Taken 2, 2012.
Directed by Olivier Megaton.
Starring Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace, Famke Janssen and Rade Šerbedžija.
In Istanbul, retired CIA operative Bryan Mills and his wife are taken hostage by the father of a kidnapper Mills killed while rescuing his daughter.
When Taken came out back in 2008 nobody knew it would go on to be a huge success. It was actually a pretty decent action movie and single-handily relaunched the career of Liam Neeson. Taken ended on a fine note and didn’t really leave anything open for a sequel. However, last year we were given Taken 2 and to nobody’s surprise it turned out to be a sequel that was completely unnecessary.
The story here, while a simple revenge tale, looked as if it could be somewhat interesting given what the trailers showed. The problem is the film isn’t executed well at all and keeps you wondering throughout why they even decided to make this. It doesn’t help that nobody involved seems to be the least bit interested in anything that was going on with this sequel. Liam Neeson is basically sleepwalking through the entire run of the film but he’s the only part of it that keeps things slightly interesting. Maggie Grace, who is almost thirty and is supposed to be playing a sixteen year old, is at least trying but she’s never been a particularly great actress and the material she’s given wouldn’t be good no matter who was playing her character.
A big problem I had with this were the villains. While their motives are justified they all just come off as very weak. None of them are the least bit intimidating and you just wish they would all go away very early on. Another problem I had were some of the ridiculous things that happen. I know this film isn’t trying to be realistic in any way but some things are just hard to overlook. For instance, Maggie Grace’s character throws a grenade from a hotel window onto the top of a parking deck at one point. The grenade blows up a car and nobody seems to notice that a grenade just went off. There’s also a part with Grace again where she’s looking for some clothes in a locker room and just so happens to find an outfit that looks like it came right out of her closet and fits perfectly on her. Things like that are just a little too ridiculous if you ask me.
For this to be an action film it’s certainly one of the most boring I’ve seen in a long time. Yeah, there’s a couple of car chases and fight scenes but none of them are very entertaining. It also doesn’t help that you can’t tell anything that’s going on during any of the fight scenes because this has some of the worst editing I’ve ever seen, even for an action film. They probably didn’t want anybody to be able to see what was going on during the fight scenes anyway because the fight choreography didn’t look too impressive from what I could see.
Taken 2 is the perfect example of a sequel that didn’t need to happen. Bad script, weak acting, boring action and choppy editing don’t make for a very entertaining film.
Flickering Myth Rating – Film: ★ / Movie: ★