I had this review written up a long time ago, like back in August, and for some reason I never posted it. Not sure why. Haha. Anyway, here it is.
I’m going to say right now that of the two brothers, I’m partial to Chris as an actor. Liam has never really stood out to me as an actor; however, at the same time I don’t think he was so bad here. He didn’t surprise, but I wouldn’t go so far as to say that his acting was terrible.
My immediate thought while watching the movie and afterward, was that overall, I think if I was back in middle school or maybe in my first two years of high school, I would have thoroughly enjoyed this movie. In a lot of ways, the story felt really juvenile. I’ve heard that the book this is based on is a lot more exciting, but I can’t comment on it since I haven’t read it. Usually I’m inclined to read the book either before or after I’ve watched the movie adaptation of the story, but in this case, I wasn’t really interested in picking up the novel afterward.
Some of the story reminded me a lot of other movies I’ve seen in the past; the way the plot unfolded felt pretty formulaic. On the whole, I felt like you got what you saw from the trailers and nothing more. For some reason the whole bit about Liam’s character being under constant surveillance seemed extremely familiar to me. Perhaps I’m thinking Shia Lebouf’s Eagle Eye (2008) or Cellular (2004)? Of course, it’s been quite some time since I’ve seen either, so perhaps my mind is making inaccurate associations.
I think the one thing that annoyed me most was how easily Liam’s character just walked into all the traps; his character was like a more immature version of Peter Parker. There were also aspects of the plot that I found particularly unbelievable, like at the end. The way everything gets resolved made me raise my eyebrow a little, making me wonder if a character like that in real life with that much at stake would have really been so careless. Then again, I suppose it’s possible.
FINAL VERDICT: C-
A fair effort by Liam for what I believe is supposed to be his first major role? Forgive me if I’m wrong. Once again, I don’t follow him as closely as I do his older brother. It’s interesting though—it’s hard to say whether or not there’s potential for him as this is the only “major” role I’ve ever seen him in, if you don’t count his role in The Hunger Games movie franchise, so I feel like it’s hard to gauge whether or not he was at his full potential here at this point. Time will tell though, I’m sure.