This movie is brimming with those actors you always remember from somewhere else. Bruce Wayne’s dad, Lady Mary, Peter Russo, and Patsey are all prominent characters. But the cast is mostly wasted, especially Lupita who didn’t really do much of anything. Liam Neeson plays to type, not really matching his best works of late, but not quite just honing it in yet. The story follows a typical suspense actioner route, with a great premise and some good tension but without a satisfying finale.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen a kids movie so consistently funny and purely entertaining. Every character was distinct and I would be hard pressed to choose a favorite. I was pleasantly surprised by how many LEGO franchises made cameos. And the animation blew me away. The dedication to keeping everything 100% LEGO produced astounding cohesion and immersion. A definite candidate for best film of 2014.
Director Luc Besson has a penchant for making sequels that don’t do much more than attempt to re-show what made his originals so entertaining. Fortunately, that formula still makes for a fairly entertaining ride. Taken 2 didn’t have the glee-inducing scenes of badassery the first did, but it was still pretty fun. It’s hard not to enjoy Liam Neeson kicking ass. It took entirely too long for anyone to actually get “taken” though. A lame car chase with his daughter driving also induced some eye-rolling.
I wanted to see wolves hunting a pack of scared men with very little plot to muck it up. And I received just that, but with a heaping helping of style and symbolism that just plain worked for me. Just watching their icicle-laden beards made you feel the frozen desolation. Beautiful Alaskan landscapes too.
First of all, the “next three days” of the movie, the few days after you escape that it is hardest not to get caught, are not clear, nor are they important. Poor title choices aside, the movie felt like it was three days long. It did a good job at showing the slow, deliberate, and methodical dedication that a jailbreak would take, but that method of story eliminates the suspense. Not a terrible, but an entirely ephemeral experience.