25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
3.5 stars... "You're not just an analyst anymore, you're operational!",
This review is from: Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
"Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit" (2014 release; 105 min.) brings a reinvented Jack Ryan to the screen, this time as played by Chris Pine, he of the "Star Trek" reboot franchise (as Capt. Kirk). As the movie opens, we see Ryan on the campus of the London School of Economics when 9/11 happens. Ryan volunteers for the Marine Corps and is deployed in Afghanistan, where he gets severely injured during a helicopter attack (check out the Bengals/Ravens jokes before the attack!). During rehab, he gets to know Cathy Muller (played by Keira Knightley), who is about to graduate from med school. Flash forward 10 years: Ryan is now working for the CIA as a financial analyst at a Wall Street investment bank, and he notices weird financial transactions going on in Russia. He reports it to his CIA boss Tom Harper (played by Kevin Costner), and off goes Ryan to Moscow to investigate further. To tell you more would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Couple of comments: first, this film is directed by none other than Kenneth Branagh (who also plays "the bad guy"). When I see his name, I usually think of William Shakespeare and theater, not action movies. Not that he doesn't do a pretty good job at it. Second, it really takes a jump of faith to see Chris Pine as Jack Ryan, for one thing, he just looks too young! Third, Keira Knightley oozes charm (and beauty) as Ryan's girlfriend/fiancee. Fourth, as to the action itself, something seemed a little off once in a while. For example, the crucial break-in sequence (where Ryan penetrates the office of the bad guy) goes off way too easily. Last but not least, there are some great one-liners in the movie which bring some much needed light touches. At one point Ryan convinces his Wall Street banker boss that he isn't going to rock the boat, to which his boss replies: "it's not a boat, it's a luxury yacht, and we're all on it together", ha! Later on, when Ryan meets up with Harper in Moscow, Ryan complains that he was promised an office job, to which Harper relies "You're not just a financial analyst anymore, you're operational", and hands him a gun, ha!
Bottom line: while this is certainly not a bad movie per se, and the time flew by quickly, I was nevertheless slightly let down as something is not quite right with this Jack Ryan reboot. The screening I saw this at was surprisingly well attended for a weekday evening show, so it must be that there is a demand for this movie. If you like Jack Ryan, I suggest you check this out for yourself, be it in the theater or on DVD/Blu-ray, and draw your own conclusions about this reboot.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 3 Feb 2014 13:22:56 GMT
Your right. To much Bourne, not enough Clancy. This is a stand alone and not based on any of Clancy's books. Jack Ryan is not an action man, he's an analyst and later The
President. If Harrison Ford hadn't screwed the franchise up by wanting too much creative control, we'd probably still be getting movies based on Clancy's source material. If they
want another action /spy franchise, then why not Vince Flynn's Mitch Rapp or Brad Thor's Scott Harvarth. This movie has not performed as well as the previous Ryan movies and
I guess its down to a couple of things. Too many different actors playing Ryan [though it hasn't hurt Bond over the last 50 years] plus turning the clock back on the character
whilst keeping the current time line. I hope the movie's fortunes pick up globally,as I'd like to see another one. But somehow I don't think we will.
In reply to an earlier post on 23 May 2014 19:15:21 BDT
Jack Leron says:
Ryan is not an action man? Even before H.F. (Harrison Ford), Ben Affleck was playing spy in Russia and tried to survive a nuclear bomb. And Alec Baldwin changed boats like he would change buses. I didn't find the Harrison's movies really that different. I didn't see this new one yet, but I will. Yours.
In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jun 2014 18:26:03 BDT
Actually, Harrison Ford played Ryan a whole 10 years before Ben Affleck.
In reply to an earlier post on 2 Jun 2014 21:44:06 BDT
Jack Leron says:
Sorry, I was thinking Alec and not Ben. Alec Baldwin: 1990 (The Hunt for Red October). Harrison Ford: 1992 (Patriot Games), and 1994 (Clear and Present Danger). Ben Affleck: 2002 (The Sum of All Fears).
Posted on 10 Aug 2014 15:20:09 BDT
Mr. Stephen Kennedy says:
Thanks for the review, have to agree for the most part. Though I think you're being unkind to dismiss Branagh as 'just that Shakespeare guy'.. I think he's shown himself to be more than that, not least with Thor, which surely you would admit was a big budget action movie..?
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