6PR - Fairfax Radio Network

What we're talking about

  • Tracey on "Are you well hung?" Jackie Lambie - I thought it was funny and I'm over 50 and female!! more
  • Diana on Synergy board members walk Synergy Board members are very savvy people; their resignations are a HUGE vote of No Confidence in Mike Nahan. Replace him ... more
  • Dellas on "I found bags belonging to Australians" Can all you salivating "journalists" and "news people" please stop this opportunist "news fest", shut up and stop banging on ... more
  • Faye Rowe on Premier: 28 Australian lives lost Dear PaulMy husband and I are in Nice at present when we heard about the plane being shot down. We just couldn't believe it ... more
  • Wayde on Buswell claim lacking facts What would have happened if Troy was a well know criminal figure - The Police would have called in TRG and stormed his house ... more
  • Lee on Thorpe's admission ignites debate The first statement people make in regards to Ian Thorpeâ??s sexuality is â??who caresâ?? If nobody cares why are millions ... more
  • Ben on 'Fan First' Stadium Fan first for AFL, for rectangular sports no. No retractable seats, just stupid bump seats which really serve no purpose ... more
  • Danny on 'Fan First' Stadium You mentioned at length the number of various toilets, but nothing about disabled Facilites. Very inportant to us!!! more
  • Laurie on Buswell claim lacking facts The whole of the Buswell affair, plus the lies and deceit of the Liberal/NP Government, has ensured their defeat at the next ... more
  • david hanks on WA the grumpy state i think it should be BARNEY RUBBLE.Only Barney has more brains than that idiot in charge of our state.RF9 more
  • Dellas on Sheep shearing Terror Fair Dinkum, I always thought that shearing was a skill, a craft, a art, a profession and that shearer's were the epitome of ... more
  • tessata on Thorpe's admission ignites debate Ian Thorpe is a wonderful athlete and has a kind and loving personality I'm sure.But lets be honest its the Media that have ... more
  • Karen on Mum's disgust at S**t van Why don't these numbskulls think of a slogan for impotency, they obviously know about it first hand. more
  • Jean Jockey on Mum's disgust at S**t van WE saw a Wicked Camper at Broome, it had "If an animal bled for 3 days once a month you would shoot it!" painted on the ... more
  • Chris on Naughty corner is naughty What a load of C**PIt is as plain as the nose on your face that children have become more and more obnoxious, rebellious and ... more
  • Michelle on Sheep shearing Terror Are you kidding me!!!! No more meat ,no more wool....I hate seeing this, in our own country makes me even sicker. more
  • Kevin Briant on Sheep shearing Terror Sure some action by some shearers in your forage was very wrong,but be looking at the film several times I am of the opinion ... more
  • Shane on Harsher Penalties for Drivers Wednesday night, I was awoken by the familiar sound of hooning followed by the sound of a crash. Then another familiarity a ... more
  • Joylene Dodman on Naughty corner is naughty In a school removing a child temporarily is necessary to allow the child to calm down. Naughty corners went out in the 80s. ... more
  • tessata on Court stalls turn-back policy would the media and some sections of the govt. prefer to go back to seeing the boats coming in every day. The churches say ... more

Movie review: Taken 2

Posted by: Shannon Harvey | 10 October, 2012 - 8:29 AM
Taken 2 is in cinemas now and Shannon Harvey has passed a critical eye over Liam Neeson's latest offering.

The original Taken was a tiny $25 million Euro-thriller in 2008 with Liam Neeson (at age 56) as its unlikely action-hero. Even he’s admitted he expected it to go straight to DVD.

But it took everyone by surprise as a gritty, violent, old school European action-thriller, with Neeson as an ex-CIA spook with “a particular set of skills” who must rescue his daughter from nasty sex slave traffickers in Paris. He kicked butt, shot first, and didn’t bother taking names.

 

The original Taken was a tiny $25 million Euro-thriller in 2008 with Liam Neeson (at age 56) as its unlikely action-hero. Even he’s admitted he expected it to go straight to DVD.

 

But it took everyone by surprise as a gritty, violent, old school European action-thriller, with Neeson as an ex-CIA spook with “a particular set of skills” who must rescue his daughter from nasty sex slave traffickers in Paris. He kicked butt, shot first, and didn’t bother taking names.

 

Taken made $227 million worldwide. It also turned Neeson into a new-age Chuck Norris, a senior citizen action star who’s enjoyed a purple patch playing action-heroes ever since in Clash of the Titans, The A-Team, Unknown, The Grey and Battleship.

 

So Taken 2 was always going to happen.

 

It’s set several years later, where Bryan Mills (Neeson) invites his daughter Kim (Maggie Grace) and his ex-wife (Famke Janssen) to Istanbul, where he has three days work.

 

If you just had your daughter kidnapped by sex traffickers in Paris, would you invite her to Istanbul, nextdoor to the Middle East?

 

This time the relatives of the shady Albanian traffickers Neeson dispatched in the first film are baying for his blood here. This time, it’s him and his ex-wife who are taken and the daughter who must rescue them, with the help of daddy’s “particular set of skills.”

 

It’s a nice inversion the original narrative, with dad and mum taken and the daughter doing the rescuing.

 

Unfortunately, like most sequels, Taken 2 is a major let compared with that cracking original, which came with no fanfare as a tough, relentless, rated MA15+ Euro-thriller with brutish hand-to-hand combat, gripping chase scenes, and cool one-liners.

This sequel is rated M, and it’s a watered down, sanitised retread. It’s as if Hollywood execs hijacked it from its European origins and turned it into an audience-friendly action flick. All the fight been taken out of it, and barely a drop of blood is spilt. There’s none of the bone-crunching punch-ups and take-downs where you can see and hear and feel the crunch of noses being broken or the cracks of teeth being chipped.

 

I bet there will be a much better uncut DVD version down the line.

 

I blame new director Olivier Megaton, who has no idea how to shoot action. He places his cameras far too close to his actors and uses strobe-light editing that make it impossible to see what’s happening.

 

Still, Taken 2 is not without its dopey delights. Neeson again delivers those scary ultimatums and one liners. Kim drives a yellow taxi in a thrilling car chase through Istanbul’s cobbled streets. And in the film’s most hilariously preposterous sequence, Neeson directs his daughter to his location using a map, a shoelace and a grenade. Eat your heart out MacGyver!

 

If Taken 2 was set in the US, if Neeson’s CIA pals joined the action, and if it replicated the edgy, rated MA nastiness of the original, this could have been even better than the original.

 

Instead, it’s a toned down, crowd-friendly, rated M let down that’s more mild than wild.

 

Score – 5 out of 10

 

 

 

 

Blog comments Your Say

Post a comment * Mandatory fields