Taken 2

“I don’t know who you are. I don’t know what you want. If you are looking for a good movie, I can tell you I don’t have one. But what I do have are a very particular set of skills; skills I acquired in the first movie in this series, and then was forced to abandon the acting skills I had honed over a very long career. If you stop coming to these movies now, that’ll be the end of it. I can move on, I will not have to make another one. But if you do come to this, and I wind up making Taken 3, I will find you, and I will kill you.”

“Taken 2″ picks up shortly after the events of “Taken”. Bryan Mills (Liam Neeson) has returned home to the States, and has brought his daughter (Maggie Grace) home safely, as well. Their current level of difficulty amounts to the fact that she has a new boyfriend, and is having trouble passing her driver’s test. They’re safe. Her mother (Famke Janssen) is separating from the man she married after she divorced from Bryan, leaving the door open for a potential reconciliation.

What none of them are aware of is that the head of the crime organization that Mills decimated in the first movie is bent on revenge. His son was amongst those that Mills murdered in order to save his daughter.

So when Mills accepts a security assignment in Turkey, and his daughter and ex-wife surprise him with an unannounced, spontaneous, international visit, suddenly all of the eggs are in one basket. Mills and his family are set upon by an endless stream of hapless, disposable, low-level, Turkish thugs.

It’s a reasonable excuse to set Neeson up with a new string of bad guys to kill. The revenge part at least. The fact that his ex-wife and daughter:

  • Know where his security detail abroad is
  • Could get there without his assistance, and quickly
  • Would want to go visit him abroad after the trauma his daughter experienced
  • Wouldn’t get immediately sent home by him, especially since they try to establish how overprotective he is now

strains credulity to say the least. Lame, I believe, is the word. I would say that I would have prefered that they had the bad guys come seek the family in America, but that would deprive the film of its strongest asset, which is sadly, the setting.

Finally, the film lacks that “Holy Shit, Liam Neeson is a badass!” surprise element. The first movie was propelled in large part due to the fact that that was a role we couldn’t imagine him in. We’ve seen his action schtick now, though, it’s no longer new. This time we’re left to judge it on its own merits, and truthfully, the action here isn’t very good. For the most part it’s spliced to hell in order to protect Neeson’s lack of actual martial arts ability. The car chases are relatively nondescript as well.

It’s not entirely without merits, it’s always entertaining to hear Neeson giving instructions and/or orders with his Bryan Mills voice. But that’s only going to get you so far. What you’re left with afterwards is a middling action movie, stemming from a sub par setup.

C-

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56 thoughts on “Taken 2

  1. This movie is freakin’ idiotic, but you know what? It’s a fun piece of idiotic entertainment that deserves to be watched without a brain in-tact. Everything’s so much better that way, or at least that’s what I thought. Good review bud.

    • I’ll concur with the “idiotic entertainment” part. :D I didnt think it was all that much “fun”.

      Liam Neeson is the only thing that kept this out of the garbage for me. I dont want him to find me and kill me I guess. LOL

  2. Pingback: Taken 2 Review: You’re not even trying and more… | Rorschach Reviews

  3. I’m going to wait until this rolls around to the small screen. I’ve no doubt I’ll enjoy it to some degree, but it feels like that sort of film that doesn’t need to have the big screen experience.

    Your opening totally cracked me up.

  4. Yeah…you know what? I was predicting this I mean, I LOVE Liam (don’t we all!) but there was really no potential for a sequel. I think he’s better at stand alone films, like Unknown. But Taken 2? What else is there to do?

    Your little paragraph at the beginning cracked me up though. I’m kinda feeling the same way at this point to be honest! :D

    • Sadly, Livi, the movie opened to HUGE numbers. Really. No joke, $50 million. That’s astonishing. It’s one of the biggest October openings of all time.

      The temptation for Taken 3 is going to be out there. I’m afraid of it. I really am. LOL

      • Oh I know! That’s been all over IMDB this weekend, and it was making me wonder if it was really that good…but I think too many people just love Neeson unconditionally, so they went to see it out of blind adoration. I’m all for that (Jeremy Renner, oops that slipped out!) but that doesn’t mean you sacrifice quality for casting and your own personal “Urrmeegod, there he is!” moments…

        You’re going to have carry out that threat if T3 comes around, you know. You’ve put it out there, you can’t step back now…

  5. I found the first Taken very racist, it portrays the antagonists in a catch all lazy, xenophobic ” we’re here to take your daughters, and deflower them” way, now, I’m no raving liberal, but these films just pander to the right leaning rednecks, racists and middle America/Britain xenophobes.
    If it’s not Muslims/ Eastern Europeans as bad guys, it’s us Brit’s!

    • LOL. Well, I’m sure politically correct sensibilities were the last of that film’s worries. It certainly did deal in stereotypes, but thankfully no one is going to consider it a spokesperson film or anything.

      And thankfully for Eastern European bad guys, they dont storm embassies and whatnot when an offensive film gets released, they just recognize it for hamfisted garbage! :D LOL

      Meanwhile, Taken 2 is no better, you can rest easy!

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