After watching the first five minutes, I realised I have not actually seen the first film. I think I had confused another Neeson film ‘Unknown’ – in which his wife is ‘taken’, kind of.
Anyway, despite that and a slow start establishing the crucial relationships with ex-wife and daughter we are soon transported to Istanbul.
I’m not sure how the Turkish authorities deal with film-makers in their country, but I’m impressed with their liberal attitude. Istanbul was made to look like a terrifying shit hole. I’m sure the tourist board are absolutely fine that their magnificent, historic city was made to look like a medieval warren of poverty, misery and general scariness. There wasn’t even the obligatory sunset vista across the Bosphorus.
I also noticed a lot of Niqab wearing women, despite the fact that very few Islamic women wear the veil in Istanbul. I don’t recall any positive roles for anyone Turkish or Algerian for that matter, the overriding message being that you just can’t trust any of them – even when you have their word they will shoot you in the back.
Upon returning to shots of L.A. we were of course treated to magnificent golden skylines and ice-cream on the pier. Could the film industry be manipulating their audience at all?
Anyway, the film itself was suitably tense and the baddies very poorly organised, ineffective at searching people and crap at using their full range of weaponry. It’s just as well or Liam’s nice leather jacket would probably have got in the way and he wouldn’t have been able to execute them all so mercilessly.
Note to tourists (who have not been put off from going anywhere near Istanbul): It appears to be fine to casually lob hand-grenades around the old city with little consideration of the consequences and even if the police are notified they are crap drivers who run into each other.