Taken 3

Posted January 9, 2015 by in


Total Score

.5/ 5

Quick Stats

Genre: action
Director: Oliver Megaton
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Actors: Liam Neeson, Forest Whitaker, Maggie Grace
Length: 109 minutes
Release Date: 1-9-2015
Studio: Canal+, Ciné+, EuropaCorp M6 Films
What We Thought

Taken 3 is hardly the first actioner to imitate The Bourne Supremacy, but it’s the worst instance in my experience. This movie is unwatchable, and I almost walked out in the first 20 minutes.

by Daniel Hodgson
Full Article
Watching Taken 3 is like stepping into the mind of someone with a severe case of Attention Deficit Disorder.  It can’t focus on anything for more than a fraction of a second.
     Here’s an angle of Bryan Mills (Liam Neeson) running from cops.  Here’s one from another angle.  And another.  Another.  Another-another-another-another-another.
     A car chase soon afterwards is even worse.  It plays like the foot-chase with the cops in the editing, but additionally, the camera shakes like a .9 on the Richter scale.  You put the choppy editing and the camera work together, and you can’t tell what in the heck is going on.  You get the general sense of it, sure, but no idea of who is doing what to whom.  At one point, a truck flips over.  I’m not sure how or why, but it does.
     It’s not exciting.  It’s confusing and frustrating.  Taken 3 is hardly the first actioner to imitate The Bourne Supremacy, but it’s the worst instance in my experience.  That’s not an exaggeration.  This movie is unwatchable, and I almost walked out in the first 20 minutes.
     It’s a shame, really, and moreover, a disappointment.  I liked the first Taken.  It was dark, violent, and disturbing. It didn’t play it safe.  I cheered Neeson’s anti-hero on, as he went to any length to get his daughter back from sex-traffickers.  It made you give a damn about the outcome by developing the father-daughter relationship in a slow, almost action-free first act.  A good movie, really.
     The wholly unnecessary follow-up, Taken 2, was pretty bad, but in a silly, entertaining way.  Taken 3, however, is just bad. Bad in a bad way.  Bad as its own movie, and worse as a follow-up film.  Taken 2 promised that the feud between Mills and the sex-traffickers wasn’t over.  Taken 3 has absolutely nothing to do with that.  Nothing.
     In this third iteration, Mills is framed for the murder of his wife (Famke Janssen), and on the run from the cops.  Being a good-guy, he doesn’t use lethal force on them, and create the body count you’d expect from a Taken movie.  You don’t go to a Taken movie to watch Mills play nice.
     Forest Whitaker plays the main cop who’s after Mills.  He has a weird rubber-band fetish, and spends two scenes eating bagels.  Just what you want from a Taken movie.
     This movie belongs in January, the dumping ground of bad films.  And when it comes to year-end roundup, I’ll be keeping this cash-in in mind.

About the Author

Daniel Hodgson

Daniel has a degree in film from the University of Texas at Austin, and writes about himself in the third-person, because that's the fashion.


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