Magazine article The Spectator

Chaste Thoughts

Magazine article The Spectator

Chaste Thoughts

Article excerpt

There was this evil Albanian gang specialising in kidnapping young girls, forcibly addicting them to heroin and selling them on to wealthy Arabs as sex slaves. To simplify their operation and reduce shipping costs, the gang had decided to concentrate their efforts on kidnapping middle-class Californian girls arriving at Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris. But when they abducted a sensitive teenager on her first visit to Europe, they hadn't reckoned on the determination of her war-hero father to find and rescue her.

The girl was worth much more to the Albanians than their other captives 'because she is a vier-jeen'. She was therefore set aside for an invitation-only auction for highrolling Arab sheikhs. Dad's rescue operation was further complicated because the cheeseeating surrender monkey Parisian cops were being paid off by the greasy Albanians.

Nevertheless, Dad killed and maimed his way to the centre of the Albanians' sordid web and rescued his daughter right from under the auctioneer's gavel.

After ten minutes of this tripe, I could feel the woman with whom I went to see the film trying to catch my eye in the darkness.

I refused to meet it. Let's give it a chance, I thought. Surely nothing could be this implausible or racist. Maybe there would be an unexpected twist in the plot that would restore our faith. Was the daughter a highly trained agent in the pay of the Israeli secret services, perhaps? Or were we on a planet in a distant galaxy and these people were all robots? But, no. One shoot-out between cartoon characters followed another until finally Dad carried his daughter away from the carnage and took her back to the land of the free, got her a job as a singer and everyone cried for joy. As we reeled out of the cinema I said to the usherette standing in the lobby, 'That was the biggest load of crap I have ever seen.' 'Thank you very much! Goodnight!' she chirped in an east European accent, possibly having misheard me.

Afterwards we went for a burger and chips. We're neither of us snobbish about films. We don't ask for much. One of my alltime movie favourites is Escape to Victory, for example. And my friend makes a point of seeing any film said to have top-of-therange special effects. But Taken, starring Liam Neeson, is simply ludicrous. …

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