Director: Hans Petter Moland
Cast: Liam Neeson, Tom Bateman, Tom Jackson
Release Date: May 14, 2019
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 8/10
Disc Rating: 8/10
Featuring a wildly entertaining mix of dynamic action and dark humor, Cold Pursuit stars Liam Neeson as Nels Coxman, a snowplow driver whose quiet family life is upended after his son’s murder. Nels begins a vengeful hunt for Viking, the drug lord he holds responsible for the killing, eliminating Viking’s associates one by one. As Nels draws closer to Viking, his actions bring even more unexpected and violent consequences, as he proves that revenge is all in the execution.
‘Cold Pursuit’ tells the story of loving family man and notable community do-gooder Nels Coxman (Neeson) who finds himself struggling to move on after the loss of his son from an apparent drug overdose. Unable to believe that his son was an addict, Nels can’t help but expect fowl play, and when he finally uncovers the truth behind his son’s murder, he opts for taking matters into his own hands. Using the snowy, wintery landscapes he knows better than anyone to his advantage and largely just winging it, Nels begins eliminating those involved one by one, slowly building his way to the person behind everything. Even while the man he seeks may be more deadly and connected than he had anticipated, nothing will stop him from getting his revenge or at least dying in the attempt.
Directed by Hans Petter Moland (A Somewhat Gentle Man) from a screenplay by first time screenwriter Frank Baldwin which was based upon the movie ‘Kraftidioten’ written by Kim Fupz Aakeson respectively, Hans Petter Moland does a more than competent job at the helm of ‘Cold Pursuit’ smoothly guiding along this wickedly fun and funny revenge tale. The film also benefits from a capable cast that includes Liam Neeson (The Commuter), Tom Bateman (Murder On The Orient Express), Tom Jackson (Skinwalkers), Emmy Rossum (TV’s Shameless), Laura Dern (TV’s Big Little Lies), William Forsythe (The Devil’s Rejects), Domenick Lombardozzi (TV’s Ray Donovan) and more, with the majority offering generally solid performances for the most part in each of their respective roles.
‘Cold Pursuit’ is a violent, fun and darkly hilarious revenge film that keeps much of the general activity to the basics, while also making itself stand out with its wicked and often demented sense of humor and a bright and sparse snowy landscape to play within which makes for a perfect contrast to the overall dark nature of the tale it encompasses. Featuring Liam Neeson in another take-no-prisoners vengeance outing that feels awfully familiar in some respects, while differing in slight degrees elsewhere (such as his inexperience with it all in this film), yet nonetheless offering up plenty of explosive and swiftly paced violent fun throughout that shouldn’t disappoint fans of his work in the action genre by any means, or action fans in general who are all likely to have quite a bit of fun with ‘Cold Pursuit’. I would definitely encourage trying to give the movie a chance if you tend to enjoy a fun little revenge oriented action flick with a fairly dark sense of humor, or if you’re merely a fan of Liam Neeson doing his hard-hitting action star thing. It’s a surprisingly hilarious and somewhat twisted little tale that isn’t necessarily what you might initially expect it to be, but only manages to continually impress as a result and is well worth taking the time to check out.
Overall, ‘Cold Pursuit’ is a fast paced and action filled ride with a splendidly twisted sense of humor and an expansive snowy landscape for all of the violent fun to play out beautifully. It’s a satisfying and incredibly fun action-packed revenge tale that plays by many familiar genre rules, while never hesitating to also poke some humorous fun at it all. ‘Cold Pursuit’ is highly recommended, especially for fans of Liam Neeson as well as anyone that enjoys action-revenge flicks and can also appreciate a notably dark sense of humor that isn’t afraid to have some fun with the violent and gloomy content it focuses on. If you’re already even mildly interested in this one then there’s a pretty good chance it will at least prove worthy of a couple hours of your time and the few bucks it might set you back for a rental.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Cold Pursuit’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 2.39:1 Cinemascope Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks wonderful as a whole and provides a sharp, clean and richly detailed presentation from start to finish with no notable faults to be found along the way. It holds up smoothly even during fast moving moments and the occasional darkly lit sequences, never causing anything occurring on screen to become negatively affected or rendered indiscernible. Overall, this is a great high definition video presentation from Lionsgate that should more than please fans of the film.
The Blu-ray release features a Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 channel compatible) soundtrack. Please note that this review pertains solely to the Dolby TrueHD 7.1 audio presentation. This multichannel soundtrack compliments the onscreen fun beautifully and delivers a crisp, clean and quite aggressive audio presentation throughout. It regularly takes full advantage of all seven available channels in order to send some action effects, along with crowd chatter, nature elements and more throughout the various speakers quite frequently, and never conflicting with any dialogue or other audio elements that might be occurring simultaneously. Overall, this is a wonderful Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 compatible) soundtrack that delivers from start to finish and sounds fantastic throughout.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Cold Pursuit’ includes a few noteworthy extras that fans of the film should enjoy. Included on the release is a collection of ‘Deleted Scenes’ from the movie (running approximately 5 minutes in length altogether), in addition to the Behind the Scenes Featurette ‘Welcome To Kehoe: Behind the Scenes on Cold Pursuit’ (running approximately 27 minutes) which features a look at bringing the film to life and includes interviews/comments with the cast and crew, plus behind the scenes footage and more. Also included on the release is an ‘Interview with Actor Liam Neeson’ (approximately 9 minutes), an ‘Interview with Director Hans Petter Moland’ (8 minutes) and the ‘Theatrical Trailer’ (1 minute) for the film.