Knee-jerk review: "Taken"

1. It's pretty frakkin' awesome.
2. There's a lot of Hollywood actors we think could make for a good action hero. But Liam Neeson isn't one of them.
3. Until now.
4. The Cheese Fry wishes he could thrash anyone with just a few quick moves like Neeson's character. How much fun would that be?
5. Enough with the rapid, jittery chop-chop-chop editing and zooms and pans in action sequences. We get it. Things are all, like, crazy and kinetic when the adrenaline's flowing and asses are being kicked and cars are getting crashed. Woo hoo! Just remember that audiences sometimes, every so often, like to see what's happening on screen.
6. Famke Jannsen is 44 and still smoking hot.
7. Love the dropping-the-bullets-onto-the-table bit. Wow.
8. Would you let your 17-year-old daughter go unaccompanied to Paris? Neither would we.
9. A lot of folks get killed in this movie, but there's a surprising lack of blood. Credit the PG-13 rating.
10. The class warfare element of the story, in which the very rich prove to be very evil, will surely strike a chord in today's culture.
11. The script can be cheesy and simplistic, but it's also very efficient, especially in the first 20 minutes when we meet the characters and understand their situations.
12. It's a lot like the Mel Gibson movie Payback, but with more likable characters and less over-the-top violence.
13. Neeson has a number of great "don't mess with me" moments with scum and villainy that will make you want to clap your hands. It's that kind of movie.
14. It's also the kind of movie that works best if you disengage the logic portion of your brain. Neeson's success depends on a number of lucky happenstances and coincidences that fequently happen to dashing A-list actors. (Okay, maybe Neeson is B-list. You're so picky.)
15. Go see it.

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