Cold Pursuit sees Liam Neeson go from being a normal, married, nice bloke to a murderous vigilante as he brutally takes out drug dealers responsible for his son's murder. Yes, his son is dead rather than "taken", but this thriller has a familiar ring.
If you enjoyed the Taken franchise you'll feel similarly about this remake of a Norwegian film called In Order of Disappearance. Imagine Taken crossed with the dark humour of In Bruges and the wintery landscape of Fargo and you're on the right track.
The plot clips along at a good pace, the violence is visceral and endless, and the Colorado alpine setting visually stunning; but it's the cheeky sense of humour which wins you over. At first, I wasn't sure whether it meant to be funny, but a fast-rising body count and increasing levels of absurdity soon mean laughing out loud is perfectly appropriate.
Neeson plays Nels Coxman with a straight face. Nels is a snowplough driver and Citizen of the Year for his services to the community, who on learning the fate of his son turns into an unsuspecting killer. What Nels doesn't realise is his actions have begun a turf war between sociopathic drug lord Viking (Tom Bateman) and local Native American cocaine and antiquities dealer White Bull (Tom Jackson).
The turf war and its constant misunderstandings dominate Nels' storyline a little, but it's not such a bad thing. In a farce like this, the more the merrier and, really, there are only so many ways a snowplough can kill.
It's not just Neeson who plays it straight, other characters also ignore the fact they're in a comedy - except Bateman who overacts a little as violent vegan Viking.
But it's this straight comedic approach that's key to making Cold Pursuit such fun - vicious, barbaric fun.
Liam Neeson, Laura Dern
Hans Petter Moland
R16 (Violence, suicide themes, sexual references & offensive language)
Thrills, kills and plenty of lols.