February 3, 2013 by CINEfaction Movie Review.
I will preface this review by saying that I know Taken 2 isn’t supposed to be taken too seriously but still, this movie is the film equivalent of being shat on from a great height.
Taken was a rare movie that somehow captured the hearts and minds of the cinema masses without being particularly good. It was the MTV version of Leon, which is still a minor masterpiece in my opinion. That said, Taken 2 is much worse. Its like the grey-scale version of the first film, there is no plot, no direction and it has a amazingly juvenile script. Its hard to believe any adult human beings were involved in making this movie.
Don’t get me wrong, Liam Neeson is by all accounts a good actor but I’ve rarely seen a performance of such disconnect and disinterest. All he does here is punch and mope. Neeson’s Mills is barely a character aside from his mumbled, failed, half cocked one liners. Also, Famke Janssen presents one of the single most insultingly bad performances i’ve seen in modern times. I found it hard to sympathise with anyone in the film, everyone is so unlikable, synthetic and stupid. Watching Maggie Grace prance around in her knickers throwing grenades and drawing circles was also dreadfully misplaced and laughable.
There are more than a few non sensical, Hollywood moments too, such as sinister terrorists using flimsy plastic ties to try and hold a dangerous ‘spy’. Or when Neeson drives through the American embassy blockade for no other reason than to see some bullets fly and to re-affirm the notion that he will never ever be hurt. The movie also seems to be heavily edited at choice moments of violence; this was surely to secure the coveted 12a rating helping the movie to be seen by as many adoring juveniles as possible. A good example of this is in the films rushed ending where a few kills happen without defining shots or sound-effects which was ironically more painful to watch. We have seen this trend before especially with the much more enjoyable Die Hard 4, in which lines were clearly and lazily re-dubbed and violence was trimmed needlessly.
The fighting and action should be the saving grace of a picture such as this but here its difficult to follow and uneventful at best. There are so many better movies that have done this very thing much better, so why bother? It tries its hardest to look exactly like and to be as exciting as The Bourne Movies but fails miserably on both counts.
This movie is a complete and utter failure.