Today is Wednesday, July 26, 2017

'Taken 2' a disappointing rehash of the first

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And for good reason because Mills goes on the same rampage with the same dialogue as was seen in Taken and unfortunately for Director Olivier Megaton and Writers Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen, the novelty has worn off completely.

Taken 2 carries on like any action circus, with gun play and violence galore and car chases filmed in the shaky style of the Bourne trilogy. Since those films became a huge success several years ago, it seems many films since have borrowed their style.

Repetitiveness seems to be the major flaw of Taken 2 right down to rehashing the same dialogue as Taken and using music from other films while offering nothing new. Neeson is never depicted running or doing things beyond stand-still hand-to-hand combat, which is undoubtedly a product of his age.

The movie uses two songs from the 2011 film Drive, which is honestly a much better film all around and just made me want to watch that movie instead.

Neesons personality and acting chops as well as his gruff voice gave his Mills character surprising gravitas for the first movie. It was an odd change of pace for the otherwise outstanding actor who has played great dramatic roles in the past (most notably Oskar Schindler in 1993s Schindlers List).

The writers faced the daunting challenge of how to move the story from Taken into a sequel, but failed on almost all accounts. Of course its entertaining enough if you love action films, but youd be better off just popping Taken in on your home DVD player.

In one scene, Neeson actually has to recite lines that have him counting out loud while uttering birds and shift to second when hes kidnapped and blindfolded in a van trying to memorize the vans movements.

Despite his age, Neeson is depicted as having almost no issues dealing with the impossible scenarios hes put in, nor the bad guys with guns who are half his age. In Taken he was shot, stabbed and cut numerous times, but nothing of the sort happens here.

In the third act, when he growls, Im tired of it all, I felt sympathetic. Frankly, by the time it reached somewhat of a climax, I was tired of it all too.

Taken was admittedly completely implausible but highly entertaining and actually interesting. Its too bad Hollywood cant leave well enough alone anymore.

Taken 2 is now playing in local theaters and is rated R with a runtime of 91 minutes.

Editor Patrick Hall may be contacted at

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