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The Gratuitous B-Movie Column 11.12.12 Issue #233 Taken 2 (2012)

November 12, 2012 | Posted by Bryan Kristopowitz

The Gratuitous B-Movie Column Issue #233: Taken 2 (2012)

Hello, everyone, and welcome once again to the internets movie review column that, quite possibly, is directly responsible for the re-election of President Barack Obama, The Gratuitous B-Movie Column, and I am your host Bryan Kristopowitz. In this issue, issue number two hundred and thirty-three, I take a look at the hit action sequel Taken 2, starring the great Liam Neeson.

Taken 2 (2012)

Taken 2, directed by Olivier Megaton (of Transporter 3 fame), is the sequel to the mega successful 2009 action flick Taken. Taken stormed the American box office, making both star Neeson a bonafide action movie badass (yes, he had done plenty of action movies up until Taken, and he was Qui-Gon Jinn in The Phantom Menace, but was he an action movie star? Not really) and January a viable month for wide release movies. You just knew, based on how much money the movie made at the box office (a little over $225 million worldwide, plus however much it made on home video and TV), that there would eventually be a sequel. So here it is, three years later, and Taken 2 is a big hit, still making money at the box office a month after its release. But is it any good? Is it worth checking out?

Yes. Taken 2 isn’t as generally vicious and as high stakes as the first movie, but it’s a well made action movie with a star and main character that the general movie going public likes. Sometimes that’s all you really need to have a successful movie.

Taken 2 takes place a few months/maybe a year after the events of the first movie. Neeson’s ex-CIA badass Bryan Mills is still living in Los Angeles, not that far away from his daughter Kim (Maggie Grace) and ex-wife Lenore (Famke Janssen). Life is generally okay for Mills. When he isn’t working a freelance security job he’s a doting father, teaching Kim how to drive (he shows up every day at 2pm exactly). He still has feelings for Lenore, and things are sort of looking up in that department as she’s having problems with her well heeled new husband (played by Xander Berekley in the first movie, but he doesn’t show his face in the sequel). Mills is a little annoyed, though, with Kim having a boyfriend he doesn’t know about. After Stuart cancels a big trip to China, pissing Lenore off big time, Mills invites Lenore and Kim to Turkey, as Mills has a quick security job to complete in Istanbul. If Lenore agrees to go, great. If not, well, at least he has the driving lessons and the awkward conversations in the vestibule of Lenore’s house.

So Lenore and Kim go to Turkey, surprising Mills on the last day of his security job. Mills is immediately excited as he’ll be able to spend quality time with his ex-wife and daughter. Little does Mills know, though, that the family of the men he killed in the first movie want to kill him and his family, and they’ve entered Turkey to find him. They know Mills is there.

So the hooey hits the fan pretty quickly, with the bad guys fanning out and looking for Mills and his family. They eventually find their prey and try to exact their revenge. As you’d expect, Mills refuses to go down without a fight. He eventually gets captured along with Lenore, and Kim is forced to sort of fend for herself. Will the bad guys win, or will Bryan Mills figure out a way to kill even more people enroute to protecting his family?

The story, credited to Robert Mark Kamen and producer Luc Besson, is probably a little too complicated for its own good. There are two segments of the movie where Kim is forced to act as the story’s hero, and while they’re entertaining they’re not as exciting as watching Neeson beat the crap out of people. Grace does a good job playing a kind of fish out of water action star, but her presence in this section of the movie just seems to exist for the sake of making this movie different from the first one. The driving through the narrow streets of Istanbul, while ridiculous, is pretty dang cool, though.

The movie is also lacking a sense of dread that the first one possessed and used to amp up the suspense. There is a grand sense of triumph at the end when Mills finally gets to take out all of the bad guys, but it isn’t as triumphant as it could be. Maybe Kim shouldn’t have been in the movie at all, and the story should have been all about Mills and Lenore trying to reconnect smack dab in the middle of the bad guys and their vengeance quest. That way there’s one less main character to worry about and Bryan Mills can kick ass without having to worry about where Kim is.

Neeson is outstanding as Mills. He’s a consummate professional through and through, and he’s clearly someone you don’t want to mess with. His hand-to-hand scenes are pretty dang brutal looking (the first fight is the best in the movie). I do wish, though, he would let someone else wax his car. I know he likes doing it himself but, good God, man, get a hobby.

Famke Janssen doesn’t get to do much beyond cry and wonder what the heck is going as Mills’ ex-wife Lenore, but she’s fun to look at and that’s just enough. Perhaps she’ll get more to do in the eventual part three? She was a Bond girl, so it’s not like she’s an action movie novice. She knows how to kick ass. Luke Grimes, who plays Jamie, Kim’s boyfriend, is a bit of a douchebag, but he isn’t in the movie long enough to make you want to see Mills take him out. You wouldn’t mind seeing Mills make him pee his pants in fear, though.

In terms of the bad guys, the guy that stands out the most is Rade Sherbedgia, who plays the leader of the vengeance seekers Murad Krasniqi. He’s the father of the guy Mills electrocuted in the first movie, and he’s hell bent on seeking revenge. He’s a bastard, yes, but he’s not as sadistic and nasty as he should be. I mean, here’s a guy willing to kill an entire family because the father of that family killed his son, a son who engaged in human trafficking. How does a man reconcile that fact in his mind when going after a man who sought his own revenge? The movie gets into this aspect of Murad’s motivation a little, but not enough for it to make sense.

Mills’ old CIA buddies Sam (Leland Orser), Casey (John Gries), and Bernie (D.B. Sweeney) don’t get much to do, either. They’re in two scenes, and all they really do is eat steak and play golf. I’m going to assume that they’ll have more to do in a third movie. I mean, why not have Mills lead a team of security specialists enlisted by the government (or some private corporation) to track down and find a kidnapped executive or some such? Wouldn’t that make for a great Taken story? Someone gets taken, and Mills has to find them. It won’t have the “they’ve got my family” aspect to work with, but what’s wrong with seeing Mills as a dispassionate yet passionate professional looking for someone? I think people will show up for that.

Taken 2. It’s not as good as the first Taken, but it’s definitely worth checking out anyway. Bryan Mills is a cool character, and I look forward to seeing him on the big screen again, kicking ass and taking names. Liam Neeson rocks.

See Taken 2 as soon as you can. See it, see it, see it.

So what do we have here?

Dead bodies: 10+

Explosions: A few. Grenades on rooftops and in parking lots? Does this kind of thing happen often in Istanbul?

Nudity?: None. It’s PG-13.

Doobage: A hip and edgy Albanian funeral, a cemetery on a hill, dirt throwing, flashbacks to Taken, car washing, car waxing, driving practice, parallel parking practice, torture, scissors to the leg, a backyard barbecue, executive protection, a mini personal arsenal, sightseeing, fireworks, morning prayers, fear, guy on a moped, fruit stand smashing, box throwing, fucking around with an I-Pad, crow bar attack, ass kicking, hotel security, ledge walking, nice thighs, dead guys in an elevator, a boot cell phone, drawing circles on a map, exploding car, clothes stealing, picture showing, neck cutting, chain bondage, an exploding water thing, Albanians eating what appears to be Chinese food, a clothesline, taxi stealing, car combat on narrow streets, a wild flip, outrunning a train, a train collision with explosion, embassy crashing, a set of torture tools, neck snap with a chain, machine gun to the gut, wall shooting, a stand off, attempted stabbing, death by edge of the stone floor, an incredibly stupid move, and ice cream sundaes.

Kim Richards?: Not really.

Gratuitous:A hip and edgy Albanian funeral on a hill, dirt throwing, Liam Neeson, Liam Neeson waxing his own car, punctuality, Liam Neeson pissed off, Famke Janssen, Maggie Grace, driving practice, torture, Leland Orser, D.B. Sweeney, Turkey, attempted family vacation, guy on a moped, fruit stand smashing, box throwing, grenade throwing in public, picture showing, neck cutting, chain bondage, Albanians eating what appears to be Chinese food, TV soccer, a Mercedes taxi, car combat, neck snap with a chain, a stand off, death by edge of the stone floor, and ice cream sundaes.

Best lines: “We will not rest until his blood flows into this very ground,” “She has a boyfriend?,” “Have you ever tried to parallel park an Escalade?,” “Remember to brake before you stop,” “Can we talk about baseball for God’s sake?,” “Welcome to Istanbul,” “Hey, Kim! I know what you’re doing!,” “Driver. Turn left,” “I need you to be ready,” “I’ll blow his brains out,” “Listen carefully. Your mother and I are about to be taken,” “I shot some guy,” “If you can, take the case with you,” “I killed your son because he kidnapped my daughter! I don’t care what he did!,” “Don’t play the hero with me,” “Set off another grenade,” “Do you know how to shoot? No. Then drive,” “Come on, Kim! Move!,” “It’s Bry. He’s in trouble in Istanbul,” and “We’re all safe.”

Rating: 7.5/10.0

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The Gratuitous B-Movie Column: The Facebook Page!

Please check out The Gratuitous B-Movie Column Facebook page, which can be seen here. There’s not much there at the moment, but, as time goes by, expect to see daily questions and musings and other B-movie hooey. And it would be cool if you “liked” it, too.

The Gratuitous B-Movie Column Facebook page! Yeah!

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Things to Watch Out For This Week: Part 1

- The Definitive Document of the Dead: Document of the Dead, directed by Roy Frumkes, is probably the most famous documentary about a horror movie, at least in the horror movie nerd world. I know I flipped out when I saw it on IFC several years ago. I never thought I would. If you’re a horror movie nerd and you haven’t seen Document of the Dead, good God you need to buy this DVD. This edition is supposedly, well, definitive. Heck, even if you have the old edition of this documentary (I have it as part of that badass Anchor Bay DVD set of Dawn of the Dead) you should get this DVD. It’ll be worth it.

- Brave: I saw this in theatres, in 3D, this past summer, and it was okay. It was great to look at, and the movie has its moments (the three little kids are hysterical), but it’s not as exciting as it perhaps should be. It’s still worth watching, though. It’s a Pixar movie.

- Savages: I missed this action drama when it was in theatres, but the trailers looked great, and the idea of Oliver Stone doing an action movie is just… cool. I mean, when was the last time Stone actually did that? Natural Born Killers?

- The Watch: I saw this when it came out, and for the most part I liked it. The special effects are top notch, the cast is funny (Jonah Hill was great), but the story and tone were both kind of lame and all over the place. I didn’t like the whole “alien killing people” thing. It probably would have been funnier if the alien simply cocooned people or something like that. Am I the only one who though this?

- Bigfoot: The Lost Coast Tapes: Yet another pseudo documentary type horror flick. I’m not usually a fan of this kind of horror movie, but the trailer makes me want to at least give it a rental. Although, is it me, or does The Lost Coast Tapes make this movie sound like a sequel?

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TV Quick Hits

- Hunted thoughts: After the first two episodes of this new Cinemax show I haven’t exactly given up on it, but I’m not as interested as I was when I first heard about it. It’s awfully complicated, and I just don’t have the patience at the moment to give a crap about anything that’s going on. In fact, as soon as the show started I was lost. I had no idea what was happening, and I’m still not all that sure about what the heck is allegedly going on.

Melissa George is kind of interesting as the show’s lead character, but I haven’t connected with what her Sam Hunter is trying to find out. The show just comes off as too low key for its own good. I don’t think the show needs to go all Strike Back on us and become a balls to the wall action fest each and every week, but at the same time, if the show were a little more amped up I might want to keep watching it. I’ll probably watch all eight episodes eventually, but not right now.

Am I giving up on this show too quickly? Am I missing something? Do I not fully understand the greatness of Frank Spotnitz’s idea?

- Is Bobby hiding something on Sons of Anarchy?: Mark Boone Junior’s Bobby Munson, the new VP of SAMCRO, looked awfully worried talking to Jax last week about a possible snitch in the gang, didn’t he? I know that the conversation they had was all about Juicy and what he did last season, and I’m sure there was something unsaid in there about Juicy’s ongoing close relationship with Clay, but when Bobby gave Jax his advice, didn’t he seem awfully worried? Didn’t it seem like, at least for a moment, that Bobby thought Jax thought he was a snitch and Bobby was about to flip out?

I mean, it’s plausible, isn’t it? Bobby hasn’t been the same completely gung ho gang member since the gang started running drugs. He tried to get Clay removed from the gang presidency because of the drug stuff. Isn’t it possible that the feds got to him the last time he was in prison? Isn’t it possible that Bobby wants to bring down the thing he used to believe in because, well, he just doesn’t believe in it anymore?

And how long do you think it will take for Tara to completely abandon her plans to get her family out of the gang and become consumed with all of the day in day out bullshit that comes with running a successful criminal enterprise? She’s starting to look more and more like Gemma with each episode, and I have a feeling that the recent masturbation meeting with Otto in prison is going to somehow change her opinion of the gang and make her think these people are okay. Jax may say he wants out, but he’s having way too much fun killing people this season. He’ll love it when his wife comes around to liking it as much as he does. I think the Jimmy Smits Nero character needs to have another flip out conversation with Jax on the “virtues” of gang life when it comes to your family. There’s no real future in it. Listen to the man, man. Don’t let your wife become your mother, and don’t let yourself become Clay.

- 2012 U.S. Presidential Election Night Coverage thoughts: I started watching election coverage at 6:30pm est with the ABC World News, and that’s where I stayed, pretty much, for the entire night. I didn’t flip around like I did back in 2008. I did manage to catch some of MSNBC’s coverage and looked to see who was on CNN. I stayed away from Fox News for just about the entire night. I did flip over right after President Obama’s victory speech to see what the ultra right wingers were saying. It wasn’t as interesting as I thought it was going to be. The Pat Caddell lead 2:30am group debate show was kind of fun, especially when he refused to let anyone else speak.

The big question concerning ABC’s election coverage was whether or not anchor Diane Sawyer was “under the influence.” I’ll admit that she didn’t seem like her usual ABC World News serious self, but I seriously doubt that she was drunk or high or anything like that. She was simply in “celebrity interview” mode. The one person on the ABC panel I was most concerned about was Cokie Roberts. I swear it looked like she aged about ten years over the course of the night. She actually looked older than Barbara Walters and Barbara Walters is essentially a zombie right now.

Katie Couric’s “social media” thing was kind of lame. I know that Couric is supposed to be warmer and less serious now that she’s a daytime TV talk show host but she could have been put on the panel along with Walters and Mathew Dowd and Nicolle Wallace and Donna Brazile. I’m sure ABC News has some hip and edgy youngish person to do that kind of thing instead.

The interviews of voters on the street thing on ABC wasn’t as interesting as it could have been. It seemed like every time a “regular person” was answering a question the show had to go back to the studio because the network was ready to call another state. Maybe ABC News should have done the bulk of that earlier in the night, or at least before 8pm, when a huge chunk of states ended voting.

I watched quite a bit of BBC America’s election coverage back in 2008, but I didn’t flip over there to see if the channel had coverage again as my cable box schedule showed a full night of some bullshit reality show. I loved the BBC America coverage. It was thorough, not as heated, and it was cool to listen to a guy with a thickish British accent explain, in detail, how the electoral college works.

So now it’s on to 2014 and the “off year” congressional elections. Will the Republicans increase their numbers in the House, or will the Democrats find a way to beat them? Will the Senate be in play for a party switch? And, by then, who will look more and more like a plausible Presidential candidate? With both sides having to field candidates it should be quite the election run up.

I know I may be in the minority here but I kind of miss the endless campaign commercials. How else am I going to know who loves America and who wants to sell the country out to the homosexuals and the Chinese? How?

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The Gratuitous B-Movie Column B-Movie Theme of the Week

Enjoy.

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And now, the weekly Fearnet update

Fearnet, the only free all horror/thriller On Demand TV network features uncut, uncensored horror flicks from the past and present 24 hours a day, seven days a week, pretty much any time you freaking want them (as long as you still have power, that is). The channel also has behind-the-scenes stuff, trailers, and other cool hooey for you to check out. Check your local cable listings for availability (According to the Fearnetwebsite more and more Time Warner and Cox Cable areas are getting the channel. Be sure to go here to see if Fearnet is coming to your area). At the moment, Hatchet, Laid to Rest, and two John Carpenter classics, Vampires and Ghosts of Mars are on Fearnet OnDemand. How awesome is that?

Fearnet also exists as a regular old TV channel. This Fearnet airs horror movies roughly twenty one hours a day (there is a block of infomercials in the morning, usually from 6-9am est). The movies shown do have “commercial breaks” in them, similar to the breaks that currently appear on IFC, but the movies are uncut (blood and boobs and cursing are all intact).

Fearnet’s website, fearnet.com, offers free movies, interviews, news, and other behind-the-scenes horror movie nerd stuff, too. Wishmaster and Wishmaster 2 were on the site last week. Are they still there? Check and see).

The website also features Post Mortem with Mick Garris, a nifty interview show where big, fat Stephen King’s favorite director talks with genre legends like John Carpenter, Wes Craven, Roger Corman, and others. It’s definitely worth your time.

If you’re a Facebook nerd (and, really, today, who isn’t?) you can check out the Fearnet fans Facebook page, which can be seen here. There are plenty of people out there interested in Fearnet. Join them. And, as always, thanks to both Mark Lindsey and Mathew Hirsch for info regarding the Fearnet fan movement.

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The Gratuitous B-Movie Column B-Movie Babe of the Week: Famke Janssen

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Things to Watch Out For This Week: Part 2

- Snowmageddon: A low budget sci-fi fantasy movie about a magical snow globe that, when shaken, can cause a massive blizzard? Is that what this PG-13 disaster movie is really all about? A magical snow globe? Is this the first movie to do that?

- Dust Up: Holy hooey does this movie look great. A one eyed former vigilante that has to help a woman fight off a cannibalistic drug lord? Why didn’t this movie have a wide theatrical release? I would have been there opening day to see it. Can’t wait to see it.

- Screwed: This is a British prison movie based on a book by a guy who worked in a British prison. Or something like that. I’m a little weary of the flick’s running time (110 minutes), but James D’Arcy is in it, and that’s reason enough to at least give the movie a rental.

- Asylum: Also apparently known as I Want to be a Gangster, I don’t know much about this movie beyond the description for it on imdb.com and amazon. I like the DVD cover. And this movie is also French. When was the last time you saw a low budget French genre movie? I can’t remember the last time I saw one. And where the heck is the trailer for it? Where?

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The Gratuitous B-Movie Column Douchebag of the Week


This week, The Gratuitous B-Movie Column Douchebag of the Week goes to Rabbi Noson Leiter, for claiming that Hurricane Sandy was divine retribution for New York allowing gay marriage. You knew that, eventually, some ultra right wing religious psychopath would say that the hurricane was all about gay people, but I don’t think anyone thought it would be a rabbi. I know I didn’t. I figured someone like a Pat Robertson or Randall Terry would have beaten Leiter to the punch. But Leiter came out first and came out in a big way. Andrew Cuomo, the governor of New York, said Leiter was ignorant and a fool, and that’s pretty much how I feel, too. Divine retribution? Why didn’t God take out New York last year when gay marriage became the law of the state? Why did God wait a year?

It’s all bullshit, folks. Total bullshit.

And then there’s Chris “Tweety” Mathews, host of MSNBC’s Hardball, for saying on election night that he was glad that Hurricane Sandy happened. Mathews later apologized for what he said. It was at the end of a long night, he was tired, and he was trying to make a larger point about how he was happy that America got to see bipartisanship in action. That’s all probably true, but, in the end, it doesn’t matter what he was trying to say. He said he was glad that Hurricane Sandy happened. That’s fucking messed up.

Now, should he be fired? No. Suspended? Maybe for a few days. But if the cable news channels fired on-air personalities and show hosts for outrageous and despicable commentary Fox News would have to have a new roster of show hosts every couple of hours.

Don’t do it again, Chris. Just don’t.

And then there’s both Ted Nugent and Donald Trump, for completely flipping out via Twitter over the reelection of President Obama. Nugent claimed that only pimps and whores and welfare queens voted for the President and the election was a disgrace, while Trump claimed that the election was a sham and that we “needed a revolution.” I don’t think there’s any question now that the Nuge is a fucking racist piece of shit and Trump is a clueless buffoon. Anyone want to defend these guys now beyond saying that they’re Americans and they have a right to their opinion? Anyone?

Yeah, that’s what I thought. So how do you think it will take for Nugent to end up in prison because of this election? A year? A few months? A few weeks?

And finally there’s good old “turd blossom” hisself Karl Rove, for refusing to accept that President Obama won the election last Tuesday night. Rove got pissed about Fox News, his employer, calling Ohio for Obama because, well, there were still so many votes to count. Then, after it was obvious to everyone but him that the election was over, he complained even more about how the vote was suppressed by the President’s team and that Governor Romney was demonized to the point that no one liked him.

Um, isn’t that what you normally do in an election? Didn’t you, Karl, manage to convince people that a real war hero, John Kerry, wasn’t a war hero and instead was a giant pussy? What the hell are you complaining about, Karl? Are you afraid that no one will listen to you now that you’ve been found out to be a bit of a fraud? You think Fox News is going to fire you? Please. After Dick Morris claimed that it was a lock that the 2008 Presidential election would be Hillary Clinton vs. Rudy Giuliani he didn’t get fired. He was still around in 2012 being completely wrong about that election, too. You have a bright future, Karl. Don’t worry about it.

Ha.

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NASCAR and Indycar thoughts

Well, that was pretty dang wild, wasn’t it? Who the heck would have thought going into the ninth race of the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Chase for the Championship at Phoenix International Raceway that we wouldn’t be talking about the Chase contenders at the end of the race? I figured that the talk after the race would be all about the two man battle for the title between Jimmie Johnson and Brad Keselowski going into the finale at Homestead, and after Johnson wrecked with 77 laps to go how Johnson essentially gave up a sixth title. But then the wreck between Jeff Gordon and Clint Bowyer and the ensuing brawl in the pits changed all of that.

According to what the announcers on ESPN said, Gordon took out Bowyer deliberately because Gordon had had enough of Bowyer’s rough driving around him (something happened at Martinsville earlier in the year, and Gordon’s crew chief claimed that Bowyer slammed into Gordon five times over the season). Denny Hamlin apparently said after the race that what Gordon did warrants a one race suspension, and Bowyer, while he didn’t come right out say “I agree” probably wouldn’t shed a tear if the four time champion missed the season finale at Homestead.

So should Gordon be suspended? Not really. This kind of on track rivalry, and the further threat of retaliation is what draws interest to NASCAR and makes the major sports news media and casual fan take notice. It’s too bad that ESPN didn’t have more cameras inside the pit crew brawl in the pits as I bet that would have been all over every sports cast and on the front page of every sports page the next day. Now, had Gordon slammed into Bowyer under caution, similar to what Kyle Busch did to Ron Hornaday in the Trucks Series not that long ago, that would be a different story. You don’t do that. But a nudge and a deliberate wreck in the middle of a race, that’s fine. It’s childish and immature, sure, but that kind of thing happens sometimes in racing.

I would like to know why NASCAR didn’t throw the caution flag at the end. Danica Patrick’s damaged car was on the inside all on the front stretch, leaking fluids, and yet NASCAR let the drivers race to the finish. NASCAR did say that it didn’t see any fluid on the track, but come on. Patrick’s damaged car, while out of the racing line, was still on the track, on the front stretch, close to the start finish line. The white flag had already been thrown, the race was over (the “green-white-checkered” rule only applies if the cars don’t take the white flag before the caution comes out). Did eventual race winner Kevin Harvick’s car owner Richard Childress throw a hissy fit on the radio or something?

What the heck happened to Kyle Busch’s luck? He once again had the dominant car of the race and he led the most laps and yet he couldn’t close the deal at the end. He did finish third, yes, but after leading the most laps and destroying the field? That’s got to be a bit of a downer. And Danica? Good God, that poor woman can’t catch a break. Jeff Burton wrecks her with two laps to go, and then two cars slam into her at the end, almost causing her to flip on the front stretch? What the hell?

So now it all comes down to Homestead. Will points leader Brad Keselowski be able to hold off Jimmie Johnson and finish 15th or higher to clinch his, and car owner Roger Penske’s, first Sprint Cup championship, or will Johnson pull a sixth title out of his ass somehow? Will the Clint Bowyer- Jeff Gordon thing explode again on the track? And how hard will the non-championship contenders push to win the race, the last race of the 2012 season?

I didn’t get a chance to watch either the Camping World Trucks Series race on Friday or the Nationwide race on Saturday. Brian Scott won the Trucks race, and Joey Logano picked up his ninth Nationwide win of the year. It looks like Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. is going to repeat as champion, as second place Elliott Sadler doesn’t appear to have the same luck he had earlier in the year. Sadler is down twenty points going into Homestead, and he’s basically going to have to win the race in order to win the title. I just don’t see that happening. I have no idea who is going to win the Trucks Series title. It’s a three man battle with James Buescher, Timothy Peters, and Ty Dillon all within twelve points of one another. Friday night’s race should be a real barn burner.

So Kevin Harvick will be racing for Tony Stewart in 2014? It’s pretty obvious that Harvick is leaving because Childress wants the car for one of his grandsons, but why get rid of him and keep Jeff Burton around? How does that make sense? And where the heck is Harvick, or Stewart, getting the money for a fourth car?

Homestead is next, the last race of the season. Trucks on Friday night, Nationwide on Saturday, and Sprint Cup on Sunday afternoon.

Over in Indycar, the big news at the moment is Sebastien Bourdais has re-signed with Dragon Racing for a full season in 2013. I’m going to assume that “full season” means he’ll be racing on the ovals, too. I don’t know what this means for Dragon’s other driver, Katherine Legge. I’m assuming she’ll be back, too, and that Dragon will be running two cars full time with Chevy engines. The Lotus engine issue is what allegedly kept Dragon to one car for most of 2012, with Bourdais and Legge splitting the season when the team could only get one Chevy engine after dropping out of the Lotus program. If that is what happens in 2013, I wonder how long it will take for Bourdais to complain about how “unsafe” oval racing is. How the heck is he going to handle Pocono?

The other sort of big story is Speed’s Robin Miller outing the big fish behind the firing of Randy Bernard. You can go here to read the whole sordid story. All I’ll say is Chip Ganassi is a piece of shit, and he should be ashamed of himself.

I’m going to assume that we’ll know more about who will be where for 2013 in the coming weeks. There are still several drivers technically without official rides at the moment. Speed’s Marshall Pruett will allegedly have all of the details in the next few weeks.

And finally, Yahoo is reporting that Danica Patrick will not be attempting the Indy500/Coke 600 double in 2013. It’s a shame because it would have been cool to see her try, but it’s probably best for her, at the moment, to concentrate on NASCAR. And, really, what team would she have driven for in Indycar? Andretti? Penske? Those are the only two real Chevy powerhouse teams at the moment.

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Well, I think that’ll be about it for this issue. B-movies rule, always remember that.

If there’s anything you want to see reviewed here in this column, feel free to offer a comment below or send me an e-mail. I’m always on the lookout for new stuff to watch.

And don’t forget to sign up with disqus if you want to comment on this article and any other 411 article. You know you want to, so just go do it.

Taken 2

Liam Neeson- Bryan Mills
Maggie Grace- Kim
Famke Janssen- Lenore
Rade Sherbedgia- Murad Krasniqi
Leland Orser- Sam
Jon Gries- Casey
D.B. Sweeney- Bernie
Luke Grimes- Jamie

Directed by Olivier Megaton
Screenplay by Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen

Distributed by Twentieth Century Fox

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, and some sensuality
Runtime- 92 minutes

Website: http://www.takenmovie.com/

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Bryan Kristopowitz

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