Movie Review: The trilogy-capping Taken 3 is action-movie slop

The neatest thing about Taken, the French-made chase flick that launched the action-star phase of Liam Neeson’s career, is the way it bundles together a whole lot of parental and urban fears, then sublimates them into pummeling action. It’s a movie of relentless and reckless momentum, premised on a middle-age paranoid kook’s worst case scenario.

Taken 2 tried to one-up the original’s “kidnapped abroad” setup, but ended up producing something that only felt louder, uglier, and a lot less fun. Kudos to Taken 3, then, for at least trying something new. Instead of rescuing a family member from Albanian mobsters in yet another world capital, Bryan Mills—the throat-punching, elbow-chopping ex-CIA operative most people think of as simply “Liam Neeson”—finds himself framed for murder in L.A. It’s a conventional riff on The Fugitive, complete with Forest Whitaker in the Tommy Lee Jones role …

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