PREVIEW: TAKEN 3
When the original Taken hit theatres across the world back in 2008, few could have predicted that it would prove to be as riotously successful as it was.
Essentially a b- movie action flick starring occasional A- lister Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace and Famke Janssen, the Luc Besson helmed project confounded all expectations both critically and commercially. The movie served as a shot in the arm for Neeson’s career, re- establishing him as a bit of a badass, and leading to other epic actioners like the awesome 2011 effort The Grey, and gave director Besson a real boost to his own career. A sequel was inevitable, and despite the fact that it turned out to be something of a damp squib, it still performed reasonably well at the box office, earning back almost ten times its budget globally. That there would be a third installment didn’t seem quite so cut and dry at that stage, though. Already, critics were rounding on the fact that the premise of the original could spawn a sequel, and it was difficult to find too much fault in that logic - although Die Hard did manage to pull off essentially the very same feat, albeit with a much better reception, for its sequel. Even the movie’s leading man Neeson cast doubt on whether or not the duology would become a trilogy, saying in an interview with Irish radio station 98FM “I don’t think there’ll be a Taken 3. She can’t get taken again; that’s just bad parenting,” but Besson wasn’t about to cast aside what had become a major money- maker just yet. Speaking about his plans for the third movie and the concerns that a third plot about a kidnapping might be a little hard to swallow for some, the director said “It’s another story with the same characters. No one is taken. The dog is not taken. It’s different, but it’s very good. It’s probably the best of the three for me, in terms of the script.” So, with nobody actually being taken this time around, what direction is the movie going to go in? Following the events of the first two movies, Neeson’s Bryan Mills has started to build a semblance of order and normality back into his life, but when his wife Lenore is murdered at their home, he becomes the prime suspect and needs to use all his cunning and “talents” to evade the pursuing law enforcement, led by Forest Whitaker.