The Liability (2012) starring Jack O'Connell, Tim Roth, Talulah Riley, Peter Mullan directed by Craig Viveiros Movie Review

The Liability (2012)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Tim Roth & Jack O'Connell in The Liability (2012)

Roth & O'Connell

Feckless 19 year old Adam (Jack O'Connell) finds himself in trouble with his stepfather Peter (Peter Mullan) when he writes off a Merc and thinks it's funny. What Adam doesn't realise is that his stepfather is a gangster involved in human trafficking and in order to pay off his debt has to do a day's driving for him. But the person he is driving is aging hitman Roy (Tim Roth) who has a series of jobs to do and not the sort of things which Adam is expecting as he is thrown into the dirty world of murder.

Laurel & Hardy, Little & Large, Cannon & Ball; they're all double acts and now there is another, Roth & O'Connell because at its heart "The Liability" is all about the double act of Roth & O'Connell with one playing a feckless young man, the other a killer who has been doing the job so long that chopping off a hand with an axe is just part of his day to day life. And it is an enjoyable double act because it is their poles apart responses to each other, the wide eyed look of O'Connell to Roth's matter of fact calmness which makes you laugh again and again especially during the grizzly scenes of gangster work.

The thing is that "The Liability" ends up all about that, the comic response of Adam to what Roy does, the fingers in his ears when Roy points a gun at someone rather than what happens or the nervous energy of Adam acting the fool as Roy just watches his idiocracy. And yes it is entertaining, in fact right from the word go when Adam crashes the car to Peter Mullan's menacing stepfather performance it is entertaining because of the set pieces but what actually happens is not what keeps you watching. It is the movie's one weakness because you end up beginning to wonder what the point of all this is other than to deliver numerous set pieces of chalk n cheese comedy.

What this all boils down to is that "The Liability" is entertaining, it will bring a smile to your face thanks to the chalk n cheese comedy with good performances throughout. But after a while you find yourself wanting more and it doesn't deliver it.