A former CIA operative sets about tracking down his teenage daughter and her best friend, after the two girls are kidnapped by human traffickers for sexual slavery while traveling in France. How well do you remember the 2008 thriller, Taken?
Why did CIA field operative Bryan Mills retire?
Retired CIA field operative Bryan Mills attempts to build a closer relationship with his daughter. However, being absent for the first 16 years of her life makes that difficult. Bryan Mills is portrayed by Liam Neeson, an actor from Northern Ireland. Neeson rose to prominence in the 1993 Oscar winner, Schindler's List, and has starred in dozens of box-office hits He has been nominated for a number of awards, including an Academy Award for Best Actor, a BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role, and three Golden Globe Awards for Best Actor in a Motion Picture Drama. Empire magazine ranked Neeson among both the 100 Sexiest Stars in Film History and The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time.
Although retired, Bryan has a security job to earn extra money, protecting what sort of celebrity, when the movie opens?
Bryan helps provide security at a concert for pop star Sheerah. The pop star is played by Holly Valance, an Australian actress, singer, songwriter, and model. Valance began her career as Felicity "Flick" Scully on the Australian soap opera, Neighbours. In 2002, she released her first album, Footprints, which included the single, Kiss Kiss.
What is the name of Bryan Mills’ daughter?
Kim is the name of Bryan Mills’ daughter. She lives with her mother and her wealthy stepfather. Kim is portrayed by Maggie Grace, an actress, best known for her roles as Shannon Rutherford on Lost and Kim Mills in the Taken trilogy. She starred in The Fog, Suburban Girl, The Jane Austen Book Club, and Malice in Wonderland, and she appears in the sixth season of Californication.
Who talks Bryan into taking the security job?
Sam Gilroy (Leland Orser), Mark Casey (Jon Gries) and Bernie Harris (David Warshofsky) are friends of Bryan and are concerned about how Bryan is doing, being retired. They offer him a freelance security job that they will all work together -- just like old times. All of Liam Neeson's character's ex-agency friends were played by actors who had previous roles in spy or cop thriller television shows and movies. Jon Gries played a major role in The Pretender, Leland Orser was in both The Pretender and 24, and David Warshofsky had appeared in minor roles in numerous similar shows.
What happens during the concert security job?
Sheerah is overrun with fans when a gate is left open. Bryan takes the lead to get Sheerah into her car and, while doing so, saves Sheerah from a violent stalker. Bryan comforts Sheerah as she breaks down, realizing she could have been killed. Out of gratitude, Sheerah offers to have Bryan's daughter, Kim, assessed as a singer. Former Special Air Service (SAS) soldier Mick Gould trained Liam Neeson in combative and weapons-handling skills to prepare him for the role of Bryan Mills.
What does Bryan get Kim as a present for her 17th birthday?
Bryan remembers that Kim wanted to be a singer once, so he gets her a karaoke machine. Lenore tells Bryan disdainfully, that Kim doesn’t want to be a singer now. Famke Janssen portrays Lenore. Janssen is a Dutch actress, director, screenwriter, and former fashion model. She played Xenia Onatopp in GoldenEye, Jean Grey/Phoenix in the X-Men film series, and Ava Moore on Nip/Tuck. She is also known for her role in the TV series Hemlock Grove and How to Get Away with Murder. Janssen is scheduled to star in the 2016–2017 season crime thriller, The Blacklist: Redemption, on NBC.
What did Kim’s stepfather give her for a present?
The stepfather, Stuart St. John, gives her a thoroughbred horse for her 17th birthday. She is ecstatic, as she is a rider. Stuart is portrayed by Xander Berkeley. Berkeley is known for his television roles, including George Mason on the political thriller series 24, Percy Rose on the series Nikita, and Sheriff Thomas McAllister on The Mentalist.
What does Kim want permission from her father to do?
Kim asks her father for permission to travel to Paris with her best friend Amanda. He initially refuses, but eventually agrees after Lenore pressures him. Katie Cassidy portrays Amanda. Cassidy has appeared in When a Stranger Calls, Black Christmas, and Supernatural. In 2009, Cassidy became a cast member of the series Harper's Island and Melrose Place. She had a supporting role in A Nightmare on Elm Street and a recurring role during the fourth season of Gossip Girl.
When Bryan gets Kim’s luggage out of the car at the airport, what does he learn?
At the airport, Bryan learns that Kim lied to him. Both Kim and Amanda are actually planning to follow the band U2 during their European tour -- something Lenore knew, but kept from him. He is worried about leaving her unprotected and on her own in Europe. He tells Kim to call him when she lands.
Who do Amanda and Kim meet when they land in Paris?
Upon arriving at Charles de Gaulle International Airport, Kim and Amanda meet a young man named Peter (Nicolas Giraud), who offers to share a taxi to learn more about them. Nicolas Giraud is a French actor and filmmaker. He has starred in Like a Star Shining in the Night, The Extraordinary Adventures of Adele Blanc-Sec, Voir la mer, Far from Men, and Anton Tchekhov 1890, playing the title role. He is also the writer, director, and editor of the short film Faiblesses.
What happens in Amanda’s cousins’ apartment?
Kim and Amanda plan to go to Amanda's cousins' apartment, only for Kim to find that the cousins are in Spain. While Kim takes a call from her father, she witnesses Amanda being abducted by strange men in the living room. Kim will be abducted next. In the film, Katie Cassidy's character, Amanda, is 19 years old and Maggie Grace's character, Kim, is 17 years old. In real life, Grace is older than Cassidy by three years.
What happens to Kim?
Kim follows her father's instructions so he can learn as much as he can. After she is dragged out from underneath the bed, Kim yells the description of her abductors. Doing this film propelled actress Famke Janssen (the mother, Lenore) to take action in the real-life fight against corruption. She now serves as the Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.
What descriptions does Kim call out?
Just before the kidnappers take Kim, she yells out, "Beard. Six feet. Tattoo right hand, moon and star." With her description and the phone picking up the conversation the abductors were having, Bryan learns enough information to start tracking down his daughter.
When Bryan hears the cell phone being picked up, which of these lines does he say?
Bryan suspects someone has picked up the phone, and so he threatens the kidnappers with this monologue. Here is part, but not all of it: "I don't know who you are. I don't know what you want. If you are looking for ransom, I can tell you I don't have money. But what I do have are a very particular set of skills, skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you.”
Which of these other lines does Bryan say into the phone?
Bryan vows to hunt the kidnapper down and kill him if he does not release his daughter. Not only is this monologue memorable, but also it has won the Golden Schmoes Award for Best Line. Did you notice that before any action takes place, Bryan already has scratches on the left side of his face, hinting at his "spare time" activities?
What two words does the kidnapper say before he hangs up?
Two words, “Good Luck,” are all the kidnapper says into the phone. Arben Bajraktaraj portrays the kidnapper. Bajraktaraj is an Albanian actor who has starred in numerous French films. He has also had minor roles in international movies, such as Eden Log and Sex Traffic. He has frequently portrayed Albanian crime syndicate operatives in films, including Taken and Verso. He is also well known for his role as the Death Eater Antonin Dolohov in the Harry Potter films.
What does Bryan learn after the phone conversation is analyzed by Sam, his CIA pal?
Sam (Leland Orser), an old friend and former colleague of Bryan’s, deduces the kidnappers are part of an Albanian sex trafficking ring. Sam tells Bryan he has about 96 hours to find her, then she will be impossible to track. Leland Orser, who portrays Sam, is primarily a character actor. He has appeared in small roles in a wide variety of films and television series, including Chief of Surgery Dr. Lucien Dubenko on the television series ER.
While investigating Amanda’s cousin’s apartment, what does Bryan find?
Using Stuart's private plane, Bryan travels to Paris, enters the apartment, and finds Kim’s cell phone with a memory card that has a picture showing Peter in a reflection. Did you know that Liam Neeson expected the film to bomb? However, he signed on in order spend four months in Paris and learn karate while playing the kind of role he had rarely been offered in the past. Ironically, the film was a hit and created a new onscreen image for Neeson as an action hero.
What happens when Bryan finds Peter?
Bryan finds Peter at the airport and tries to capture him, but, while fleeing, Peter is hit and killed by a truck. With his only lead dead, Bryan turns to an old contact, French former intelligence agent Jean-Claude Pitrel, who now has a desk job at the same agency.
Who says this? “Bryan, you cannot just run around, tearing down Paris.”
Jean-Claude informs him of the local red-light district where the Albanian prostitution ring operates, but warns him with the above quote. This is Bryan’s answer: “Jean-Claude, I will tear down the Eiffel Tower if I have to.” Over the course of the movie, Bryan kills 35 people in order to get to his daughter.
Who does Bryan hire to help him with leads to track Kim?
Having been contacted to translate Albanian, Gregor Milocivic meets Bryan Mills in his car. Bryan then pays him to translate the Albanian spoken through a bug he planted earlier on a mobster. Gregor says the men are talking about "fresh merchandise" giving them trouble at a brothel. Gregor gives Bryan an English-Albanian dictionary and exits the car, then Bryan follows one of the mobsters to the brothel.
What meaningful thing does Bryan find at the brothel?
With help from a hired Albanian translator, Bryan infiltrates a temporary brothel in a construction yard, where he finds a young woman who has Kim's denim jacket. The jacket is very recognizable; however, the woman wasn’t Kim. The Albanian translator is played by Goran Kostic, an actor and producer, known for Taken, In the Land of Blood and Honey, and Children of Men.
What does Bryan do at the construction site/temporary brothel?
After a firefight with the mobsters, Bryan takes the girl and the jacket to a hotel, where he gives the girl an intravenous drip to counteract the drugs in her system. Then Bryan questions her about where she got the jacket. She tells him of a safe house where the Albanians keep abductees. Did you know that Jeff Bridges was first cast as Bryan Mills? However, after Bridges dropped out of the project, Liam Neeson accepted the part which led into a successful series of films.
How does Bryan infiltrate the safe house?
Posing as Jean-Claude, Bryan enters the house. After pretending to re-negotiate the price of police protection, he identifies Marko, the man he spoke to on the phone. Bryan subdues him and kills all the other gangsters. Bryan realizes that Jean-Claude is in cahoots with the Albanians -- which is why Jean-Paul wants Bryan out of Paris and will use the police force to oust him. Did you know the martial art style used by Liam Neeson is Nagasu Do, a hybrid style that borrows from Judo, Aikido, and Jiu Jitsu?
How does Bryan identify Marko?
Bryan asks Marko to translate some Albanian words written on a piece of paper. The words mean “good luck” in English. When Marko utters these words, Bryan knows he has his man. Bryan then tortures Marko for information. Marko explains that virgins have high value in the black market, so Kim was sold quickly. Once Marko gives the buyer's name as Patrice Saint-Clair, Bryan leaves him to die in agony from continuous electrocution.
How does Bryan find out the location of Patrice Saint-Clair?
Bryan visits Jean-Claude to get information on the whereabouts of Saint-Clair. Time is ticking and when Saint-Clair comes to the dinner table with a handgun, Bryan (who has emptied the shells from the gun prior to this) shoots Jean-Claude's wife in the shoulder to coerce the Frenchman into providing Saint-Clair's location. It works. Jean-Claude's wife, Isabelle, is portrayed by Camille Japy, an actress known for her roles in Bicycling with Molière and It Boy.
What does Bryan find in the basement of Saint-Clair’s manor?
Bryan attends a secret sex slave auction beneath Saint-Clair's manor by knocking out the waiter who was bringing champagne. As soon as Kim comes up for sale, Bryan forces Ali, an Arab bidder, to purchase her. Jalil Naciri, who portrays Ali, is an actor and producer, known for C.I.D. and Munich.
How does Bryan find out where Kim is taken after the auction?
While making his way out of Saint-Clair’s mansion, Bryan is knocked out and chained to a pipe, but he manages to escape, killing more of Saint-Clair’s bodyguards. Seeing Saint-Clair, Bryan puts a gun to him and asks where Kim has been taken. Saint-Clair tells him that Kim is being taken to a yacht owned by a sheik named Raman. Then Bryan kills him. Saint-Clair is portrayed by Gérard Watkins, an English-French actor, playwright, director, and songwriter.
How does Bryan get on the yacht owned by Sheik Raman?
Bryan jumps off the Pont des Arts, a pedestrian-only bridge in Paris, to get on Sheik Raman’s yacht. In the scene, the bridge is desolate, whereas most nights people flock there to socialize, drink wine, and play the guitar. After Bryan knocks out the bodyguards, he does hand-to-hand combat with Ali. The curved knife used in the final fight is a karambit. It is a Filipino weapon, and the finger hole in the handle makes it very difficult to disarm, which was evident in the fight scene. Bryan then breaks down the sheik’s door and kills the sheik as he holds a knife to Kim’s throat.
How does the movie end?
Bryan brings Kim back to the United States and she is greeted by her mother and Stuart. Afterward, Bryan tells Kim there is someone he wants her to meet. They go to Sheerah’s house, where a voice coach will decide if her voice has merit. The pop singer's name in the movie is Sheerah. In Hebrew, shirah is the feminine form of the word meaning "sing."
Who answers Bryan? Bryan: “Any advice for my daughter?” “Yeah, tell her to find another line of work.”
Before Bryan saved Sheerah’s life from a stalker with a knife, Sheerah didn’t want to be bothered by Bryan. She answered Bryan’s question about advice for her daughter flippantly. Afterward, she is grateful to Bryan for his protection. Did you know that numerous media outlets have cited this film as a turning point in Neeson's career, redefining and transforming him into an action film star?
How can you enjoy more of the Taken story?
In November 2010, Fox announced that EuropaCorp would produce a sequel directed by Olivier Megaton. Taken 2 was subsequently released with Neeson, Janssen, Grace, Gries, Rabourdin, and Orser reprising their roles from the first film. A third Taken film was released December 16, 2014. The TV series will take place before the events of the Taken movie trilogy. The release date is set for February 27, 2017.
What did the critics think of the film?
Taken received mixed reviews. According to review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, 58% of 168 critics gave the film a positive review, for a rating average of 5.8 out of 10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Taken is undeniably fun with slick action, but is largely a brainless exercise."
What did the fans think of the film?
The audience gave it 85% on Rotten Tomatoes. It was a huge financial success. On a budget of $22 million, it earned $226.8 million in box office sales. In CinemaScore polls conducted during the opening weekend, audiences gave the film an average grade of A-, on an A+ to F scale.
In which category was this film nominated for a Saturn Award?
Taken received a nomination for Best International Film from the Saturn Awards. The film also won the BMI Film Music Award from Broadcast Music, Inc. Also, the famous monologue won the Golden Schmoes Award!
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