So Liam Neeson is back and doing what he apparently does best searching and destroying. Bryan Mills is off on a bodyguard detail in Istanbul for a stint while his ex family sits safe and sound in the USA. Of course, going through some difficult times with the new husband, ex Mrs Mills, Lenore and daughter Kim decide to surprise Bryan before he heads home. Though with Bryan Mills a quick brush of sun can't happen without a gun being pointed at him or his daughter, this time round a lavish dinner turns into kidnapping with both himself and Lenore the targets. Realizing his nemesis this time round is grieving father of his previous punching bags, he's in for a tricky one in getting out of the deep end. Speaking of deep ends, daughter Kim's rejuvenation by the pool is cut short when the father must make a disciple of his child if he is to escape and save his wife's life. Together Bryan and Kim must set about to crashing across Istanbul before time runs out with half of the city out to get them.
Despite everything that feels mundane, on repeat and downright money conning from filmmakers, Neeson as a gun wielding super dad Bryan Mills is still effectively entertaining and Neeson proves he still has the chops to pull of a neat trick or two. That now said, the praise ends there. Maggie Grace as daughter Kim serves no other purpose than to freak out and pull emotional and strained faces, while it takes away from the victim feel that she must overcome from the first outing, trying to make her more of a sidekick didn't help add to the narrative overall. Doing even less then Maggie Grace is Famke Janssen as Lenore, who essentially has the pure purpose as replacing Kim as an even more helpless victim. But being as she's also Xenia Onatopp and Jean Grey, you'd have thought she'd have a bit more of a presence, she's a Bond girl! No longer just that homeless guy with the nice coat in Batman Begins, Rade Serbedzija plays Murad Krasniqi the man out for blood against Mills and family for the mistreatment of his own. (I mean seriously, he dug all those graves and paid for the service i'd be ticked off too) As crazy and evil as any man can be, well he tries but he just seems more like a grieving old man who hasn't really thought anything through, i much preferred as the homeless man if I'm being honest.
Naturally Taken 2 now sits in the top 10 on IMDB's greatest films list... I would be saying if I was overcome by a strange and omnipotent insanity. Taken 2 is a terrible film, not because of its content or flat acting, but because its the only film I've ever seen to actually be summarized to entirety in the trailer. If the trailer was combined with the first films, dull chatter moments edited in i would congratulate you, as you too would have just made a sub par film that milks money in the name of Hollywood. Luc Besson has written some classics in his time (See Leon, no seriously if you haven't get up and go!) and in it's own way even Taken felt new and dark even with Man of Fire's existence, Taken stood out and spread like wildfire on its release. Who wouldn't want to see Qui-Gon Jinn rushing around Paris causing carnage and chaos to save his daughters life? Who wants to see him do the exact same thing except for his wife in Istanbul, with much less impressive sequences, a staggeringly slow start, dull villain and void of anything new or original? I'll let you decide if you want to waste the money or simply dig out a copy of the first film.
2 / 10