Taken

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First of a series of Liam Neeson action vehicles. Renowned by for its ludicrously entertaining French stereotypes - a policeman with a baguette under his arm ("who then retreats and collaborates, doesn't have a bath and smells of cheese", according to Mark and Simon - and the way the main character's daughter was kidnapped during a U2 concert.

It was Taken that spawned the now iconic question, "Who's driving the boat?"

The film was noted for its strong xenophobia, in the way that pretty much everyone foreign that Neeson meets is really bad. Throughout the review, Mark reflected this by referring to Europe as "Yerp", in a way similar to George W Bush.

The BBFC guidelines for the film noted that it contained a "crunchy scene" in which a man has a truck thrown at him "and one muffled use of bad language" - the muffling presumably coming from beneath the truck.

Neeson's interview with Simon Mayo to promote the film was notorious for how catatonic Neeson ("Hreeammm Reessssuummm") was, mumbling his way through in a sleepy after-lunch way.

Taken was not released in the US until February 2009, at which point there was another brief flurry of correspondence about it - not least extensive quoting of Anthony Lane's New Yorker review:

"Kim and a friend leave for a vacation in Europe, where, ignoring the advice of her father, they are abducted with such consummate speed that it might have been simpler if he had FedExed them directly to the kidnappers. Pausing only to borrow a private jet from his ex’s slimy husband, Mills flies to Paris, where he proceeds to work his way, without mercy, through a personal alphabet of undesirable aliens. This being a brisk affair, of little more than ninety minutes, he gets only as far as Albanians and Arabs, but, if I were an innocent Bermudan, let alone a Belgian, I would be starting to get nervous about a sequel."

The film was succeeded by Taken 2 The Cleaners, by which point the quality of the work had seriously deteriorated - not to mention Murder On The Snorient Express.