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Movie Choices for Kids - Taken 2, Alex Cross

October 22, 2012 6:35 pm
Written by: Jean Joachim

TAKEN 2 (Approx. running time: approx. 90 minutes)
Rated PG-13 Starring Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace, Famke Janssen, Luke Grimes

We have two very scary movies this week. I wonder why frightening, violent movies about assassination and revenge are PG-13, but a movie that shows one bare breast is rated "R"? I think the former is far more harmful. But personal opinions aside, this week, both movies are excellent but scary and very violent.

Taken 2 is about the same family. Bryan (Neeson), ex-government agent turned security expert, is still overprotective. But now Lenore (Janssen) has split with her husband. So Bryan, Lenore and their 16-year-old daughter, Kim (Grace), take a vacation together in Istanbul. The families of the men Bryan killed rescuing his daughter are out for revenge. The patriarch of the family has another kidnapping planned. But he plans to nab Bryan, Lenore and Kim this time.

It doesn't take long for Bryan to catch on and the chase scenes, escapes and captures are so fast and ingeniously executed they leave you breathless. But Bryan and Lenore do get caught while Kim manages to elude the captors. One scene that was so scary happens when they have Lenore in chains, cut her neck and hang her upside down in front of Bryan. He will watch her bleed to death in front of his eyes. I thought this was gruesome, too gruesome for kids.

The plot is clever. Bryan is almost a superman, the way he figures distance by sound and manages to get out of chains. This is a fast, exciting, violent movie. There is no bad language or sex. The concept of being snatched while vacationing in a foreign country is jarring at the least. Taken 2 is best for older kids, 13 or 14 and up and not for sensitive children at all.

ALEX CROSS (Approximate running time: 101 minutes)
Rated PG-13   Starring Tyler Perry, Edward Burns, Jean Reno, Cicely Tyson

Alex Cross is the main character from a James Patterson series of books. Alex (Perry) is hot on the trail of a serial killer (Fox) with his police partner (Burns). When they manage to thwart the killer at his next attempt, Alex and his family become the next target.

After the killer strikes close to home for both men, the fight gets personal. Alex finds himself pushed to his moral limit as he pursues this monster. This is an exciting thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat. I'm not even sure I was breathing for half the movie. The action is heart-stopping and the emotions raw.

I have enjoyed Mr. Patterson's books and I'm sure there will be more movies of his Alex Cross series. The serial killer is heartless. He cuts off a victim's fingers for no reason. And he drugged her so she was cognizant but couldn't move. That kind of sociopathic cruelty made me queasy. I doubt this is a good film for children. There's no bad language, one short sex scene that is not explicit, but the violence is frightening and sick. Alex Cross is best for kids 15 and up and not for sensitive children. But don't miss this one, it's superb.



TAKEN 2 (Approx. running time: approx. 90 minutes)
Rated PG-13 Starring Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace, Famke Janssen, Luke Grimes

We have two very scary movies this week. I wonder why frightening, violent movies about assassination and revenge are PG-13, but a movie that shows one bare breast is rated "R"? I think the former is far more harmful. But personal opinions aside, this week, both movies are excellent but scary and very violent.

Taken 2 is about the same family. Bryan (Neeson), ex-government agent turned security expert, is still overprotective. But now Lenore (Janssen) has split with her husband. So Bryan, Lenore and their 16-year-old daughter, Kim (Grace), take a vacation together in Istanbul. The families of the men Bryan killed rescuing his daughter are out for revenge. The patriarch of the family has another kidnapping planned. But he plans to nab Bryan, Lenore and Kim this time.

It doesn't take long for Bryan to catch on and the chase scenes, escapes and captures are so fast and ingeniously executed they leave you breathless. But Bryan and Lenore do get caught while Kim manages to elude the captors. One scene that was so scary happens when they have Lenore in chains, cut her neck and hang her upside down in front of Bryan. He will watch her bleed to death in front of his eyes. I thought this was gruesome, too gruesome for kids.

The plot is clever. Bryan is almost a superman, the way he figures distance by sound and manages to get out of chains. This is a fast, exciting, violent movie. There is no bad language or sex. The concept of being snatched while vacationing in a foreign country is jarring at the least. Taken 2 is best for older kids, 13 or 14 and up and not for sensitive children at all.

ALEX CROSS (Approximate running time: 101 minutes)
Rated PG-13   Starring Tyler Perry, Edward Burns, Jean Reno, Cicely Tyson

Alex Cross is the main character from a James Patterson series of books. Alex (Perry) is hot on the trail of a serial killer (Fox) with his police partner (Burns). When they manage to thwart the killer at his next attempt, Alex and his family become the next target.

After the killer strikes close to home for both men, the fight gets personal. Alex finds himself pushed to his moral limit as he pursues this monster. This is an exciting thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat. I'm not even sure I was breathing for half the movie. The action is heart-stopping and the emotions raw.

I have enjoyed Mr. Patterson's books and I'm sure there will be more movies of his Alex Cross series. The serial killer is heartless. He cuts off a victim's fingers for no reason. And he drugged her so she was cognizant but couldn't move. That kind of sociopathic cruelty made me queasy. I doubt this is a good film for children. There's no bad language, one short sex scene that is not explicit, but the violence is frightening and sick. Alex Cross is best for kids 15 and up and not for sensitive children. But don't miss this one, it's superb.


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