Notable Cast: Tom Cruise, Rosamund Pike, Richard Jenkins, Jai Courtney, Robert Duvall
Although I am not privy to the Jack Reacher novels from Lee Child nor am I a huge crime thriller fan, "Jack Reacher" intrigued me. Firstly, it was controversial in casting of Cruise as the lead from the book fans and secondly, it's based on the ninth book of the series. An odd choice considering this would be the first time we see the heroic and Sherlock-esque Reacher on film. What I didn't expect was that, despite all of this controversy and hum-drum, "Jack Reacher" is quite the solid mystery thriller. Yeah, it tends to be a little too predictable and a bit long winded as a film, but it was enjoyable and it certainly creates a strong title character to be franchised.
After five people seem to be randomly murdered on a sidewalk in Pittsburgh, the evidence all clearly points to one man: James Barr (Sikora), an ex-military sniper. When arrested though, Barr only asks for one thing. To find Jack Reacher (Cruise). Reacher, a nomadic man with no ties, shows up anyway after hearing about the shooting and wants to help prosecute Barr against the will of his attorney (Pike). What Reacher uncovers though is a little bigger than just one man fighting to be proven innocent and this ex-military detective will have to go to some gray areas to make sure that justice is served.
|"Tom Cruise is Jack Reacher? BULLSHIT!" --said every Jack Reacher book fan ever.|
Not only do you get this cynical and questionable hero for a lead, but the writers/director were smart enough to add in a handful of action sequences for him to kick ass in. "Jack Reacher" is far from an 'action' movie, but when the action scenes pop up - they are well placed and effectively shot. From a nut punching street fight, to an oddly hilarious bat and bathtub sequence, to the climactic Jack McClane versus Ethan Hunt fist fight in the rain I loved each action piece here. It was done in a realistic tone with surprising effectiveness and was easily the biggest surprise of the film.
|Jack McClane (Jai Courtney) versus Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise). It's an modern action fan's dream come true!|
Written By Matt Reifschneider
*On a side note, I love how ridiculous the home video cover is with the American flag on it. It's TERRIBLE.