(SPOILER WARNING!!! This article does contain spoilers, if you haven’t seen the movie, just see the first paragraph to be informed without spoilers!!!)
A Walk Among the Tombstones is a dark and creepy thriller, it may have some cliches and predictability, but an entertaining detective mystery movie that is subtly funny. Rating 4 Stars out of 5.
I’m a big fan of detective mystery movies. Especially the down to earth ones like The Bone Collector, Seven, and Prisoners. I think the reason I like them so much is because it has a dark tone and how creepily insane people can be. This type of movie are true hotter films for me, because these type of scenarios and sick freaks actually do exist and that is a scary thought. Some of those movies can be too sickly twisted, like 8MM for example, that you never want to go through it again. Then you get the real good ones like Seven, creepy but entertaining. Bottomline, when everything is quiet while the movie is going on, and you feel you’re on the edge of your seat, the movie has succeeded for your entertainment. A Walk Among the Tombstones had that affect on me. I will start with what I like, to the so so, to what I didn’t like.
What I liked, director Scott Frank really creates a dark tone in this movie. It is always gloomy and rainy which sets the mood down for the audience which bodes well for this type a movie. You can tell that not everybody is in the best of moods during the movie, and it will probably not end happily ever after. Liam Neeson playing a retired detective who does underground work, Matt Scudder. Neeson too me put on his best performance since Taken. He acted like he is recovering from any inner demons he had left in him, and doing what is right even though he is not an official detective anymore. I liked that he is a sarcastic smart mouth person. In any conversation he has, he was subtly funny in a situation which really is no laughing matter. Neeson had me chuckling a lot at the beginning of the movie. I love the conversations he had with the kid TJ, played by Brian “Astro” Bradley, a homeless orphan who befriends Scudder and helps him with his investigation. Their conversations were very witty and it shows how sarcastic they are, yet they respect one another even though they are two completely different types of people. Scudder pretty much became a father figure to TJ of some sort, and that brings some good in a otherwise dark movie. Probably the darkest and creepiest part are the two psychotic villains in the movie. Two guys named Ray and Howie, played by David Harbour and Eric Nelson. These two were creepy sick guys who like to torture and kill women by chopping them up, but they were smart cuz they extort people they kidnapped for money and still use their sick fetish in their murder schemes. They were creepy, and was relieved once they killed. The story is a good story involving mystery, revenge, and horror that keeps you engaged through the whole movie, and really wanting to find out what is going to happen.
The so so, the movie did have some cliches, and those who know me knows I hate cliches in movies. One which is a funny one tow is the creepy guy who stays in the roof taking care of pidgeons cliche (more on that later). However, one cliche that did bother me is the climax of Scudder’s character development on why he is a retired cop is because he was drunk and accidentally shot a kid while chasing some robbers on the street. It does lead to why he stops drinking and is better for it now, but I thought they could’ve come with something more original. The movie was predictable a little bit. I knew that somehow Scudder, TJ, the bad villains, and the guy who hired him in the first place, Kenny Kristo, played by Dan Stevens, were all gonna be part of the climax of the movie and that Kristo will be killed somehow. But that kind of predictability didn’t bother me to not enjoy the movie. The climax was still interesting nonetheless.
What I didn’t like, just one thing that I hate in movies is when the trailer shows a part in the movie where when it does happen in the movie, the element of surprise is gone. That part was when the creepy bird man on the roof, James Loogen, played by Olafur Dari Olafssom, told who are the psychotic villains and what they did, and jumped off the roof to commit suicide. If I didn’t see that in the trailer, that moment would’ve been a shocker, but instead, I knew when it was going to happen, and it ruined the moment for me. I hate it when trailers do that to your viewing pleasure.
Overall, if your heart and mind can withstand the darkness, creepiness, and sickness of this movie, it is very entertaining to watch. Especially if you love a good detective mystery. It can twist your mind in knowing psychotic people are real in this world, but justice prevails. Final Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars.
(Sidenote- Heaven is for Real: This is a true Christian movie about a kid who had a vision that he went to Heaven and saw Jesus while being close to dying during surgery, and how it affected his family and church. It starred Greg Kinnear as Reverend Todd Burpo. This touch the Baptist belief of life immediately after death and plays a part of what is true to faith in God and fanaticism. I believe this movie is more inspirational than proving their main point of what this is all about and lacked substance in their argument or point. At least Burpo’s sermon at the end can make us think and believe that there is a God and Heaven to give us that hope for the future. Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars.)