerry Condon, Ciarán Hinds, Colm Meaney, and Jack Gleeson, has received critical acclaim. According to Rotten Tomatoes, the film is currently certified “Fresh,” scoring 78% based on 36 reviews. If it stays “Fresh” as more reviews get tabulated, it will break the recent streak of poorly-reviewed movies from the Schindler’s List star. Specificaly, Neeson has had a string of eight consecutive movies over a four-year period that were certified “Rotten” since 2020. Check out the scores of those eight movies below:

Liam Neeson Movies

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score

Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

Made In Italy (2020)

43%

39%

Honest Thief (2020)

41%

87%

The Marksman (2021)

38%

83%

The Ice Road (2021)

44%

31%

Blacklight (2022)

11%

82%

Memory (2022)

29%

81%

Marlowe (2022)

26%

37%

Retribution (2023)

29%

66%



The Action Genre Isn’t Responsible For Liam Neeson’s Rotten Tomatoes Slump

Liam Neeson Has Earned Several Fresh Scores For Action Movies In The Past

Although many titles from this grim Rotten Tomatoes streak are action movies, the genre itself isn’t responsible for his slump. Quite a few prohects featuring Liam Neeson action heroes have had strong critical reception in the past. This kicked off, just like his commercial success in the genre, in 2008 with the release of Taken, which earned a score of 60% on Rotten Tomatoes in addition to earning $226.8 million against its $25 million budget, becoming the 28th highest-grossing movie of the year worldwide.


Action and thriller movies have dominated both the highs and the lows of the star’s recent career. This includes the 2018 thriller Widows, which is Neeson’s seventh-highest-rated narrative movie of all time on Rotten Tomatoes with a Certified Fresh score of 91%, falling just behind huge hits including Schindler’s List (98%) and The Lego Movie (96%). Below, check out the other recent action and thriller titles that have performed well for the star since 2008:

Title

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score

Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score

Taken (2008)

60%

85%

The Grey (2012)

80%

61%

Non-Stop (2014)

62%

63%

A Walk Among the Tombstones (2014)

68%

53%

Widows (2018)

91%

61%

Cold Pursuit (2019)

68%

49%

In the Land of Saints and Sinners (2024)

76%

TBD


It’s entirely possible that Neeson’s recent streak has been the result of diminishing returns in audience interest in seeing the star lead action movies. However, this strong result for his new movie could indicate that both critics and audiences are taking his genre movies on a case-by-case basis and these scores are merely based on those titles’ relative merits. If that is the case, the future could be very bright for the star.

Does In The Land Of Saints And Sinners Mark Another Career Revival For Neeson?

Neeson Has More Action/Thriller Movies On The Way As Well As The Naked Gun Remake

It remains to be seen how much longer Neeson will conduct movies in the action genre, but there will be hope that more of them can rate as highly as
In the Land of Saints and Sinners
.


Neeson’s recent movies have been fairly well received by audiences for the most part, but they certainly lack the critical acclaim of some of his earlier work. The positive reception for In the Land of Saints and Sinners means it could eventually become one of Liam Neeson’s best action movies and potentially mark a return to form for the star, who has carved out a successful niche in the action-thriller genre, but has also endured a string of critical and commercial flops in recent times.


Standing out in the genre can be a challenge, so Neeson’s status as an action star is all the more impressive due to his age. The established and respected 71-year-old actor has the luxury to pick and choose whichever projects he wishes to do, and his clear devotion to the action genre has allowed him to thrive in these kinds of movies. It remains to be seen how much longer Neeson will take on movies in the action genre, but there will be hope that more of them can rate as highly as In the Land of Saints and Sinners.

The Ice Road 2
and
Cold Storage
are Neeson’s upcoming movies currently in production, while
Thugs
is in post-production.

The versatile actor is well-known for reinventing himself and taking his career in unexpected directions, and he could do the same again with the upcoming Naked Gun remake, in which he’s set to star. The movie represents a departure from the action-thriller genre into more comedic territory and will be Neeson’s first major comedy leading role. While the wait for the remake continues, there is at least no shortage of Neeson movies coming to theaters with In the Land of Saints and Sinners being the latest thrilling experience.


Source: Rotten Tomatoes

In the Land of Saints and Sinners Movie Poster

In the Land of Saints and Sinners

In the Land of Saints and Sinners is an action crime thriller directed by Robert Lorenz and stars Liam Neeson as former assassin Finbar Murphy, who is in retirement and looking to leave his hitman days behind him. When Murphy’s peaceful Irish town is rocked by terrorists who have begun abusing the locals, he slips back into his old ways to deal with them, all while trying to keep his identity a secret from those around him.

Director
Robert Lorenz

Release Date
September 15, 2023

Studio(s)
Facing East , RagBag Pictures , Prodigal Films Limited

Distributor(s)
Netflix

Writers
Terry Loane , Mark Michael McNally

Runtime
106 Minutes

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