Taken is the 86th episode of Screen Junkies comedy series Honest Trailers. It was written by Dan Murrell, Spencer Gilbert and Andy Signore. It was narrated by Jon Bailey as Epic Voice Guy. It parodies the 2008 action thriller film Taken, along with its 2012 sequel Taken 2. The video was published on January 6, 2015, to coincide with the theatrical release of the sequel Taken 3. It is 4 minutes and 5 seconds long. It has been viewed over 6.1 million times.
"Two films that confirm every overprotective dad's worst fears and show off every ugly stereotype we have about foreigners, while sending Americans everywhere an important message: don't go to Europe." ~ Honest Trailers - Taken
For over thirty years, you've watched him shine in dramas like Husbands and Wives, Kinsey, and Schindler's List. Now, witness the franchise that finally paid for Liam Neeson's kids' college educations: Taken.
Suit up for movies that are all about kidnapping, where no one uses the word "kidnapped" (shows clips of Bryan Mills saying "taken"), in these high-octane spy thrillers that aren't as smart as Bourne or as cool as Bond, but feature way more beatdowns of guys who look like your Uber driver.
Meet Bryan Mills, an elite ex-CIA agent with a really bad pension plan (Bryan Mills: I can tell you I don't have money.). He has a very particular set of skills (Bryan Mills: But what I do have are a very particular set of skills.), skills like scrapbooking, photography, gift-wrapping, junkie rehabilitation, and...car detailing? But most of all, he's got the skills that make him a nightmare for people who don't want their throats destroyed (shows clips of villains being hit in the neck or strangled). When his family is kidna- I mean, taken, Bryan will do whatever it takes to get them back, whether that means stealing someone's cab, stealing someone else's cab, shooting an innocent woman, destroying a construction yard, destroying a market, destroying a train, destroying a U.S. embassy, or making his daughter toss three live grenades into the streets of Istanbul. No one in Europe is safe from Liam Neeson.
Bryan Mills: I will tear down the Eiffel Tower if I have to!
Whoa, okay, dude. Relax.
So before the release of the third and final takening, re-experience the first Taken, where the world's most Irish-sounding American saves the world's oldest-looking teenager from some of the world's hairiest criminals. Then, since it was way more successful than anyone expected, watch them pull a Hangover and do the exact same thing for Taken 2, where the world's oldest-looking teenager saves the world's Irishiest American from the most interesting man in the world (Murad Hoxha). Stay vengeful, my friends.
So enjoy these two films that confirm every overprotective dad's worst fears and show off every ugly stereotype we have about foreigners, while sending Americans everywhere an important message: don't go to Europe.
Starring Darkman (Liam Neeson as Bryan Mills), Fancy Janssen (Famke Janssen as Lenore Mills-St. John), Kim Bauer (Maggie Grace as Kim Mills), Traitorous Frenchman (Olivier Rabourdin as Jean-Claude Pitrel), Eastern European Criminal #1 (Anatol Taubman as Dardan), Eastern European Criminal #2 (Arben Bajraktaraj as Marko Hoxha), Eastern European Criminal #3 (Jalil Naciri as Ali), Eastern European Criminal #4 (Alain Figlarz as Suko), Eastern European Criminal Number...(sighs) you get the idea (Rade Šerbedžija as Murad Hoxha), and Liam's Nissan.
Bryan Mills: What is this?
Lenore Mills-St. John: It's U2's European tour dates.
She left the country to follow U2 around? Ughhh, I'd rather be taken.
- Screen Junkies have produced Honest Trailers for several other action thrillers like the Mission: Impossible series, The Bourne Trilogy, the James Bond film Spectre, and John Wick, among many others. See list of Honest Trailers for more.
- An Honest Trailer Commentary for this episode was recorded and was available on the Screen Junkies Plus until the website/app was discontinued. Screen Junkies don't currently have any way of releasing the video.
Honest Trailers - Taken has an 98.8% approval rating from YouTube viewers. Geek Tyrant wrote that the Honest Trailer was "pretty fantastic" and contained "some great observations." CinemaBlend said "those adorable rapscallions over at Screen Junkies" have highlighted the ways in which the Taken films are "over-the-top, preposterously plotted, and have a 50-year-old playing an action star." IndieWire said the the Taken films are "pretty dumb" and the Honest Trailer "seems like shooting a fish in a barrel." IndieWire agreed with the Honest Trailer that the film contains the "standard tropes" including "throat punches, swarthy bad guys, lots of cell phone calls, and explosions."
Production credits Edit
Voiceover Narration by Jon Bailey
Title design by Robert Holtby
Edited by Dan Murrell & Jason Inman
- Taken And Taken 2 Get Taken Down With An Honest Trailer - CinemaBlend article
- Watch: Honest Trailer For ‘Taken’ & ‘Taken 2’ Explores Liam Neeson’s Special Skills - IndieWire article
- Honest Trailer for Liam Neeson's TAKEN - Geek Tyrant article
- Liam Neeson’s ‘Taken’ Gets An Honest Trailer - Geeks of Doom article
- ‘Taken’ Honest Trailer confirms: These movies are dumb, offensive and ridiculous - Uproxx article