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Clear and Present Danger
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pretty good Clancy adaptation

Author: HelloTexas11 from United States
11 June 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

'Clear and Present Danger' is full of great scenes which never really come together to make a great movie. It's trying to tell too many different stories and so, even with nearly two and half hours screen time, each story feels too short and incomplete. There are at least a half-dozen major plot threads running concurrently; give the director credit for at least TRYING to fit everything that matters in from another of Tom Clancy's super-fat bestsellers. The other problem though is Jack Ryan (Harrison Ford). He is not the action hero of 'Patriot Games.' Here, he is a dupe at first, then a decoy at the end, and in between sort of a standard-issue government official (albeit a rare honest one). John Clark (Willem Defoe) is the closest thing to a 'hero' present. There is a large ensemble cast, everyone has a role to play, and Ryan frankly is reduced to being just another member of that ensemble. In short, the US President orders (without stating so explicitly, to cover his own butt) a covert military operation against drug cartels in Colombia. Clark heads up a small, elite squad that then begins going around blowing up labs and generally disrupting the drug business. In apparent retaliation, the FBI director and his entourage are killed in their motorcade while on a visit to Bogota. A Cuban intelligence expert working for one of the drug lords approaches National Security Adviser Cutter (the president's right-hand man) for a truce, and a deal-in exchange for his cutting drug exports to the US in half, he wants the inserted military team cut off and abandoned, so he can kill them. As mentioned, there are several other side-plots (Admiral Greer has terminal cancer, an FBI secretary is seduced by the Cuban intelligence agent and murdered) so there is a lot of jumping back and forth among the various players and situations. Among the best scenes is the ambush of the FBI director's motorcade in Colombia; very well-staged and realistic, it's a real nail-biter of a sequence. But there are several other good action set-pieces as well. 'Clear and Present Danger' does not seem as long as it is. It's just too bad the director, Philip Noyce, and the trio of screenwriters couldn't make the film a more cohesive package and found better ways to pump up Ford's role. After 'The Hunt for Red October' and 'Patriot Games,' we have certainly come to expect more from the Jack Ryan character than to be a fall-guy for a slippery Prez and his corrupt underlings, even if he belatedly turns the tables on them.

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Jack Ryan's third entry with lots of noisy action , tension and thriller

Author: ma-cortes
20 January 2008

Third installment of the Agent Jack Ryan with lots of gun-rattling action, suspense and intrigue. Ryan is a high officer from CIA ,married(Anne Archer) and with sons(Thora Birch).After death a closed friend by Colombian drugs Cali cartel(Miguel Sandoval,Joaquin De Almeida) , the President(Donald Moffat) himself sanctions a covert operation against the drug barons by sending crack soldiers into the Colombia country under the command of mercenaries(Willem Dafoe,Benjamin Bratt, Raymond Cruz). Harrison Ford's Jack Ryan contracted into White House's staff(Harris Yulin, Henry Czerny,Dean Jones) investigates the events. Ryan thinks he's still after Colombian connections to the dead man's money.

This blockbuster is an excellent adaptation of the novel by Tom Clancy , companion to ¨The hunt for Red October¨ with Ford taking over the role of Ryan from Alec Baldwin and second part ¨Patriot games¨ again with Harrison Ford , who's becoming the king of trilogies . Extraordinaries nail-biting action scenes, specially when Ryan and his partners are trapped by machine-gunners in a network of narrows streets and posteriorly parodied by Leslie Nielsen. Interesting screenplay plenty of twists and thrills by John Milius and Steve Zaillian. Spectacular musical score fitting to action and suspense by James Horner. Colorful and atmospheric cinematography by Donald McAlpine. The picture is well directed by Phillip Noyce, an action movies expert, but he directed ¨Blind fury, The Saint, The Bone Collectors and Patriot games¨ among others. Rating: Above average, the film will like to Harrison Ford fans and Jack Ryan novels followers.

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Jack is back

Author: Daniel Kincaid from Canada
3 October 2007

"Clear and Present Danger" is the second adaptation of a Tom Clancy novel to feature Harrison Ford as CIA agent Jack Ryan. This film involves a murder which is linked to drug cartels in Colombia and the subsequent efforts to take action against the cartels.

Harrison Ford proves again that he is well-suited to the role of Jack Ryan and more appropriate than Alec Baldwin and Ben Affleck for the role. There are some great supporting performances as well, particularly from James Earl Jones, Willem Dafoe and Henry Czerny. Henry Czerny developed an interesting character and the rivalry between him and Jack Ryan was excellent.

The story of this film is better developed than that of "Patriot Games" (1992), which is why I prefer this film. It goes beyond a simple "Jack Ryan combats criminals" story. There is not a lot of intrigue per se, but some interesting turns and friction between Ryan and officials within the United States government. There are also some well-made action sequences in the film to supplement the story. The film's ending was interesting and appropriate. "Clear and Present Danger" proved to be more interesting than its predecessor film, "Patriot Games" (1992).

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better than Patriot Games,but still pretty slow and boring

Author: disdressed12 from Canada
8 August 2007

while i don't think this is a great movie,i do think it is better than the the last one,Jack Ryan film,Patriot Clear and Present Danger,Harrison Ford once again plays Jack Ryan.this one has a bit more intrigue than Patriot Games,and i also like the story is more me,this one has a bigger scope.there is bit more urgency as well.having said that,i still think this movie is boring and slow,more often than not.Like Patriot Games,it's certainly not awful,but again i think maybe something got lost in the translation from Tom Clancy's's also almost 2 and a half hours long,and i think they could have trimmed some of it.still,it has it's good moments.for me,Clear and Present Danger is a 6/10

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Jack Ryan Tackles the Drug Cartels!

Author: ( from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
12 July 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The "Clear and Present Danger" of the title is the danger posed by the influx of drugs coming into the USA. This third installment of Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan series is an exciting adventure of intrigue.

We pick up Ryan a couple of years after "Patriot Games" where he is living happily after with his wife Cathy (Anne Archer) a successful doctor, and his two kids, Sally (Thora Birch) and a new son Jack Jr. (Alexander Lester). Admiral Greer (James Earl Jones), Ryan's mentor is suddenly taken ill and appoints Ryan as his replacement as Deputy Director of National Security.

Meanwhile, friends of President Bennett (Donald Moffat) have been murdered and connected to the drug lords of Columbia. The President's National Security Adviser, James Cutter (Harris Yulin) and his assistant Ritter (Henry Czerny) arrange to have a group of US Army snipers under the direction of agent John Clark (Willem Dafoe)infiltrate Columbian territory and disrupt the drug trade by destroying drug shipments.

Drug lord Ernesto Escobedo (Miquel Sandoval) becomes alarmed and assigns his security chief Felix Cortez (Joaquim de Almeida) to find out who is responsible. Cortez gains the confidence of the secretary of the FBI Director, Moira Wolfson (Ann Magnuson) and learns that Director Jacobs (Tom Tammi) will been sent to Columbia on a secret mission by the President. Ryan already in Columbia, will join the party.

Cortez, who has ambitions of his own, sees this as his chance to take over and attacks the convoy carrying the FBI Director and Ryan. Director Jacobs and Ryan's friend, FBI agent Dan Murray (Tim Grimm) are killed.

Back in Washington, Ryan continues his investigation and begins to suspect Ritter and Cutter. Cortez having no further use for Moira, murders her the same day that her boss is killed, which alerts Ryan to his involvement.

Ryan learns that Cortez plans to overthrow Escobedo and take over. Cutter and Ritter panic and close down Clark's operation trapping his men in the Columbian jungle. Ryan, realizing that he has been set up by the politicians, goes to Columbia once more and enlists Clark's help to rescue the survivors. As Ryan negotiates for their release things suddenly go wrong and...........................

Director Philip Noyce gives us plenty of explosive action among the deceit and double crossing. Harrison Ford again turns in an excellent performance as Ryan, who at times seems to be a fish out of water in his new job. Czerny and Yulin make slimy villains and Moffat a believable President. Willem Dafoe as the abandoned Clark has some good moments as well. Anne Archer has little to do (pity) in this one but to be there for Jack.

Watch for Benjamin Bratt as the chief of the commandos, Dean Jones as Ryan's boss and Hope Lange as Senator Mayo who grills Ryan on his budget proposal.

Followed by "The Sum of All Fears" (2002) in which a much younger Ben Affleck takes over as Jack Ryan....go figure.

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Your word is You

Author: sol1218 from brooklyn NY
23 June 2006

***SPOILERS*** Spoting a yacht sailing erratically in the choppy waters off Florida the US Coast Guard has the boat boarded. On board they find that it's owner was murdered together along with his wife and two children by the group of Columbian drug traffickers who sea-jacked the craft. The man who together with his family that was murdered happened to be businessman Peter Hardin the Presdent of the United States Pres. Bennett, Donald Moffat, best friend.

Outraged at what happened to his friend Pres. Bennett sets into motion a plan to get those who ordered Hardin and his family's murder with his top two advisor's Cutter & Ritter, Harris Yulin & Henry Czerny. To cover his and his advisor's behinds puts the now new CIA Deputy Director Jack Ryan, Harrison Ford, is put officially in charge. Ryan working together with the CIA comes up with the startling findings that Hardin, the presidents best friend, was a major money launder for the Cali Drug Cartel. Hardin using his business and banking expertise was skimming off the profits, that his bosses in the cartel needed to continue their operations, and that was the reason for his and his family's murder.

Getting retired US Special Forces officer John Clark,Willen Defoe, to get a 12 man strike force to hit the Cali Cartel where it hurts, in it's drug processing operations,Ritter is going against Dept. director's Ryan's sworn testimony to the US Congress. Ryan testified that no US military personnel will be used to fight the Columbian drug dealers putting the unsuspecting Ryan in danger, if the operation is ever found out, of being indited for perjury, in him lying to the US Congress.

As all these undercover dealings are going on the head of the Cali Cartel Ernesto Escobedo, Miguel Sandoval, chief counselor and ex-Castro intelligence agent Col. Felix Cortez, Jaquim de Almeida,is planing to set up his boss by getting him knocked off by the CIA. Cortez is also setting up rest of the Cartel leaders to be whacked by arraigning a major hit on the US governments representatives in Columbia. Later there's a Cortez sponsored attack in Bogata killing 5 Secret Service Agents and the the FBI chief Jacobs,Tom Tammi, with Cortez pining the attack on the "innocent" drug dealers.

Cortez has his lover and FBI director Jacobs private secretary Moira Wolfson, Ann Magnuson, unwittingly give him the information of Jacobs whereabouts. This helps Cortez in having Jacobs trapped in a motorcade in downtown Bogata where he was gunned down. Cortez then plans to make a deal with the US, after he had the Cali Cartel leaders knocked off, to take over the cartel's operations and cut the drug supply to the US in half. Making the US government's drug fighting agency DEA and the FBI, as well as President Bennett, look like their "War on Drugs" is a big success to the American people,

It turns out that Cortez's master plan miss-fires when it's discovered after a massacre of most of the cartel leaders, with the exception of Escobedo, that it wasn't a car bomb that was first reported by the news that did them in! It was a laser-guided missile, that could have only been used by the USAF, that did the job. With the sh*t hitting the fan all over D.C and the members of Congress demanding to know why the US military was involved in this unauthorized "hit" two things are quickly put into motion by presidential advisor's Cutter & Ritter 1. the US troops sent into Columbia are sold out by giving up their positions to the cartel mercenaries in order to have them all killed so they'll never live to tell the truth about their mission and 2. Jack Ryan is saddled with the blame for the secret operation with him made, by Cutter & Ritter, to look like he authorized it which he didn't.

Despite it's very complicated plot "Clear and Present Danger" is a top rate political thriller that never lets up, or lets you down, in it's nerve racking suspense. The movie ends with two great final sequences with Jack Ryan having it out in Columbia with Cortez and his hoods in order for him and Clark, the head of the sold-out US troops, to save the remaining US soldiers held captive. The ending just flipped me, as I assume everyone else who saw it, out with an incredible confrontation between Ryan and President Bennett right in the Oval Office that has to be seen to be believed! It's here more then anywhere else in " Clear and Present Danger" where I hoped that for once, just this ONCE, that life would imitate art!

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Second best Jack Ryan film

Author: skiop from United States
11 June 2006

Harrison Ford reprises his role as Jack Ryan after the mediocre "Patriot Games." Ford isn't as good as Alec Baldwin in the role, but he's adequate.

This time, we see Ryan assigned to help fight a South American drug cartel.

This movie is good, but could have been better. The first half reeks of "war on drugs" propaganda that makes it hard for us to enjoy the movie. The second half is much better, in which we realize the scope of what's going on, and with the requisite action.

James Earl Jones returns as Admiral Greer, the comic relief. Anne Archer also returns as Ryan's beautiful wife, but Archer is again rather dull in the role. Willem Dafoe and Benjamin Bratt have small but impressive roles as soldiers in South America. But the real standout is Henry Czerny as the chilling, unscrupulous jerk Ritter.

This isn't as good as "The Hunt for Red October," but it's better than "Patriot Games" and "The Sum of All Fears."

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Unclear is this Present Danger **1/2

Author: edwagreen from United States
10 June 2006

Harrison Ford in this disappointing film about the affects of a Colombian cartel group dealing with drugs.

Ford gets a top job at the CIA when the director (James Earl Jones) develops a terminal illness.

It seems that the President and his assistant are involved in a covert war in Colombia when they are denying this. Ford, their dupe, appears before Congress and is questioned by the late Hope Lange, who portrays a U.S. senator in one brief scene.

The action really starts when an adviser goes to Colombia to negotiate getting back U.S. money. He is murdered there and his assistant, possibly his lover, is found dead the same day as he is killed.

The film falls into other Tom Clancy books made into films. There is plenty of action but a lack of cohesiveness.

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Standard but well made movie.

Author: Boba_Fett1138 from Groningen, The Netherlands
13 November 2005

This is a good and above average political thriller with action elements in it. Still the movie gets a bit too complicated at times and isn't always easy to follow. The movie is also long and some point of the movie are dragging on, even though the pace always remains good and high.

It's hard to say in which genre this movie can be put. For an action movie it doesn't have enough action and for a thriller the story isn't good enough. It makes "Clear and Present Danger" a bit of a mixed movie that is far from perfect but still remains a perfectly watchable movie with some great actors and some memorable moments.

Main problem I had with the movie is that it lacked a distinctive visual style. A problem all Phillip Noyce movies always have. That's why I'm not a too big fan of Phillip Noyce movies, with the exception of "Dead Calm" maybe, which simply had a very solid and tense story. "Clear and Present Danger" is a good made movie but it just is too simply and standard done all and it isn't really anything new.

The cast is great and has some big names in it; Harrison Ford, James Earl Jones, Harris Yulin, Donald Moffat, Henry Czerny, Joaquim de Almeida, Miguel Sandoval, Benjamin Bratt, Willem Dafoe, Ted Raimi in a small role and a still very young Thora Birch.

The music by James Honer is really good. Even though it's typical Horner stuff, like he always used in his '90's movies, it works really well for the movie and truly uplifts the movie at times.

There are some good moments in the movie that are highly memorable such as the convoy ambush which has become a bit of a classic already perhaps. Yes, the movie is perfectly watchable but the story isn't always the best to follow and at times the storytelling is lacking. Still, a movie that I would recommend to you.


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One of the better Harrison Ford movies, but not his best

Author: Philip Van der Veken from Tessenderlo, Belgium
5 August 2005

I'm not going to say that Harrison Ford is my most favorite actor, but I sure like to see him play. That's why I've already seen several of his movies and that's also the reason why I gave this movie a try. I'm normally not too much a fan of action movies, but with him in one of the leading roles, you can always expect something more and better than some simple spectacle.

"Clear and Present Danger" is a movie based on a Tom Clancy novel that tells the story of Doctor Jack Ryan, a CIA analyst who finds himself in the middle of a power struggle within the Colombian drug cartel as well as some dirty political games in the highest ranks of the American political establishment. It all starts with the murder of a close friend and his family of the American president aboard their yacht in the Caribbean, apparently in retaliation for stealing money as part of a money laundering scheme for the cartel. When some of the president's men convince the president to conduct covert actions against the cartel, without telling the Congress of course, and the security chief of one of the cartel bosses tries to play both sides by informing his boss, but trying to organize a coup against the cartel leadership with the help of the CIA at the same time, Ryan soon gets in a very difficult position. When he finds out the entire truth, he sets himself the almost impossible task to save the men that were left behind in the jungle, while trying to save his own reputation and life...

Whether everything shown in this movie is possible or not, I can not really say. But one thing is for sure and that is that we certainly will not know everything the president of the USA is involved in or has knowledge of. I'm convinced that everywhere in the world, the CIA does play some dirty tricks so now and then, as long as it is beneficial for them and / or the country. So in that perspective I must say that this entire movie feels quite believable. And even though this isn't the best movie I've ever seen Harrison Ford play in, I must say that he did a nice job in this movie. His character is still believable, because he never seems to use any weapons and certainly isn't some kind of superman who can escape from entire armies without getting a scratch (although it sometimes started to look like it). I don't think the average CIA office worker is used to carry a lot of guns, machine guns, hand grenades, bazooka's or I don't know what other weaponry you sometimes see them use in all those cheap action flicks, so it's a good thing that they didn't have Jack Ryan carry them either. But there is one thing I don't really believe: I don't think that the CIA would ever send such a high ranking employee in the field.

Nevertheless, Harrison Ford did a nice job with his role and the same can be said about Willem Dafoe, Anne Archer,... But in the end this is a bit too much an action movie to my taste, even though the action shots are certainly nice to watch. The story and the acting are OK and make that this movie is a lot better than the average action flick. That's why I give this movie a rating between 6.5/10 and 7/10.

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