Sometimes, “serviceable” is good enough.
Whether that’s the case with “Last Seen Alive” is up to you.
Gerard Butler stars in actioners and thrillers, so you already know just about what you’re getting into when you see he’s the star of this film.
If the trailer reminds you of “Taken,” I wouldn’t be surprised – it reminded me of that movie, too. It has a similar theme: A man in search of a loved one who goes missing has very little to guide him except his wits.
Butler is Will, a property developer who has a troubled marriage. He and his wife Lisa (Jaimie Alexander, “Thor”) are going through a separation. We see the two ride along together while he takes her to her parents’ home so she and Will can have some time apart.
They stop for gas at a convenience store. And, almost in the wink of an eye, she disappears.
The disappearance itself is unsettling and realistic. It’s cleverly wrought, with Will completely perplexed and panicky about what happened, and everyone around him appearing to waste his time with questions about his personal life or reassurances that everything is just fine.
Russell Hornsby (“The Hate U Give”) is quite convincing as the detective who is suspicious about Will. Ethan Embry (“The Devil’s Candy”) is enjoyable, too, as a character named Knuckles (kudos to the screenwriter who came up with that.)
Butler once again is the tough-guy action hero who will stop at nothing until he gets the information he wants.
There are a couple of contrivances and cartoon-ish characters, but there is some decent action, too. It balances out to an average movie that never overstays its welcome.
Streaming on Retro Movie Theater, Prime Video, Vudu Movie & TV Store, Redbox. or VUDU on a Roku device.
Rated: R for foul language and violence.
Running time: One hour and 35 minutes.