ACTION; 1hr 30min
STARRING: Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace
As retired spy Bryan, relocated to Los Angeles in an effort to bond with his 17-year-old daughter Kim (Grace; Famke Janssen is a huff of ruffled feathers as Kim’s mother and Brian’s ex), Neeson is resignedly vulnerable. But when Kim is kidnapped by Albanian traffickers while on a trip to Paris, her pained and over-protective father evolves in a blink into a ruthless force. And just as well, too, since Bryan has a 96-hour window in which to locate his daughter. It’s an impossible ask for most men and a big-time order even for him.
Taken is co-written by Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen and directed by Pierre Morel. Together they make sharp and classy work of a fixated man’s descent into the shady mire of hell. The all-out action belts along like a sports car in top gear, with Neeson in the audacious control of the fanatical and the possessed. I never doubted the outcome, and nor was that a worry: the thrill of this tailspin is all about the chase.