There’s a new crime fighting team in town tonight!
Tonight’s episode of NBC’s The Blacklist – The Apothecary #59 – leads into the premiere of The Blacklist: Redemption – Leland Bray.
Where The Blacklist follows an FBI team acting on intel from world-class criminal Raymond Reddington, The Blacklist: Redemption follows a team of former criminals seeking redemption by tackling cases in which even governments might be unwilling to meddle.
The evening’s fun begins with The Blacklist at 9/8C and continues with The Blacklist: Redemption at 10/9C. Sneak peek videos follow…
Things go from from worse to even even worse in season two of Netflix’s supernatural series, Hemlock Grove, as the town continues to come to grips with the aftermath of the massacre caused by one of their own.
Check out the awesome new key art following the jump! Hemlock Grove returns July 11th.
A retired spy’s daughter is kidnapped to be sold as a sex slave [the slightly skeevey part]. The ex-spy hunts the men who kidnapped her. As premises go, this one is simple, direct and a bit odd to find in a PG-13 film – but we are talking about a Luc Besson production, so maybe it’s not really a surprise.
What is a surprise is that Taken, co-written by Besson [Leon, The Professional and The Fifth Element] and Robert Mark Kamen [The Karate Kid, The Transporter], and directed by Pierre Morel [District B13], is better than the premise suggests. This mostly because it takes a bit of time to establish that our protagonist, Bryan Mills [Liam Neeson] has retired because he wants to reconnect with his daughter, Kim [Maggie Grace]. We believe him because we see how disappointed he is when her mother, Lenore [Famke Janssen] and step-father, Stuart [Xander Berkley] upstage him at her birthday party [he brings her an expensive karaoke machine, but Stuart gives her a horse].
When she and her mother persuade him to sign a waiver allowing Kim to go to Paris, his warnings of danger fall on deaf ears and – sure enough – she and her friend are kidnapped. Then comes the phone conversation we saw in the trailer – followed by Mills taking action. Although Neeson is not a small guy, he does a good job of making himself seem ordinary as he begins tracking down the kidnappers, but once he swings into action, he becomes a force of nature.
Morel keeps the action up front and his pacing builds as Mills works himself up the chain of command – starting with the spotter who set up Kim and her friend. The usual ingredients of a Besson production are here – fights, chases, explosions – but because we buy into Mills as a father, there is a little more gravity, a little more at stake than usual.
Taken is entertaining but, ultimately, reliant on one performance. If you buy Neeson as Mills, then you’ll enjoy the movie. If not, you won’t. I did.