Taken (2009) Don’t Cross Liam Neeson

GENRE(S): Action  Suspense/Thriller
WRITTEN BY: Luc Besson
Robert Mark Kamen
DIRECTED BY: Pierre Morel
RELEASE DATE: Theatrical: January 30, 2009
RUNNING TIME: 94 minutes, Color
ORIGIN: France

I’m taking a brief reprieve from my “Chicks Who Don’t Need Flowers” series to review the new action movie Taken. Never has the expression “Don’t talk to strangers” ever been as true as it is in Taken. After some punks kidnap Liam Neeson’s daughter, the Liam drops the hammer and rules this movie as he kicks every person’s ass single handedly. It’s not like he was being unfair either, he gave them ample warning as to what was going to happen…they just didn’t believe him until it was too late. In Taken Neeson plays Bryan Mills, a very concerned and skilled father whose daughter gets kidnapped by Albanian slave traffickers. BOY DID THEY PICK THE WRONG GUY TO MESS WITH! Mills worked for the government and had acquired some very handy skills over his career. What kind of skills you ask? Was he good with computers? No. I am talking about being able to hand 10 guys their asses at one time, while they’re armed with guns and he’s armed with a shoe. That’s the kind of skillset I’m talking about. And that is the whole movie: Girl goes to Paris, girl gets kidnapped, Neeson goes on a rampage to save her. The end. So simple, yet sooooo AWESOME. Bryan Mills (Neeson) is smooth, smart, and merciless. He promises to kill anyone who crosses him, and he stands by his word.

The best line in the movie that sets the tone is given away in the trailer. “I don’t know who you are, I don’t know what you want, If you’re looking for ransom, I can tell you I don’t have money, but what I do have are a very particular set of skills, skills that have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a night mare for people like you. If you let my daughter go now, that will be the end of it. But if you don’t, I will look for you. I will find you and I will kill you.” If Liam Neeson said that to me, I would be poopin’ my pants. But the bad guy just said “Good luck,” which was like adding fuel to the fire.

There have been some complaints that the movie requires no thought and has ridiculous situations that are far fetched from reality. I say that those people need to quit overanalyzing it. It’s an ACTION movie, not a masterpiece of literature. The joy will be drained from all action movies if you overanalyze the feasibility of it all. Even if all the things said are true, it is totally worth turning off your brain for action lovers. It is fun and fast paced. I never looked at my watch to see if it was almost over. I never thought it’s time for this to end like I have in some other too long action movies.

Bottom line: Go see it if you love action.

Time until the real action starts:  ~ 36 minutes. It has a slow start but once it gets going it doesn’t stop. There is an action-teaser about 10 minutes in just to let you know what’s coming.

Big bad baddies: Albanian slave traffickers

Best Line: “Now is not the time for dick measuring.” –Bryan Mills (Neeson)  

Best Kill: There are just so many to choose from but the one that stands out in the movie is in the end…Spoiler Alert…Neeson is face to face with a Sheik who is holding a knife to Kim’s (Maggie Grace) throat. Neeson is pointing a gun at the Sheik’s head and they are in a stand off. The Sheik is offering to negotiate right as Neeson pulls the trigger and pops the Sheik in the head giving him a big F U to his negotiation idea. Just another example of how ruthless Neeson’s character is in the movie.

Best Explosion: Neeson is trying to get away in a car while being chased by the Albanians. The car is being pelted with bullets and Neeson spins it around and runs into several barrels of fuel. Then, he spins back the other way and hits a trash can with a fire in it (homeless guy’s fireplace). The fire ignites the fuel and explodes. Now whether he planned all that or not, I don’t know but it was cool.

Rating: 4 out of 5 Liam Neesons kicking the crap out of drug dealing people traffickers.

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8 thoughts on “Taken (2009) Don’t Cross Liam Neeson

  1. RachsMedia

    Awesome review!
    Although my fave kill was the one where the Top badguy sends a henchman back to find out what going on, he opens the door and BOOM!
    Laughed my arse off. Totally embarrassed my flatmate (full cinema, me and my best mate were the only ones laughing).

  2. Quixote74

    Missed this one in the theater but finally caught it on cable a few days ago. Lived up to all expectations – and I was especially happy to see that unlike 99% of movies these days, the commercials/trailers did not spoil the action or give away too much of the plot (simple though it may be).

    This isn’t a role I would have pictured for Neeson, but he pulls it off very well – much better than a traditional “action” star. For anyone who’s read Tom Clancy’s novels, this is much closer to CIA badass “John Clark” than Willem Dafoe (Clear & Present Danger) or Liev Schreiber (Sum of All Fears) – a seemingly ordinary guy, who turns into a killing machine when sh*t starts to go down.

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