Taken 2

Neeson versus the Albanian mafia again!

English (A)
Director: Olivier Megaton
Cast: Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace, Famke Janssen, Rade Šerbedija

The original Taken (2008) was a super hit and spawned a cult following that helped resurrect Neeson’s career. Taken 2, created simply to cash in on the success of its predecessor, is more or less the same, with a few changes. Olivier Megaton replaces Pierre Morel as the director. The cast is the same, save for Šerbedija, who stars as the top villan.

Continuing from the first film, Bryan’s (Neeson) ex-wife Lenore (Janssen) has separated from her husband and his daughter Kim (Grace) has a new boyfriend. The scriptwriter has reasons for this: Lenore who plays a passive role in Taken, is the second lead here. For Lenore to join Bryan, the only reason had to be marital issues with her husband.

In the meantime, all is not well in rural Albania, where a community mourns its dead. Marko’s (the main antagonist from the first film) father Murad (Šerbedija) swears revenge on Bryan for having killed his people. Whereas Taken was about human-trafficking, and a father’s mission to rescue his daughter, this one’s about a father’s vengeance.

The action happens in Istanbul (pictured well through aerial shots), where Bryan and Lenore are abducted by Murad’s men. As Lenore is hung upside down and her neck slashed, Bryan guides Kim to help locate them, using grenades, and other weapons. The action is less dynamic and is standard fare, except for a fun scene where Kim without her DL drives through the streets, with her dad giving backseat lessons as he shoots the rogues. The final fight is a damp squib, for one cannot expect much from Murad, a sexagenarian to beat Bryan.

Taken 2 is not a great sequel, though fans of the first film might enjoy this.

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