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  • Bryan makes it perfectly clear that he only cares about the sexual slavery ring to the extent that they have abducted his daughter, and repeatedly offers to leave them in peace if they let her go. Apparently, he's alright with other people's daughters being abducted, drugged, and raped by sadists.
    • It's not at all that he's "alright" with it. It's that his goal is to get his daughter back, and he knows that as badass as he is, he alone isn't going to be able to put an end to the whole thing.
      • Except, you know, that he proceeds to do exactly that. He doesn't get all the customers, but he kills the Albanian suppliers and the ringleader (and most of Mooks, too).
      • You think a couple dozen guys in one city is the entire operation? Really?
      • Seemed like a sizeable chunk of it. And considering the attention they'll be getting from the French police...
      • See the Fridge Brilliance entry in the main page. He causes enough damage to get the police's attention, and they are much better at helping the sex slaves instead of just himself.
        • Except for the implications of police incompetence/corruption. Will the sex slaves actually end up any better off?
          • Yeah, most likely. Crooked cops usually do their jobs if the bad guys get exposed (and I don't think that many dead bad guys can go unnoticed), because doing their jobs is the best way to cover-up their prior crookedness.
      • Also keep in mind that Brian wasn't exactly a 'hero' as the term is generally used. He comments early about some of the terrible things that can happen to people overseas, and knows too well about them. He knows he can't save every girl and shut down the entire operation, but has at least a ghost of a chance of saving his daughter. If he kills a few dozen guys along the way, at least that's progress.
    • Why should he care? It's established that he's former black ops and that would require a certain amount of moral flexibility. It's quite possible that he really doesn't care about the sexual slavery ring except for where his daughter is concerned. We just happen to be very sympathetic. The movie is all about the lengths he'll go to to save his daughter, not about the lengths he'll go to to stop this crime.
      • To be fair, there's that one scene where he takes one girl from a brothel in ( she had a jacket that her daughter was wearing the last time he saw her), and you could tell just by the look on his face as he was cleaning out the drugs from her system that he felt bad for her. I mean, it's not like he doesn't care about other girls being sold on the market, but the important thing was 'My baby's missing, and I'm kicking ass just to get her back'.
    • Hes not a superhero, hes a man with limited resources outside of his own skillset and on a tight schedule. Hes not out to save the world, hes trying to save his daughter. He had to keep his eye on the ball and think practically.
  • The villains switch from smuggling in and enslaving illegal immigrants to kidnapping several rich white foreigners PER DAY, and from luring their targets to abandoned buildings to nabbing them out of their rooms WHILE THEY ARE ON THE PHONE
    • In regards to switching over to rich white foreigners, this troper's International Perspectives on Women professor (who saw this movie on this troper's recommendation while we were covering sex-trafficking in class) claimed that this made sense because said foreigners are going to have a much healthier pedigree than poorer European women and fetch a higher price from wealthier clients.
      • This troper wonders just how much of a benefit that really is if the traffickers are then going to enforce their victim's compliance by addicting them to intravenously injected drugs.
      • That was for the ones who weren't considered high-dollar.
        • No it wasn't, remember how the auctioneer referred to her? "As usual, we've saved the best for last, and she was clearly doped up
          • There are plenty of sedatives that are non-addictive, which is likely what they used to keep the high price girls docile until the transfer could be made.
          • It could very well have been something as simple as a mouthful of NyQuil to shut her up. They wouldn't exactly want her bawling her eyes out in front of buyers and it wouldn't spoil the product.
          • That depends on the type of buyer you're pitching to *shudder*
    • The villains also seem to have poor impulse control: at first their "recruiter" invites the girls to a party their first evening in Paris (which the audience can tell is a trap in the making), but apparently the bad guys decide to just go ahead and grab them that afternoon. So why bother with the fake party invitation at all?
      • Because after he invited them to the Party, they proceed to tell him they are alone, and where they live inside the building. We need a translator, but I guess he then told his peeps: "Hey, let´s just grab em right there, nobody will know." or does so off screen. It could also just have been a thing to keep the "friendly" facade...
  • Was it ever covered exactly why there was somebody trying to assassinate an early-20's pop singer?
    • Well, it happens with a lot of crazy male fans who believe "if I can't have her, nobody can", as the botched attempt on Japanese singer-and-voice actress Mizuki Nana shows.
    • Same reason someone thought it'd be a good idea to shoot John Lennon, presumably.
  • Nothing is ever done to show if Amanda's family was ever notified of their daughter's murder by overdose, or what actions they took if they were.
    • Does it matter? The movie was centered on Bryan saving his daughter. He did that, end of story. Amanda was a plot device to get Kim to Paris, and her death was included just to tie up the loose end.
  • It's never really made clear how long it took Bryan and Kim to get back to America, considering Bryan's all bandaged up and would have possibly needed to chat with the French authorities about that long list of murder victims he's tallied up.
    • The implication is that the entire French legal system in this regard is corrupt. In that scenario it makes more sense for the French to let Bryan leave quietly and quickly, since if he was brought up on charges the whole story had a good chance of coming out, not to mention the diplomatic implications for the US and France at large given Bryan's former occupation.
  • Nor have there been any mention of Jean-Claude. Was he arrested or kicked out of the department for his connections to the traffickers? What did his wife think of her husband now she knew of his connections?
      • Jean-Claude never had any connections to the traffickers; he was aware that his boss was involved, but was only too happy to look the other way.
        • He was happy to look the other way because he was being paid off. That's one hell of a connection.
    • Probably Jean-Claude greased the wheels to get it all covered up. And the wife doesn't really get the whole story from Bryan, he probably talked his way out of it.
  • Why has no one thought about that girl with Kim's jacket? Are we supposed to assume she found her own lost half-naked way back home?
    • There was a phone in her room, wasn't there? She could just call home.
  • Now, first of all, I am aware that there are a lot of very sick people in the world, but are there really people in the world who pay up to half a million dollars for women who are drugged out of their minds and can't even stand up straight? Not that buying and enslaving people is ever a good thing, but come on! The same goes for the johns on the construction site. Like I said, there might be people who would be sick enough to not care if the prostitute they are having sex with is barely conscious and is obviously being forced into prostitution, but are there enough of them for the Albanians to make a living off of them? To me, these people seemed even sicker than those Albanians.
    • You ARE aware these girls were in fact virgins, right? They fetch a much higher price in the sex-slaver market.
    • High School biology teacher here. You can't easily tell if human females are virgins. The hymen is just a little ring of skin, and it varies in thickness and width. Real Life gynecologists have been asked by parents to verify whether their daughter has had sex, all they can say generally is "maybe, maybe not" unless evidence of recent vigorous sexual activity is present. Absence of that and "virginity" are two different things and even if they were virgins, the clients paid big bucks to be her first rapist? I for one am incredulous.
    • The ones fetching the half-million dollars weren't the ones drugged out of their minds.
    • The daughter could still barely stand on her feet and was in a daze. Besides, I'm sure she had to be sedated somehow before getting in that room in that outfit.
      • I disagree. She could stand well enough, and was lucid as soon as she saw Daddy come in. I think the "daze" wasn't chemically induced, but what happens when a 17-year-old girl is realizing that she's going to spend the rest of her life as some rich sicko's sex slave.
    • For Half a million, I'm surprised one couldn't just tempt a consenting virgin for sex. This guy is a millionaire who owns his own yacht; he should be covered in gold digging, trophy virgins. Yet he has to resort to greasy sex traffickers to get sex?
    • Arguably no one has to resort to the sex trafficking trade in order to 'get' sex -- some people presumably just find the power imbalance in such a relationship a turn-on.
    • This part was rather strange, if you think about it. For 500.000 dollars, they could easily just kidnap a virgin and cover it up. Chances are, they were just turned on by the thought of 'buying' another human being, or they had so much money that they could just spend twice the money they would actually need for the sake of convenience, especially because, once they bought a girl, it would be nearly impossible for the police to track them down. Kidnapping someone with their own henchmen wouldn't be so easy.
    • This is very much Truth in Television. Sex trafficking is a huge problem throughout the world (even in the United States) and wealthy individuals like the Sheik are more than willing to pay top dollar to get a particular kind of girl. These men are essentially just rapists with money enough to get someone else to do the dirty work.
    • The girls are expensive but the important thing is they're reusable. A girl can be bought, raped and resold countless times. Multiply the number of times a day they get raped by the cost of admission and divide that number by how much she cost you in the first place and thats how many days until she starts turning a profit.
  • Did anyone else hate the mother? I felt that she was the most unsympathetic person in the whole film. When we first see her, she is going off on Bryan for coming to his daughter's birthday party. Then she goes off on him because he bought a gift for her. That's weird anti-social behavior to treat anyone like that unless they were an Abusive Parent. Bryan obviously wasn't. I never could fathom why she was so rude and hateful towards him. Sure, he was gone a lot but that's not all that bad. I could see it being grounds for divorce but certainly not grounds to be a Jerkass. Besides, it's not like Bryan was just some blue-collar worker who had little to no reason to be gone so often. He was in the CIA. He had his reasons... like y'know, saving the world. If he was a jerk who left the house too often, shouldn't she at least commend him for making the attempt to come back into his daughter's life? Or at the very least, pretend to be civil for the sake of their child and not look like a total Country Matters? Kim was cool with him so it's not like there were any emotional scars from him being gone so often. Later, she gets mad because Bryan was showing concern that his 17 year old daughter was flying off to France with no adult supervision. She has her daughter blatantly lie to her own father on top of all that. And worst of all, at no point does she admit that she was wrong or apologize to Bryan for all the shit she was pulling. I mean, it's entirely her fault that her daughter was kidnapped. I would've loved if the movie ended with him roundhouse kicking her in the face.
    • This Troper absolutely concurs with you (as, in fact, does the entire "Taken" board on IMDb).
    • To this troper, complaints of this nature seem to boil down to "Why is she so mean, doesn't she know that her husband is a goddamn superhero?" There are a lot of folks that take their career down a notch or two once they have a family. Considering we don't have any idea, just how absent a father he was, I don't really have a problem with it.
      • It was pretty obvious she still harboured some resentment from the divorce. Until he saved Kim, of course. And it wasn't her fault. She made mistakes, the girls made mistakes, but it was actually the Albanians "fault".
      • He aborted a mission once just to visit his daughter...he got reassigned to Alaska for that. It´s not like he didn´t want too, it´s more like that he would see her LESS if he tried to see her more.
    • And then the Fridge Logic sets in: Everything you said above is true, but in the end, none of it matters. They were kidnapped within hours of arriving in Paris. Even if they had been telling the truth, and had planned to spend the whole time in Europe visiting museums in Paris, things would have turned out exactly the same. The only lie that ends up mattering is Amanda's lie that the cousins would be staying with them. The mother knew nothing about that lie. So, ultimately, their situation is Amanda's fault, not the mother's.
        • There's still some major Idiot Ball being tossed around. Bad enough the girls went travelling without an adult chaperon, but put their trust into a total stranger.
      • The mother encouraged her daughter to lie to her father, thus reinforcing an attitude of general disdain for him and his role as a parent. The implication is that had her mother not been on board with the lie and her daughter's trip to Paris she would have heeded his warnings about the dangers and perhaps even allowed him to come along as he suggested. More importantly if his role as the father had been given consideration in the decision then there would have been more of a discussion as opposed to the mother just essentially telling him that his absence forfeited his parental rights.
    • You have to remember the film sets up extreme tropes in order to engage its prime audience - fathers, whether single, married, and separated. The bitchy ex-wife is one of those tropes. The subtext of the film is that the ex-wife is frigging lucky Bryan hasn't decided to get her "focused" with all of her shitty behavior towards him.
  • Mystery Science Theater 3000 all the way, but isn't a tad too convenient that the ex-CIA agent happens to get his daughter (out of the millions of tourists to France) kidnapped, thus proving his otherwise excessively paranoid and over-protective father to be totally justified? I mean, in the extremely likely event of his daughter not being kidnapped, this movie would have been about a jerk-ass, loser father who won't let his daughter go. And then that bitchy ex-wife would be the voice of reason. Is this film basically saying that one should be excessively paranoid about foreigners and over protective of your children?
    • Well, consider also that they were kidnapped because Amanda was a dumbass who gave their address to a total stranger and told him that they were staying by themselves, on the grounds that he was "hot". So the film could also be saying that not giving information to strangers is a good way to not get kidnapped.
    • In short, no, it isn't, and Neeson is tired of people thanking him because of that misinterpretation. Thing is, the risks the girls were taking were violations of common sense. If Bryan had been less controlling, Kim probably would've been more honest with him, and maybe even more cautious.
  • Is it just me or is it unfortunate for them to come up with a "CIA" job description that describes the cooperative work of thousands of counter-terrorism experts? "I was a preventer." sounds a lot like "I was Batman."
    • It sounded to me more as if he was trying to sanitize/sum up his job for his daughter.
    • Maybe he wasn't proud of the things he had to do. Sure, he was "preventing" bad things very happening, but he had to do bad things to prevent them. But when she asked what he did, he answered vaguely.
    • As mentioned, "I prevented bad things from happening" sounds a lot nicer than "I tortured and killed people, most of whom deserved it." Plus, if she has any idea of the detective work and ass-kicking that went into rescuing her, she'd probably consider "I was Batman" to be fairly accurate by the end, anyway.
      • Considering the level of determinator he goes to, "I was Batman" is probably a pretty close description to what he was.
      • It's also very possible that a lot of what Brian did involved still-classified missions. I know two former-military who are legally banned from discussing most of what they did while on active service.
  • There's a very odd bit with language in the film. Presumably when Brian is impersonating a French policeman, the whole conversation is in French. (Even Albanian gangsters might get suspicious if a Paris detective speaks nothing but Irish-accented English.) But . . . he then tricks one of the gangsters into repeating a line from their phone conversation. Why did the Albanian say it in English?
    • He was translating.
    • There's no indication here that there's a Translation Convention at work anywhere else in the film. That conversation takes place in English, which is another Headscratcher entirely (one mentioned above, if I'm not mistaken."
      • You're mistaken. He gives the Albanian guy a card with the phrase written on in and asks him what it means in English.
    • Possibly just your basic Bavarian Fire Drill. Let's be honest, few people in their right mind would barge their way into the base of a heavily armed Albanian drug/sex trafficking ring and start extorting money without a good reason.
  • Why did it not occur to Kim to just lock the bathroom door when she saw her friend being kidnapped in the beginning of the movie, and why didn't the main character think to suggest that? All right, there were big windows in the room and the kidnappers probably could've broken them and climbed in eventually, but it would've slowed them down enough to give her plenty of time to ask her father for the French equivalent of 911 and then call for help. She had a cell phone! And yes, many of the police were supposed to be corrupt, but it isn't like she'd know that.
    • Oddly enough, it turns out teenage girls who are in the middle of an extremely traumatic event they'd never considered or ever prepared for aren't going to be tactical geniuses and think of every possible option that they have. Also, her father couldn't see her. He had no idea what the area around her was like, how is he going to suggest he lock the door or anything like that?
    • Plenty of time? The kidnappers had already committed to a potentially violent kidnapping. The time she would have bought in the bathroom MIGHT be enough time to call the cops (who had probably already been called due to neighbors hearing someone screaming bloody murder), but not enough time for the cops to get there (real criminals, and shop owners, generally have a rough idea of how long it would take for a cop to come to their aide). The bathroom door is an internal door and probably just has one of those click-locks. Kidnapper kicks down door, grabs her anyway. She really bought the same amount of time by hiding (admittedly, she picked a crappy spot): If the kidnappers had time to look for her, they had time to kick down a door (that was suspiciously closed and locked).
    • Okay, this wouldn't necessarily have worked for more than a few minutes (or however long it takes to kick down a door in movie-land), but it just seems very strange that the thought never occurs to either of them. No, he couldn't see where she was, but asking something like "Where are you? Indoors? They're in a different room, right? Can you lock them out of the room you're in?" seems reasonable enough. Then again, the Mystery Science Theater 3000 manta probably applies here. "Can you lock the door?" "Won't work, they'll just kick it down!" "Okay, go hide under something!" would kind of ruin the drama.
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