Think back, dear readers, to the far-off land of two weeks ago. A simpler time, to be sure, when we were all reading news items out of the Toronto International Film Festival instead of pondering the deeper political implications of professional football. Liam Neeson was present at that same festival, in town to promote his wordily-titled Deep Throat biopic Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down the White House, when he dropped the surprising tidbit that he was officially retiring from action pictures. (“I’m sixty-f**king-five. Audiences are eventually going to go, ‘Come on,’” was the exact quote.) 16 days have elapsed since then.

These must have been a particularly transformative 16 days, because Neeson has now reversed his original position and announced that, just kidding!, he’ll actually continue appearing in thrillers after all. Variety’s report from the official premiere of Mark Felt quoted the towering actor as laughing and saying, “It’s not true, look at me! You’re talking in the past tense. I’m going to be doing action movies until they bury me in the ground. I’m unretired.” Good thing, that Variety’s item clarifies his laughter, too, because those sound like words from a man resigned to a fate he cannot escape.

Think of it like this: Neeson’s an actor with a very particular set of skills. Skills he’s acquired over a very long career. Those skills include delivering serious monologues in an intense voice, looking sad about an assortment of dead wives, and punching people, animals, and the occasional inanimate object. He will find you, meaty action-picture roles for men in their sixties, and he will kill you.

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