Face Off: Bryan Mills (Taken) vs. R'as al Ghul (Batman Begins)

In last week's Face-Off column, dueling 1997 volcano movies had a rumble, and while I determined that VOLCANO was the bigger blast, more of you decided DANTE'S PEAK packed a bigger punch.

This weekend has Liam Neeson back on the big screen (reuniting with his UNKNOWN director Jaume Collet-Serra), this time kicking ass at 30,000 feet in the airline thriller NON-STOP. We all know Neeson is undeniably tough, but is he tough enough to take on... himself? Bryan Mills (TAKEN) and Ra's al Ghul (BATMAN BEGINS) go at it!
Travels to Paris and retrieves his kidnapped daughter, then later while on assignment in Istanbul he must escape from being kidnapped himself, and then rescue his kidnapped wife
Pretends to be the mysterious Henri Ducard, trains Bruce Wayne as an expert in martial arts and subterfuge, and then tries to destroy Gotham City with crazy gas
Sam, Casey and Bernie, his ex-CIA buddies and occasional bodyguard co-workers
Dr. Jonathan Crane (aka the Scarecrow), an unhinged psychologist who loves to play with powerful hallucinogenic toxins, and the League of Shadows, an organization of ninja soldiers who want to eradicate corrupt cities
Shooting, kicking, tracking, more shooting, punching, and a bit of torture. Is also effective at telephone conversations
Stealth, deception, swordsmanship, and tactical brilliance
A seemingly inexhaustible supply of Albanian mobsters and their extended families
-The Dark Knight himself, Batman

-Commissioner (then Sergeant) Jim Gordon

Kim (Maggie Grace), who runs like she has a physical disability but drives like Dominic Toretto
Talia (Marion Cotillard), who assumes a false identity and takes control of Wayne Enterprises, then tries to use a nuclear bomb to fulfill her father's mission of destroying Gotham but fails and dies in a truck crash
-"I don't know who you are. I don't know what you want. If you are looking for ransom, I can tell you I don't have money. But what I do have are a very particular set of skills -- skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you. If you let my daughter go now, that'll be the end of it. I will not look for you, I will not pursue you. But if you don't, I will look for you. I will find you. And I will kill you."

-"Now's not the time for dick measuring, Stuart!"

-"It's a flesh wound. But if you don't get me what I need, the last thing you'll see before I make your children orphans is the bullet I put between her eyes!"

-[While electrocuting Marko]
"You either give me what I need or this switch will stay on until they turn the power off for lack of payment on the bill."

-Bryan: "I have to make sure these people never bother us again in our lives."
Kim: "What are you going to do?"
Bryan: "What I do best."
-"Death does not wait for you to be ready! Death is not considerate, or fair! And make no mistake. Here, you face Death."

-"You have learned to bury your guilt with anger. I will teach you to confront it, and to face the truth. You know how to fight six men. We can teach you how to engage six hundred. You know how to disappear. We can teach you to become truly invisible. "

-"Crime can not be tolerated. Criminals thrive on the indulgence of society's understanding. "

-"A vigilante is just a man lost in the scramble for his own gratification. He can be destroyed, or locked up. But if you make yourself more than just a man, if you devote yourself to an ideal, and if they can't stop you, then you become something else entirely. "

-"Surely, a man who spends his nights scrambling over the rooftops of Gotham wouldn't begrudge me dual identities?"
He's coming back to murderize more bad guys in TAKEN 3!
Had a runaway Gotham monorail dropped on him when he was not saved by Batman (although he later appeared in Jedi spirit form to antagonize a wounded and imprisoned Bruce Wayne)
R'as al Ghul
A tight contest! Neeson's as hard as they come, and both characters kick some serious ass with single-minded determination, if with slightly different perspectives on justice. Kidnapping magnet Bryan Mills may have slaughtered his way through almost the entire population of Eastern European criminals, but he's only pulling out that particular set of skills when the situation demands it. Ra's al Ghul is a little more proactive and thinks on a larger scale. He also has some nifty ninja skills, a genius intellect, and a unique method for trying to extinguish corruption. He's just not so great at riding trains.

Agree? Disagree? Which do you prefer?



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