Taken was a hysterical French critique of President George W. Bush’s foreign policy and perceived xenophobia, told through the international language of relentless violence and sex emperors. It was very much of its time, with Bush’s presidency nearing its end in 2008, making me fearful this sequel could end up feeling redundant.
Admittedly, it’s hard to go wrong with Liam Neeson in full badass mode, but the movie will have to contend with actual expectations this time around, plus an American president lacking his predecessor’s warmongering zeal. It’ll almost certainly be a decent actioner, since Besson has established a solid record producing in the genre (I for one enjoyed Colombiana), but whether it will achieve the same transcendent lunacy as the original is up in the air. This US trailer is more of the same, with the nice touch of spinning the concept on its head by having the villains motivated by revenge for fallen comrades last time out, and Paris swapped for Istanbul. The movie’s out on October 5th. Fingers crossed.