What can games learn about masculinity from Liam Neeson?

Eric Eisenberg of Cinemablend interviewed Liam Neeson about his role in upcoming film The Grey. Between preparing, shooting and acting, Neeson is charged with becoming a “man’s man” but as the interview reveals, he’s actually quite the opposite.

The characters in these action movies you appear in are all alpha males. Is that something you relate to in real life? 

 No. That’s why I love Carnahan – he’s a leader, and I’m so not a leader. I can play them, but in life, I’m not one.

 This is about very masculine men, but we live in an era of metrosexuality. What does this film have to say about modern masculinity? 

 Well, I think in general it does touch on man’s general fear-I don’t think for this generation, but for my generation and my father’s generation, of difficulty in accessing emotion and then being able to talk about it. I think it certainly touches on that, and these guys, these characters in this film find it very, very hard to relate certainly to themselves and to one another. Which is one of the nice things about the film, that they do, in a way, they do share a very primitive, basic way.

Neeson’s public persona in recent years has been defined by his roles in action movies like Taken, Unknown and now The Grey. The contrast between his personal life and characters may have some parallels in gaming. The success of franchises like Call of Duty and Gears of War have led to hostile environments online but how many of these gamers are just as timid and looking for an easy, fantasy façade?

– Adnan Agha