Those who have seen ‘Taken’ probably are wondering what exactly the sequel to the successful first film would be about; meaning how similar will the two storylines be. If you have seen the trailer then the question is already answered. If not, then let’s just say I’m sure the idea for the plot didn’t take more than a couple of minutes to create.
Still retired special agent Bryan Mills (Liam Neeson) travels to Istanbul for work. After his business is done there he gets a surprise visit from his ex-wife Lenore (Famke Janssen) and their daughter Kim (Maggie Grace). While riding around Istanbul, Bryan and Lenore are kidnapped by the family of the victims Bryan killed in ‘Taken’. Of course Bryan doesn’t go without a fight. Before finally being taken away, Bryan informs his daughter of what has happened and he is able to help talk her through escaping from being kidnapped again like she had been in the first movie. Now with Bryan being the one kidnapped this time, he uses the help of Kim to help him escape. Now he must figure out how to go back and save his ex-wife.
Yeah, I Liked That
So what if ‘Taken 2’ stars a 60-year-old unstoppable special agent, as long as the character is played by Neeson. He is able to make a very unbelievable character exciting with a calm and confident demeanor. The action done by Neeson is also very cool to watch mainly because the hand-to-hand combat is handled well. Watching Neeson come away from a fight as the winner using just his hands and gun was fun to witness.
‘Taken 2’ included interesting elements to the story also. The torture technique used on Lenore involving a neck cut wasn’t something out-of-this-world but creative none the less and something I personally haven’t seen before (or at least that I can remember). The techniques used by Bryan to save his family are interesting too, no matter how silly they get. The scene where Bryan helped Kim find his location using a map and grenades seemed kind of ridiculous but cool at the same time. You’re in for a surprise when it comes to the knowledge Bryan uses to do what he does best.
Yeah, I Didn’t Like That
I’m not a fan of director Olivier Megaton style of directing. I didn’t enjoy his methods used in ‘Colombiana’ or ‘Transporter 3’, and I didn’t enjoy them in this movie. The set pieces Megaton chooses and how he goes about shooting them gives his movie a dull vibe.
The biggest thing going against ‘Taken 2’ is the similarity it has to its predecessor. Yes, I know it’s a sequel but it still can go above and beyond the first one. Once we see what family member Bryan has to save, we can already guess how it’s going to happen. What makes it even worse is that the storyline has less excitement this time around. In ‘Taken’, we don’t know where the hunt Bryan goes on will take him. In this film, we know exactly where he is heading to find his wife. The villains this time around once again don’t sport much of a problem for Bryan to top it off. They even leave our special agent alone after he’s kidnapped, which of course leaves our hero plenty time and space to plan his escape. But let me stop rambling and just say that ‘Taken 2’ goes wrong where ‘TheHangover Pt. 2’ went wrong.
Although ‘Taken 2’ is hindered by being predictable as can be, the character brought to life by Neeson is entertaining to watch as the, some-what, unstoppable force who picks off his enemies one by one and uses unheard of methods to again, do what he does best.
RATING: Might Rent
P.S. Once again here is my rating scale. There are four different levels. Below is each level in order from best to worse and what each one means.
Must Own = A movie that is so good that I must add it to my Blu-ray collection when it comes out.
Would Accept as a Gift = I enjoyed the movie but don’t necessarily have to buy it (especially if I don’t have the funds to) myself but I would take it if someone bought it for me.
Might Rent = A movie that if I have the urge to watch again then I’ll just rent it from somewhere or Netflix it.
Never See Again = Very simple. I don’t want to ever see this movie again.
(Photo Credit: George Rother – http://movieguy247.com/iMovies/index.php/reviews/action-adventure/1015-taken-2; Robbie Collin – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/film/filmreviews/9587891/Taken-2-review.html; Marie Krolock – http://www.moviepilot.de/news/olivier-megaton-dreht-taken-3-mit-liam-neeson-127622)