First off, I think Tom Cruise is a little crazy. You might think Tom Cruise is a little crazy. In fact, I don’t think I’m going out on a limb to say Tom Cruise thinks Tom Cruise is a little crazy. Let’s just get that out there now. Despite the fact that just about everyone seems to think there is a little bit of crazy in TC, he remains to be one of the biggest action/drama stars in movies to this day. He’s made dozens upon dozens of films and he fills seats. This is a good skill when it comes to being a movie star. In his new movie, Jack Reacher, I think a little more of the crazy found its way back into Tom Cruise. Whether that’s good or bad, I’ll let you decide.
Jack Reacher is a film based off a book entitled One Shot, written by Lee Child. The movie is written around the book’s protagonist, Jack Reacher (Tom Cruise, MI:1,2,3). The film begins by watching a public shooting unfold. The police arrive and seemingly clean up the violence quickly and arrest the shooter. When questioned, the accused man Barr refuses to admit to the crime and only tells the police, “Find Jack Reacher.” Reacher is an ex-army military police investigator, highly trained, highly credited, and a little bit of a crazy hobo (Perfect for TC). The rest of the film follows as Jack investigates a seemingly open and shut case, as no one else would, as if the shooter is innocent. Jack is accompanied by Helen Rodin (Rosamund Pike, The Big Year & Johnny English Reborn), a defense attorney assigned to defend Barr. Reacher slowly begins to unravel a conspiracy to frame Barr for the shooting in order to cover up a Russian hitman known as the Zec. Reacher is also assisted by an ex-marine sniper named Cash (Robert Duvall, Apocolypse Now) as he attempts to unmask their communist ruse. Down with the commies!!
Someday, someone somewhere will be creative and write some new and original films for people to see and enjoy. Until then, we will be forever be stuck watching people remake films that have already been made; films based on cartoons we liked as children, or films based on books that our 13 year old sisters should have left on their prepubescent boyfriend’s nightstand along with their innocence. I’m not pointing any fingers though. Well…maybe just one and it’s pointed right at you Tom Cruise! After watching this film, I became even more aware that Tom Cruise loves Tom Cruise. I’m pretty sure even he refers to himself in 3rd person…but, I digress. I have never read the book One Shot but I would imagine it’s along the lines of a decent Tom Clancy novel. I could be wrong, but that’s what this film felt like, a mixture of Tom Clancy and Jason Bourne. I also noticed that Tom Cruise producing a movie where Tom Cruise is the badass really just seemed like a way for Tom Cruise to boost his ego.
The beginning of the film is also fairly intense, and I saw this film before the catastrophe in Newtown, Connecticut that occurred only a week ago. The premiere was postponed a week in Pittsburgh out of respect for the victims as it may hit a little too close to home for some viewers. The sensitive subject matter may have an unwanted effect on audiences no matter how long they waited. However, that being said I have to say there were some solid points to this movie. The script writing was rather decent, at least in the bulk of the movie, and kept the film moving. It was fluid and witty and showed off the smart, always-thinking persona of the Jack Reacher character. The film sequences are inventive and tight, always giving the audience a crisp perspective of the action. Action being one of the things this film is definitely not lacking in.
In the end, Jack Reacher proves to be an interesting experience and take on your typical conspiracy plot. It contains tons of action and lots of fast cars and car chases, which have the potential to keep the older audiences and younger audience interested equally. While hardcore fans might find the 5’7” Tom Cruise doesn’t match up to the 6’5” Jack which Lee Child writes about physically, TC did not do a horrible job in my opinion. If there’s anything TC can do, it’s play crazy. Oh, and talk about aliens. He likes aliens.
I give Jack Reacher 3 “dirty nut shots” out of 5.
by Jason Burleson