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Taken 2 [Blu-ray]
(Olivier Megaton, 2012)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: 20th Century Fox
Video:20th Century Fox
Region: 'A' (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)
Theatrical Runtime: 1:32:07.897
Unrated Runtime: 1:38:18.685
Disc Size: 45,925,308,575 bytes
Theatrical Feature Size: 23,916,791,808 bytes
Unrated Feature Size: 25,520,265,216 bytes
Video Bitrate: 25.89 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: January 15th, 2013
Aspect ratio: 2.35:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 3899 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 3899 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
* Dolby Digital Audio English 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
* Dolby Digital Audio Chinese 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
* Dolby Digital Audio French 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
* Dolby Digital Audio Spanish 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
English (SDH), English, Chinese, Spanish, none
Black Ops Field Manual and Kill Counter
(unrated version only) - runs with the film offering pop-ups
DVD and Digital Copy
Description: Liam Neeson returns as Bryan Mills, the ex-CIA operative who stopped at nothing to rescue his daughter from sadistic kidnappers. When the father of one of the kidnappers swears revenge, it is Bryan and his wife who find themselves "taken" hostage in Istanbul. To survive, Bryan must enlist the help of an unlikely ally and use his brutally efficient skills to take out his heavily-armed foes one by one.
He hunted them, he found them, he killed them; now they have
come back to settle the score. Twentieth Century Fox Home
Entertainment presents the return of former CIA operative
Bryan Mills and his “particular set of skills” when TAKEN
2 arrives on Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD January 15. The
sequel to the 2008 box office smash
Taken, this action-packed follow-up has
brought in $135 million theatrically in the U.S. alone.
His family targeted by a vengeful crime boss in Istanbul, retired CIA agent Bryan Mills (Liam Neeson) must fight an army of killers to ensure their safe return in this action sequel from director Olivier Megaton (Transporter 3) and producer/co-writer Luc Besson (who penned the screenplay alongside Taken scribe Robert Mark Kamen)
The original "Taken"
may have earned an impressive $224 million-plus in worldwide box office
receipts, but it apparently went unseen in one remote corner of Albania.
That would be the home base of a group of men who, not knowing any
better, feel compelled to menace Bryan Mills and his family one more
time in "Taken 2." Talk about slow learners.
Taken 2, sequel to the 2008 sleeper hit, doesn't worry too much
about improbability in devising a way to bring Bryan Mills (Neeson) back
into the action. In the first film, Mills punched and shot his way
through Paris in order to retrieve his kidnapped daughter Kim (Maggie
Grace). The followup jumps ahead two years, Kim still on edge from the
experience and Mills just hoping to move past it all. To wash away bad
memories, Kim and Mill's ex-wife Lenore (Famke Janssen) join the
badass-for-hire on a work trip to Istanbul where everyone can finally
relax. That is, until someone gets taken.
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
Taken 2 on 20th Century Fox Blu-ray offers both the Theatrical and 'Unrated' versions in 1080P - seamlessly branched. The image is quite rich and thick with a heavy teal leaning. Detail is quite strong with a decent bitrate but the camera is very kinetic with many fast-cuts in the many action sequences including two car-chase scenes. Contrast exhibits healthy, deep black levels. Daylight scenes are bright and usually more cheery with most of the intensity occurring in the dark shadows of Istanbul. This Blu-ray gives a solid presentation although the heavy teal could be bothersome to certain viewers. The action is so rife I found it rarely noticeable. Most will be suitably impressed.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
Audio is via a tension-filled DTS-HD Master 5.1 at a resounding 3899 kbps. Nathaniel Méchaly did the score - as he did for the original. It's punchy and powerful with enough subtleties to gauge it as remarkable. There are plenty of separations and depth. It certainly adds to the presentation value. There are optional subtitles and DUBs and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked although other versions are available in Europe and Asia.
Supplements include a 'Black Ops Field Manual and Kill Counter' that runs along the entire the (Unrated version only) film offering pop-up information. 'Tools of the Trade' is an interactive briefcase toolkit that details the weapons at Bryan's disposal - kind of like a Bond-thing although more practical and less flamboyant. There are 5 Deleted and Extended Scenes running 7 minutes. More impressive is the 25-minute 'Alternative Ending' with the following description from the director:
There is also a 5-minute FX Piece with Liam Neeson and his concerns over getting the sequel done correctly and the package has a DVD of the feature with access to a Digital Copy for your portal device.
January 7th, 2013
About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 5000 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.
Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who
focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I
find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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