This obscure Liam Neeson vs. James Bond movie is a new Netflix hit. Here’s why you should watch it

If you’ve never heard of the Western Seraphim Falls, then you’re not alone. The film barely had a limited theatrical release in 2006 before it spent the better part of two decades in cinematic purgatory. Or at least that was true before Netflix added it to its film library. Now, all of a sudden, Seraphim Falls is one of the most popular movies on Netflix.

By itself, that’s not too surprising. Liam Neeson has proven to be very popular with Netflix subscribers, and another one of his lesser-known movies, Made In Italy, is also currently in Netflix’s top 10 movie list. But if you’re trying to decide whether this particular Western will appeal to you, we’re sharing three reasons why you should watch Neeson’s Seraphim Falls on Netflix.

It features two action icons facing off

Pierce Brosnan and Liam Neeson in Seraphim Falls.
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

At the time that Seraphim Falls was released in 2006, it had only been four years since Pierce Brosnan’s final appearance as James Bond in 2002’s Die Another Day. As for Neeson, this film came out four years before he reinvented himself as an action icon in Taken, and he’s been headlining action movies ever since.

The combined pedigrees of Neeson and Brosnan didn’t attract a wide audience to Seraphim Falls, and the film itself only had a limited release over the course of six weeks. That’s why it’s been such an obscure title for close to two decades. However, its newfound popularity on Netflix suggests that the pairing of Neeson and Brosnan is even more enticing now than it was in 2006. That also leads into the next reason for this movie’s resurgence.

Neeson and Brosnan give compelling performances

Liam Neeson in Seraphim Falls.
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

This film wouldn’t work if audiences couldn’t buy into the characters that Neeson and Brosnan play on-screen. Neeson’s Colonel Morsman Carver is a man consumed by a desire to avenge himself by killing Brosnan’s Gideon. Whatever humanity Carver had before their feud has seemingly been set aside, and he is now nothing without his revenge.

As for Gideon, he’s a broken man haunted by his guilt. And yet he doesn’t just sit back and do nothing as Carver and his posse pursue him. Gideon fights back and he even picks off many of his pursuers in intriguing ways. But long before we know what Gideon did to inspire such hatred from Carver, it’s very easy to believe these man have a history that will ultimately destroy them. Neeson and Brosnan’s collective performances elevate what could have just been dismissed as a B-movie Western.

Seraphim Falls feels like an old school Western

Pierce Brosnan and Anjelica Huston in Seraphim Falls.
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Although Seraphim Falls is technically a revisionist Western that downplays the romanticism of the setting in favor of realism, the way that director and co-writer David Von Ancken filmed it makes this movie feel like an old-school Western. It even depicts the toll that the harsh environments take on Gideon and Carver before bringing both men to the end of their respective ropes.

There is a also bit of potential otherworldliness about Anjelica Huston’s character, Madame Louise, who gives both men part of what they need to kill each other. That may put off fans who prefer a fully traditional Western. But on the whole, this is a rare modern Western that feels like it truly belongs to the genre.

Watch Seraphim Falls on Netflix.