Taylor “the abs” Lautner gets to be the lead in his own action movie with Abduction, a movie that plays out rather like ‘The Bourne Identity For Dummies’.
When we get introduced to high schooler Nathan (Lautner) we learn that he’s a bit of a dick. Unsurprisingly, his father’s even more of a dick, which I guess makes sense. Except for the fact that Nathan’s father isn’t his father at all. Through an extremely unlikely plot contrivance, Nathan learns that he’s actually adopted. No sooner has he discovered this than a bunch of evil Eastern Europeans are after him and his loved ones. This includes the girl-next-door (who actually lives over the road), Karen (Lily Collins).
Abduction doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. It does, however, feature Lautner topless in the first five minutes, so I suppose it’s attempting to please a certain section of the community. Alas, his physique isn’t matched by his acting ability, so most of the time he comes off as an underwear model who’s really good at posing but no so good at delivering lines. The Powers That Be, however, clever things that they are, have surrounded Lautner with a bunch of wonderful older and more experienced actors who do a pretty decent job of convincing us that the decidedly average script has something to offer. Thus, we have Sigourney Weaver, Mario Bello, Jason Isaacs and Alfred Molina doing solid work and managing to mould the film into an acceptable action thriller.
Because, as much as it’s all very silly, Abduction gets the job done. The action is well handled and the film moves at a brisk pace, only slowing once in a while for some redundant teen angst-driven dialogue that is thankfully brief. Of course, one of the major problems with the film would have to be that there’s no actual, you know, abduction featured. At all. In that sense, it challenges Kidnapped as a contender for most inaccurate movie title of 2011. Unless of course it refers to hip abductions, which I’m sure Lautner does plenty of when working on his core strength.
Lily Collins gives a perfectly capable performance but only gets to be the damsel in distress. The filmmakers are clearly hoping for a franchise (which might explain a certain unbilled cameo), so here’s hoping that Nathan imparts some knowledge of kickarsery onto Karen in time for Abduction 2 (which, if we’re lucky, will actually involve an abduction of some kind). By all means see this film, but you’d be better off watching any of the Matt Damon’s Bourne films instead…Rating: