Film: Taken 2

LIAM NEESON returns to our screens for Taken 2. After a swing in his career to a more action-packed, Bond-esque style, some were surprised that a sequel could be made, as anything that was made would have to be really good to surpass that of the first film.

Does it succeed?

No. The film does not quite meet the same level of the first film. This does not mean, however, that it is not worth watching, the film is still action packed as we follow the thrill-filled story, this time with the twist that Neeson’s character, Bryan Mills is taken, along with his ex-wife and it is his daughter who has to save them.

The films starts off with everything fine, the family seems to be getting back together, Mills is getting along with ex-wife Lenore (Famke Janssen), as they go on holiday to Istanbul with daughter, Kim (Maggie Grace). Before long though, it appears their car is being followed and Neeson slips into survival mode. What ensues is an action thrilled sequence of events typical of the themes seen in the previous film, though not quite as violent as the 15 rated Taken had. It seems this film was toned down for that 12A rating, though rumours of an extended cut abound!

The main villain of the film is the father of the man tortured by Mills in the first film, out for revenge, he vows to kill Bryan and his family. With his troop of thugs he sets out to capture and take the family back to Albania. Alas, he has not prepared for the Mills’ ‘particular set of skills’, and they are all eventually thwarted after events including a fun packed car chase scene with Kim behind the wheel of a taxi and the ultimate fist fight between Neeson and chief Albanian (Rade Šerbedija). No doubt the family back home may make an appearance for a possible Taken 3.

The stand out performance of the film has to be Neeson- without him the film would certainly be a flop. Yet, Neeson combined with the explosive plot line definitely makes it a film worth watching, particularly for those who were fans of the original thriller. It may not be as fresh as the first, but it is still a credible sequel. Bring on Taken 3.