Luc Besson (The Big Blue, Nikita, Leon) is known for his style and not for the depth of his screenplays, so when he's in front of the typewriter not behind the camera it doesn't auger well for the movie. With Pierre Morel (District 13) - a Michael Bay to Besson's Jerry Bruckheimer - at the helm, Taken was never going to give the human trafficking theme its due. Bryan (Neeson) is an ex-government agent living on his own while his ex-wife (Janssen) and daughter Kim (Grace) are shacked up with the super rich Stuart (Xander Berkeley). Reluctantly, Bryan gives Kim permission to visit Paris and she's not five minutes off the plane when she's kidnapped. Bryan is on the case, and travels to the French capital with only 16 hours track her down before she's lost forever. Although this Bourne (if Bourne stayed put that is) meets Dirty Harry hybrid has energy, pace and you can't wait for the hero to give the villains a right hiding, the numerous cringey scenes and macho dialogue ruin any chance of loving it. "Now is not the time for dick-measuring, Stuart", "I push a button and 30 agents will be here before you can scratch your worthless balls" and "I will tear down the Eiffel Tower if I have to," being the best of a bad lot. Either these are bad lines to begin with or Neeson can't deliver them or worse - both. Neeson, doing his best with the role, isn't really an action hero and it's tough to believe him when he does his 007 shtick. For action fans, however, there are enough rip-roaring stunts and shoot-outs to entertain.
The opinions expressed here are those of the viewer and do not reflect those of Entertainment.ie. Entertainment.ie accepts no responsibility, legal or otherwise, for their accuracy of content. Please contact us to report abusive content