A Walk Among the Tombstones is not the Taken knockoff that constitutes every action-star Liam Neeson vehicle since that surprise hit. Adapted from the Lawrence Block crime novel, A Walk Among the Tombstones stars Neeson as private investigator Matthew Scudder, who is hired by a drug dealer, Kenny Kristo (a nearly unrecognizable Dan Stevens, best known as the beloved, late Matthew Crawley), to track down his wife’s killers (David Harbour and Adam David Thompson). Like all of Neeson’s post-Taken characters, Scudder is a badass with problems, meaning the bad guys better watch out; as far as potential new franchise characters go, one could do worse than Scudder in the tough hands of Neeson.
A Walk Among the Tombstones is certainly dressed in genre duds, but it wears them well. What writer-director Scott Frank again does with this genre is as underrated as his 2007 directorial debut, The Lookout. This period piece also looks good in all its 1999 glory (i.e. flip phones, Backstreet Boys posters, the World Trade Center); it also feels tonally similar to the Max Payne video game (not the disappointing cinematic adaptation starring Mark Wahlberg), minus all the Norse mythology. Anticipate a grim throwback, and enjoy.