Friday, October 05, 2012
Walking into “Taken 2” you know what to expect and in an hour and 31 minutes you get it. There are the car chases, the fights, another car chase and then a few more fights. There is blood and torture with the hero killing, stabbing and fighting a dozen guys only to walk away without even breathing hard.
“Taken 2” is basically a remake of the first movie but this time it is the ex-wife in peril and the daughter helps dad. Bryan (Liam Neeson), his daughter Kim (Maggie Grace) and his ex-wife, her mother, Lenore (Famke Janssen) go on a vacation in Istanbul. Almost immediately Lenore and Bryan are kidnapped by the man, an Albanian clan chef, whose son had been killed by Bryan. Murad Krasniqi (Rade Sherbedgia) wants him to suffer as he has. Kim eludes the men who have come to nab her and before you know it she is throwing hand grenades all over the city with none of the citizens taking note, jumps from roof to roof of building with various heights not breaking an ankle or hurting any part of her body. Her best action, though, having failed to get her driver’s license 2 times, she takes a taxi on a wild chase banging into cars and cars crashing into the taxi. It isn’t until the lastminute that the cab gets a couple of scratches on it.
Bryan has a flawless memory which comes in handy when he and his ex are kidnapped, acts like the typical Hollywood father when Kim has her first boyfriend and Lenore’s new boyfriend conveniently leaves her, all to set up for what is to come. The first thing you have to do when walking into a movie like this is check your logic at the door, sit back and just enjoy the fights and chases.
Neeson is a flawless believable action hero, Maggie Grace almost matches him as a action heroine and Janssen does a good job in a thankless role. Sherbedgia fulfills the villain role with ease as do all his henchmen. The director, Olivier Megaton, and screenwriters Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen, work together to bring a typical Hollywood type thriller with an aim to please and they do. A positive addition to the movie is the score by Nathaniel Mechaly with music that adds to the suspense inside of intruding. The scenes of Istanbul show the city in both its beauty and ugliness.
Needless to say the film sets up for a “Taken 3”--now if we could only get Neeson to do some heavyweight roles that brought him to the movie audience’s attention in the first place.