Stolen is an action thriller directed by Simon West (who is best known for directing The Expendables 2, The Mechanic, and Con Air) and written by David Guggenheim, who brought us Safe House.
Stolen revolves around Will Montgomery (Nicolas Cage), who fathers a baby girl and is a wanted thief. One evening, while trying to pull off a heist with his partner Vincent (Josh Lucas), they are caught in the act and during their attempt to flee, Vincent, despite suffering a severe leg injury, manages to escape, but is later presumed dead. Will, who is caught at the hands of FBI agent Tim Harland (Danny Huston) is sentenced to eight years in prison. Eight years later, upon his release, Will attempts to reconnect with his daughter by meeting her at a local coffee shop, ultimately repenting for his dirty deeds and re starting his life. Upon their meeting, his daughter is disgusted with him, resulting in even more distance, and hitches a cab to her therapy session. Minutes later, Will receives a call from Vincent, who reveals his death was faked and that he has his daughter locked in the back of the trunk of his cab, and demands 10 million dollars in twelve hours, or else his daughter will die. Will tells Agent Harland of this, but refuses to help him and doesn’t believe a word is saying. Will must then rely on his wits, talents, and knowledge to rescue his daughter and meet Vincent’s demands.
Stolen was critically bashed for being stale, pretentious, and a clone of Liam Neeson’s taken, due to both films revolving around a father saving a kidnapped child. Many critics complained Stolen fails as Nicolas Cage’s character was just an ordinary individual with ordinary fighting capabilities. Having ordinary capabilities is what made the film likable and realistic. The action sequences were filmed gracefully, as each sequence wasn’t over the top. The suspense of whether Will’s daughter will live or die draws the viewer in from the minute the credits roll.
Overall, Stolen is an action thriller that is well written, directed, and acted with gracefully and realistically filmed action sequences.