A Walk Among the Tombstones, or as the members of the SRU Podcast have dubbed it “Liam Neeson With a Gun Pt. 6″, is currently playing in theaters, but we’re already looking ahead to “Pt. 7″ in the series, Taken 3. This time, however, ex-CIA agent Bryan Mills (Neeson) won’t be employing his particular set of skills to save a kidnapped family member – he’ll be using them to clear his name, after being falsely accused of murder.
Neeson, when he was interviewed by USA Today, refrained from revealing who, exactly, Mills is framed for killing in Taken 3 – which, yes, is technically going to be titled Tak3n – though he promised that Mills’ daughter, Kim (Maggie Grace) won’t be kidnapped and/or travel outside the U.S. this time (“Bryan Mills would have to be certifiably locked up for bad parenting.”).
He instead offered the following, non-spoilery breakdown of the Taken 3 storyline:
“I have to go on the run, I’ll put it that way, from the not-so-lawful types and the lawful authorities. Bryan Mills served his country faithfully, but now even they are after him. They must not like me.”
Taken 3, like its predecessors, was scripted by Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen. By the sound of it, the third Taken movie will be in the same vein as the previous installments – which is to say, it will feature an action-driven B-movie narrative that has a pronounced social/political commentary subtext. A Tak3n website proclaims the movie’s tagline to be “He’s out of retirement for one last time”; be that accurate or not, Neeson has indeed said that “It’s a rollicking good story, but I think this is the end.”
Oscar-winner Forest Whitaker costars in Taken 3 as the “law enforcement agent” who starts out tracking down Mills; it’s pretty familiar territory for the lauded actor (see his roles in Phone Booth, The Last Stand), much as the seasoned badass role is for Neeson. Also back in the saddle is Famke Janssen as Lenore, Bryan Mills’ ex-wife, while Dougray Scott (Mission: Impossible II, Hemlock Grove) is among those who have joined the Taken franchise for the third chapter.
The Taken films are European pop-action thrillers and thus, by their very nature, tend to be better at creating a sensory thrill ride than making a whole lot of sense (Taken 2 was arguably more guilty of that than Taken 1). Taken 3, which features Taken 2 director Olivier Megaton back as the helmsman, shouldn’t break the mold, but it could improve on the second installment – at the least, maybe feel a little fresher.
If not then, as Neeson indicated, this installment should bring some sense of closure to the Taken movie franchise. Don’t worry, those who aren’t ready for Neeson to hang up his action star cap yet, “Liam Neeson With a Gun Pt. 8″ (or, as Warner Bros. is calling it, Run All Night) is already scheduled to arrive on the scene but a few months after Taken 3 is released.
Taken 3 (a.k.a. Tak3n) opens in U.S. theaters on January 9th, 2015.