Movie Review – "Taken"

“Taken” staring Liam Neeson and his butt kicking skills, is everything the cliché, feel good, action flick should be - in a good way. The standard plot complete with the rescue of a lady (in this case Neeson’s character’s daughter), someone who doubts the rescuer’s abilities (in this case a cold ex wife remarried to a very wealthy man), bad guys to beat up and locations other than America for the action to take place. The plot’s a little unrealistic, the situations are some that normal folks would never end up in, but go see this movie if only for Neeson’s performance – his acting is natural and not cheesy and he kicks some real bad guy booty – it’s impressive!

Taken’s plot involves Neeson’s daughter being kidnapped while vacationing in Paris with a friend. Neeson plays an ex spy out to get her back no matter whose neck he needs to break. The journey brings audiences into a world of trafficking young women and some of the good people don’t make it out alive.

- Liam Neeson, Liam Neeson – He’s on screen for about 98% of the film and deservingly so. The man, 56 years old, takes what can typically be a very formulaic role similar to David Caruso on CSI Miami, and makes him a protective father desperate to reconnect with his daughter. Also, it is clear that Neeson trained for this movie. His fight scenes are worthy of any action film but age appropriate, which is nice.

-Ooh-la-la de Paris – Paris is beautiful (except for the parts with rundown streets full of prostitutes that are beaten for talking to non paying men).

-Time Constraints - It’s actually a decent length! At just about an hour and a half every minute is full and doesn’t drag.

-The Action - A pet peeve of mine in action movies happens when the bad guys shoot and miss their targets and the good guys never get shot. Well, Neeson gets shot, kicked, hit in the head with household stuff, punched, and other painful things.

-Maggie Grace – Not her acting, don’t get me wrong, the former Lost star is a lovely actress, however I think the 25 year old is too old to be playing 17 and it seems a little odd to see her dressed in costume like clothing to make her look younger. Again, her acting is good, but why couldn’t the daughter just be 21 or something?

-The Car Chase – There are a of couple car chases, but one in particular just seemed as if they taped it at about 30 miles an hour and speed up the film. Also, Neeson, who is driving, swerves in and out of A LOT of cars and doesn’t even nick a side mirror. Hmmm. Maybe the cars in Paris have amazing handling that American cars don’t.

Yeah maybe wait for “Taken” to come out on Blu-Ray to see it, but whatever you do, don’t miss it. Neeson is terrific (almost too good of an actor for his surroundings in the film – if that makes sense). Paris is beautiful and the action is what it should be for this genre.

What did you think of Neeson’s performance? Any pro’s or con’s to this movie?

“Basically, I'm for anything that gets you through the night - be it prayer, tranquilizers or a bottle of Jack Daniels.” – Frank Sinatra
So may the prayers, tranquilizers and JD be with you and see you next time.


Crab said...

This movie was awesome - but I totally agree about Neeson being "too good" for the movie and yes... it was creepy seeing Maggie Grace play a 17 year old.

ps. This is Brian (Erin's fiance) - I saw your link to your blog on facebook. Your reviews rock man, keep it up.

BloggingFun said...

Thanks for the comment brian! Keep 'em coming (even if you disagree!)