Taken, The Film Series: Where Does It Go From Here?
Starring Liam Neeson as Brian Mills, a former CIA operative" who is retired from the agency and now makes a living as a security officer for high ranking officials and rock stars, is divorced and has a daughter. His teenage daughter takes a trip to France with a friend. She calls him and while on the phone someone breaks into their room and takes the friend. He then calmly tells his daughter she's going to be taken. When they find her, one of the captors speaks with him. He informs the captor that he has "a particular set of skills" and will find him and kill him.
And he does just that.
Taken is a wonderful thrill a minute ride that makes every father wish he was as bad as Liam Neeson is. I mean, this guy is harsh! Vicious! Neeson is surprisingly fierce in the role for a 56 year old man and sells the viewer on his "skills".
Then came Taken 2.
The father of the bad guy in Taken decides on revenge. He goes after Neeson and capture him and his ex-wife. They almost get his daughter but she gets away. Later she helps her father escape with her mother. He then kills the bad guy, thus eliminating a son in Taken and a father in Taken 2. End of story, right?
Not quite. The screenwriters have a trilogy on their hands and with the money made in the first two films there is NO WAY they will not have a Taken 3 (or is it Tak3n? in order to pluck a few more feathers off of that golden goose. I mean after all Neeson can still kick butt at 60 and with the cutaway camera scenes available where an actor only has to through one or two punches at a time he can surely go one more movie, right?
You bet! On to Taken 3!
In Taken 3 Neeson's daughter is pregnant and he is trying to get back with his ex. Bad idea. Turns out her current husband is in with some bad dudes who go after her and kill her, setting it up to look like Neeson did her in. He goes after the new husband, finds out he owed the bad dude and spilled the beans on Neeson to save his hide.
Here he goes again. Bad guys dying hand over fist; Neeson at 63 is as mean as ever, still able to somehow survive getting his butt kicked and rise up to kill everyone in the room, and maybe some who weren't. Credits roll, he is still alive, his daughter is safe and going to have a baby making him a grandpa. Time for the fade to black on the series, right?
No way! Here are some ideas for the film to keep going; maybe not what Hollywood wants but personally I kind of like these ideas. How about you ?
Brian Mills has been through the mill and is retiring from the security detail he has operated since his other retirement, that from the CIA. As he leaves the Social Security Office his phone rings. Pulling it out of his pocket he squints his eyes as he tries to read the number. Giving up he flips it open and says
Coming through the tiny speaker a scratchy, smokers voice says "Brian Mills? You don't know me but I know you. And,"
"I've taken your dog."
Neesom stops, standing rigid and screams "Noooooo! Fluffy!!!!"
An evil chuckle interspersed with a hacking cough echoes through the phone. "Yes, we have your Maltese Fluffy. If you ever want to see her again, you will follow my directions exactly.
Of course, Neeson comes through once more in a thrill fest filled with explosions, car chases, doggy park quick steps in order to avoid the poo and who knows what else. Fans will be on the edge of their seat (I swear, one more minute and I'm outta here!) as they live vicariously through the 68 year old former operative on the silver screen as he struggles to regain his precious Fluffy from the horrible people who have taken her.
No more than he rescues his Fluffy and returns home when the phone rings again. He refuses to answer the phone this time, confident he has killed every bad guy who knows his name. Setting his Maltese down and giving her some food and water he fusses over her before heading off to the bathroom. When one reaches this advanced age, one cannot hold themselves for too long, you see.
As he settles in for a good, uhh number two he hears his phone ring in the other room. He cocks an ear because now the call is on his home phone. After a tense fifteen rings the answering machine picks up. Sitting quietly he strains to listen as the voice on the other end says
"Mills, we've taken your toilet roll! Ha ha ha ha ha!"
With a panicked look, he realizes he is stranded on the throne!
How ever will he escape this time?
Have I gone too far?
Mills wakes up in the night with some hunger pains. Chinese food always leaves him hungry for more so he wanders through the darkened house into the kitchen. Rubbing his bleary eyes he opens the refrigerator door and squints into the bright light. As his eyes clear and he can see, he notices his leftovers are gone. Confused, he then hears the phone ring.
"Who the hell can that be this time of night?" he wonders aloud in his gravelly voice. Picking up the phone, he hears a familiar voice.
"Hello Brian. WE'VE TAKEN YOUR LEFTOVERS! HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!"
"DAMN YOU!!!!!!! NOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!"
Finally settling in with the now cold leftover Chinese from last night, he takes a bite. But something is wrong. He chews once more before he notices....
Yes; they've taken his false teeth!
Taken 8 (yes, 8!)
Finally, Brian Mills is ready to relax. He's killed those who took his daughter; he and his ex-wife; who killed his ex-wife just as they were going to get back together; his dog Fluffy; his toilet roll; his food; and his teeth. Figuring there isn't much, if anything else they can take (where do these guys come from anyway?) he sets down into his recliner, intent on nothing more than becoming a couch potato for a while. Reaching over to where his remote is he grasps and searches but...
Furious, he makes a run for his phone knowing there will be a call any moment now. Standing there, sweating and with rage in his eyes he waits.
Confused, he goes back to sit down once more to wait for the call he is sure will come. As he settles in once more, a lump beneath him forces him to squirm a bit. Finally he leans forward and reaches beneath to find...
"Nooooooooo!!!" he screams to the apartment, empty but for an aging Fluffy who lifts her head from her pink queen's pillow to see what the devil is going on with her master this time. Seeing him seated in front of his TV, she drops her head back down and resumes sleeping while Mills screams out in frustration.
The writers have been having a little trouble finding viable storylines for the series, but they are intent on making it to double digits. They have a good read on where Taken 10 will go but 9, not so much. After a particularly poor brain storming session they head down to the local pub for a drink.
There they are met by a large friendly fellow with an accent who offers to buy them all a drink. Several rounds later they are developing a buzz about them when suddenly this friendly fellow demands they all leave together by the back door, telling them to come with him if they want to live. He indicates he has a gun and forces them out the door into a waiting van.
The friendly fellow then pulls out a cell phone and dials a number. Across town another phone rings.
"Hello? Is anybody there? Speak up or shut up and get off my phone!"
Then, a sinister voice with a familiar speech pattern comes on the line.
"Mills, we have taken your screenwriters. We are going to terminate them!"
In the background, Mills hears another voice.
"Yo, Adrian!!!!! We got 'em!!"
With a sudden realization he understands: Arnold and Sly have kidnapped his writers to force him to retire from the Taken series! They cannot stand that he is making this many sequels! That is their territory!
"Noooo!! (cough cough) Noooooooo!!!"
Taken 10 - The Final Chapter (we hope!)
Liam Neeson stars once more in the eternal struggle of Brian Mills, retired CIA operative with (diminishing) skills. As he relaxes on the beach in the Mediterranean his phone rings.
"Oh, God what now?" he muses as he hesitantly reaches for the phone and flips it open.
Why does he still have a flip phone, and why does he still have that number everyone knows? Just wondering.
As he draws in a deep breath, he braces for another dastardly voice, another threat to his family, friends, dog, food, whatever.
"Yeah hello, this is Mills. Whaddya want now?"
A low chuckle comes through the phone, giving him chills on the hot sandy beach. His attention is drawn to a particularly attractive eighty year old woman as she walks by on the beach. Shaking his head, he asks again "What do you want?"
Finally, a voice comes through. "We've taken your passport!"
"Nooo-. Wait, my passport?"
He hangs up the phone then tosses it into the water. "My passport. I can live with that." With that, he stands up semi erect, opens up his walker and begins chasing the octogenarian that had just passed him.
I hope you enjoyed my little foray into the world of Taken. My family and I have been having fun making up storylines for this series. We even had one where his grandmother was taken! I do apologize for this but really, it was crying out to be made fun of at some point, right?
I welcome your storylines should you have some ideas on what they can take from Brian Mills, former CIA operative with certain skills. Take care and remember to smile!