Review Lift (2024)

Lift (2024)

Lift ” as described, epitomizes the challenges faced by the current era of action cinema, especially within the confines of streaming platforms like Netflix. These platforms, with their insatiable need for content, often churn out films that prioritize high concepts and star power over narrative depth and character development. “Lift” appears to fall squarely into this category, offering the kind of spectacle that might initially attract viewers but ultimately leaves little lasting impact.

F. Gary Gray, a director known for helming engaging and dynamic action films, seems to have missed the mark with “Lift.” The premise of assembling a team of specialists for a high-stakes heist aboard a commercial airliner is ripe with potential. However, the execution, as described, leans heavily into formula without injecting the freshness or depth necessary to stand out in a crowded market. Kevin Hart’s departure from his typical comedic persona could have been a unique selling point, yet the film fails to capitalize on this by providing a compelling narrative or character arc.


The comparison to “Red Notice ” and ” The Gray Man” is telling, highlighting a trend where the allure of the concept and the ensemble cast supersedes the substance of the story and character development. This trend reflects a broader issue within the industry, where the rush to satisfy content demands leads to a proliferation of films that are visually polished but lacking in emotional resonance and originality.

The critique of the special effects and their detachment from reality further underscores a growing audience fatigue with action sequences that prioritize flash over physics. The best action films integrate set pieces seamlessly into the narrative, enhancing the stakes and character development rather than serving as mere spectacle.


Billy Magnussen’s performance as the safecracker, Magnus, points to a missed opportunity for “Lift.” When a supporting character’s eccentricity becomes a highlight, it suggests that the film could have benefited from a stronger focus on character quirks and interactions, potentially providing the memorable moments and emotional investment that the rest of the film lacks.

Ultimately, “Lift” serves as a reminder of the delicate balance required to craft a successful action film. It’s not enough to assemble a star-studded cast or devise a high-concept heist. Without a solid foundation of character depth, narrative stakes, and a sense of place and purpose, even the most dazzling action sequences can feel hollow. As streaming platforms continue to dominate the entertainment landscape, one hopes for a more discerning approach to action cinema, one that values storytelling as much as spectacle.

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