I'll admit when I first saw the preview for Taken I wasn't sure how to respond. I mean Liam Neeson, a 56-year old, as the lead in an action movie? I just couldn't see it. But then I heard some people talking about how good the movie was and suddenly I wanted to give it a chance. So I did.
Taken stars Neeson as Bryan Mills, a former gov't agent, who has retired to spend more time with his 17 year old daughter, Kim (played by 25 year old Maggie Grace, Lost). We quickly learn exactly what Mills did for the gov't when some of his old buddies convince him to do a job, with them protecting a young pop star. When someone tries to attack the star after her concert Mills leaps in to action taking out her attackers and getting her to safety. Apparently Mills job was "a preventor" keeping bad things from happening to people.
As I said Mills has retired to spend more time with his daughter, who he neglected for his career over the years. When Kim comes to him for permission to go spend the summer with a friend in Europe, Mills is weary. But he relents and gives his permission. Almost as soon as Kim and Amanda get to Europe they are kidnapped and Mills jumps into action. And this is where the movie kicks it into high gear.
Mills heads to Europe and spend the rest of the movie kicking some bad guys behind. There are some amazing scenes in this film. From the amazing car chase, to facing down an entire room full of killers, Neeson proves that his age has no impact on how much butt he can kick. Everytime it looks like Mills is down for the count he finds a way out and completely demolished the bad guys.
I love action movies, from Die Hard to Bad Boys to The Bourne films, I could watch good (and some bad) action films for weeks. And Taken falls into this category. It's the best action movie I've seen in a long time and easily matches the last Bourne film and Casino Royale as far as action goes. It's got a good plot, that also shines light on an actual problem going on all over the world, and just great, great action.
Now some reviewers have not given this movie it's due, and I think part of it has to do with the fact that too many reviewers measure all films as if they are trying to be award-caliber films. This movie's not going to win any awards, but as far as action movies go, movies you can eat popcorn too, it's a good one.
I plan on picking it up as soon as it hits Blu-Ray, but you can still see it in theaters, so get your butt out there and see the best action movie of the last year.