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'Taken 2' review: Humorous action-thriller, go with the flow to enjoy

Liam Neeson appears in a scene from the 2012 film, 'Taken 2.' (Shanna Besson / EUROPACORP M6 FILMS - GRIVE PRODUCTIONS)

October 5, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
In "Taken 2," Liam Neeson is taken this time, kidnapped along with his ex-wife in Turkey. And the man behind it all is after their daughter, too.

It's an act of revenge over Neeson's character killing the man's son in the original "Taken." In the 2008 blockbuster, the son made the fatal mistake of kidnapping Liam's daughter. His revenge-filled father may not be much smarter.

In a nutshell, Neeson is able to escape from his kidnappers, but can he save his wife and daughter?

To enjoy this movie, you just have to go with the flow. Some pretty far-fetched scenarios play out, and the dialogue feels a little stern, steely and silly at times.

The audience I was with even giggled at some Neeson's tough guy lines, delivered in a way reminiscent of Charles Bronson or Clint Eastwood back in the 70s.

But like them, Neeson's retired CIA operative character is fearless, and you know it. There's a high body count here, carefully crafted in a barely PG-13 sort of way.

"Taken 2" is aimed at being a crowd-pleasing popcorn picture. There's action, some edge-of-your-seat moments, bad guys who are just bad, and a leading man who will do what it takes, without remorse, to save the ones he loves.

The film is about 86 minutes long, unless you stay for the credits. It has humor -- both intentional and not -- but it's really an action-thriller centered around a man you'd never want to meet under the wrong circumstances.

"Taken 2" may not get the love of the original, but it will get an audience.