I know, I know, I showed up late to this particular party. I apologize. Truth is, I saw Taken 3 on the day it premiered, but just haven’t been able to muster up the energy to talk about it. Today I’m just in a particular mood, so I figured, “Eh, why not?” I’m going to keep it brief though, as a movie that reeks like this doesn’t deserve more than 500 words.
Taken 3 is the follow-up to the sequel no one wanted that released back in 2012. I hated nearly everything about it, everything from the insanely ridiculous grenade/rooftop scene to the blatant musical ripping-off of Drive (it used two songs from Drive’s soundtrack). Olivier Megaton has proved with movies like Transporter 3 that he cannot film action to save his life, and he has once again grounded that truth with these Taken movies. But keep in mind, I’m not talking about the 2008 hit, which was a refreshing and dumb action movie that reintroduced Liam Neeson in a surprisingly new way. It wasn’t directed by Olivier Megaton.
For some reason, the cries of critics around the nation didn’t influence the studio, because they hired Megaton to step into the director’s position once again for Tak3n, and, to no one’s surprise, it sucks… once again. Seriously, this movie is filmed without any skill whatsoever. There is one particular scene toward the beginning where Liam Neeson jumps a fence, and I swear that Megaton has over ten shots in a matter of five seconds. As characters are being chased, the camera is shaking in every direction, actually having the effect of a physical headache. I’m not exaggerating. There was one car chase sequence that was cut so poorly I actually got a headache while watching it, and it remained with me for the rest of the day. So, I guess you could say that I have a personal vendetta against this film.
I guess it’s essential that I mention the plot of the film in some way, shape, or form, but I don’t want to destroy your brain cells any more than I already have. Basically, this movie isn’t about anyone being taken at all. Someone dies (in case you don’t know, I won’t spoil it, if you actually care) and Bryan Mills (Neeson) is framed for the murder. So now he’s on the run, keeping in contact with Kim (his daughter, played by Maggie Grace, terrible once again) and a detective played by Forest Whitaker. That’s really it. I will give the movie credit for at least trying to do something different instead of being a carbon copy of the original like Taken 2 was. Unfortunately, it doesn’t really work.
Many critics are tearing apart the ending, which has a ludicrously stupid scene involving a plane on a runway, but the film’s crowning “You’ve-got-to-be-kidding-me” twist is when Bryan purposefully puts something in a yogurt at a convenience store, knowing Kim would drink it, making her go the bathroom in order to meet with him secretly. Yes, Bryan meets with his daughter in the school bathroom. It isn’t creepy at all (did you detect my sarcasm?)
Okay, so I went over 500 words, but I’m done. Tak3n pulls a Hangover and at least tries to be better than the duplicate-of-the-original that the first one was. The thing is, I liked The Hangover: Part III. I did not like Tak3n. That being said, there was one particular moment in which you get to hear Liam Neeson audibly think the word “Bagels.” It’s pretty hilarious. But this movie sucks, and hopefully this is really the end and the studio doesn’t decide to make a T4ken.
Rated PG-13 for for intense sequences of violence and action, and for brief strong language
Starring Liam Neeson, Forest Whitaker, Maggie Grace, Famke Jannson
Written by Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen
Directed by Olivier Megaton
Photo credits: ThatFilmGuy.net, IMDB.com, FoxMovies.com