I know this movie came out earlier in the year, but it still holds as one of my favorites for 2011 so far. “Unknown” starring Liam Nesson picks up where “Taken” left off in further solidifying Nesson as the ideal action/thriller hero for the new millennium! In the film Neeson plays the happily married Dr. Martin Harris, who while on vacation with his wife Elizabeth (played by actress January Jones) in Berlin, gets into a bad car accident. He winds up in a coma for 3 days, only to wake up in a hospital with no ID, his memories sorted and fuzzy and no real recollection of what happened during the accident! But oh the story gets better.
After Dr. Harris leaves the hospital to reunite with his wife back at their hotel, he is met with a startling revelation. Upon seeing his wife she has no idea who he is, and another man (played by actor Aidan Quinn) has assumed and taken his identity! Could you possibly imagine awaking from a coma after a few days, only for your spouse or loved one to tell you, you aren’t the person you claim to be, and someone else shows up taking your place? Creepy! So needless to say this is where the story gets juicy as Neeson goes on a dangerous journey filled with intrigue, suspense and a surprise end twist, to find out why his wife is denying him, along with this Dr. Harris impostor who has assumed his identity. Along the way Dr. Martin comes across a young lady Gina, who reluctantly agrees to help him, (played wonderfully by actress Diane Kruger). The two soon form a bond as individuals start to appear with the vengeful agenda of making sure that Dr. Harris doesn’t figure out why this mystery man has taken his wife and life as his own.
The action is nicely filmed at a steady pace so you really feel Martin’s anguish, confusion and despair as he frantically tries to piece together the mess that has become of his once seemingly perfect life! The drama that unfolds with each suspenseful turn, along with some edgy but not too loud or adrenaline overloaded sequences, help the action enhance and not overpower the over all mood of the film. Most viewers may or may not be aware of the comparisons critics have made about this film being a hybrid of sorts between Neeson’s 2008 film “Taken” and Matt Damon’s popular franchise “The Bourne Identity”. But the comparison is definitely accurate and well deserved. Although Neeson’s Dr. Harris may not seem quite as unapologetic and vicious as Damon’s “Bourne” character, the two characters are definitely similar in striving to find a sense of purpose and humanity even in the most inhumane and dire of circumstances.
Now please keep in mind that at the time I’m submitting this I have not had the pleasure of seeing some of the latest critic favorite films out presently (as of Wed. Sept. 14th) like “Contagion” or “Warrior”, so maybe by next week after I’ve seen them I would have felt differently lol! But I think the excitement within the suspense of “Unknown” mixed with Nesson’s performance make a strong enough case for my pick as “Unknown” for my favorite movie for 2011 so far! But hey rent it for yourself if you haven’t seen it already and decide for yourself. Till next time, be safe and stay blessed.