Thursday, January 22, 2015

Movie Review: "Taken 3" (2015)

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Movie"Taken 3"
Director: Olivier Megaton
Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 1 hour, 49 minutes

Bryan Mills (Liam Neeson) is back, and now on much better terms with his ex-wife Lenore (Famke Janssen), who has been having marital problems with her current husband Stuart (Dougray Scott). When Lenore is murdered in Bryan's apartment police think he is the prime suspect. Now, wanted for murder, Bryan must prove his innocence and solve his wife's murder, all while evading police custody. 

It was the bagels!

We'll be the first to admit that the original "Taken" surprised us a lot because it was a solid action flick with an unexpected and kick ass new-found protagonist in Liam Neeson. Then, they came out with "Taken 2," which pushed the envelope in zero ways since it was essentially the same story, but in a different location. Some parts of #2 were decent enough, though BigJ liked it a bit more than I did. Now, Hollywood has come out with "Taken 3," which is a complete and total disaster that makes it clear that its filmmakers and director weren't even trying to mask that they were only in it for the money.

There is a point in an action star's life where they really start to look their age. Sylvester Stallone hit that mark a long time ago but managed to get trapped in the same situation now, in his 60's, though his franchise is dying, too. It is now the same story for Liam Neeson, who has also hit the point in his life where he just needs to dial it back a bit. In this film, the 62-year old Neeson actually looks like he is tremendous amounts of physical pain when he is simply running down the street. There's a scene where Forest Whitaker is running down a college campus hallway, and still, it's the same story, painful jaunting from side to side, stiff arms and all. When they are chasing people, tearing up the bad guys and evading impossible situations, knowing how much pain they look like they are in makes it that much harder to believe they can still kick ass. But, we digress.

"Taken 3" is nothing but a sack of cliches sold as an "action" movie. Every scene is full of contrived moments with a wide-ranging set of reactions from "what the hell?" in an ironic way to "what the fuck?" in a laugh out loud bad way. Forest Whitaker walks around the movie with a goddamn chess piece and twirls it whenever possible!! He also has rubber bands that he plays with when he can't find his friggin' chess piece! When Neeson walked away from his second, count 'em, his second explosion without so much as an explanation as to how he escaped from a burning fucking car wreck, you've got to just shake your head. And not only that, but he was so clean that it looked like he had time to stop at the spa for a haircut and pedicure, as well as the dry cleaner for a fresh pressed suit on his way to his next scene! And we have not once, NOT ONCE, ever seen a cop car with no barrier between the front and back seat. And what's with Famke Janssen's husband this time around? He is played by a completely different and much more sinister looking actor! OBVIOUSLY, the dude is hiding a buttload of secrets in his grizzled face!

To say everyone involved in this project was phoning it in is giving them at least a little bit of credit, which they don't deserve. Add these cliches and horrible scenes to an utterly useless Maggie Grace and Famke Janssen, an aging Liam Neeson and Forest Whitaker, with an unnecessarily large dose of Olivier Megaton's frenetic editing style that makes you want to puke (thanks for the comparison, Jeff!) and you have all of the makings of a dreadful final act to what didn't need to be a trilogy in the first place. Shame on you, Liam Neeson!

My Rating: 3/10
BigJ's Rating: 3/10
IMDB's Rating: 6.5/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 10%
Do we recommend this movie: AVOID LIKE THE PLAGUE!!!

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