On first impression, one imagines that two steps went into conceiving Stolen, a lively but utterly scatterbrained action film that has Nicolas Cage playing a man trying to track down his kidnapped daughter: 1) Watch Taken; 2) Consult a thesaurus. However, it turns out the movie seems to take its cues less from Liam Neeson’s steely determination than from its own star’s brand of straight-faced goofiness. Director Simon West plays it light — giving the action sequences the aerated gloss of a heist flick — while Josh Lucas seems to be trying his hardest to beat Cage at his own over-the-top game as the grimy, nutso kidnapper with a missing leg and an absurdly single-minded vendetta. (Lucas’ villain is what would happen if you took Cage’s amputee baker in Moonstruck, got him hooked on meth, and left him to marinate in an East Village adult video store for a decade.) The longest stretch of logical plotting lasts about forty seconds, and the deep-rooted silliness makes it hard to take anything in the film seriously. But at least it has the decency never to ask us to. C?
STOLEN Nicolas Cage (Millennium Films)
Genre: Action/Adventure, Thriller; Starring: Nicolas Cage; Director: Simon West; MPAA Rating: R; Distributor: Millenium Entertainment
Posted September 15 2012 — 12:00 AM EDT
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