C.I.A. analyst Jack Ryan must stop the plans of a Neo-Nazi faction that threatens to induce a catastrophic conflict between the United States and Russia's newly elected President by detonating a nuclear weapon at a football game in Baltimore, Maryland.
Jack Reacher must uncover the truth behind a major government conspiracy in order to clear his name. On the run as a fugitive from the law, Reacher uncovers a potential secret from his past that could change his life forever.
This new version of the saga of C.I.A. analyst Jack Ryan begins as Jack attends the London School of Economics. 9/11 happens. He subsequently enlists in the Marines, sustaining severe injuries when the chopper deploying him to Afghanistan is shot down. While in intense rehab, he grabs the attention of Harper, a man who works for the C.I.A., and who would like Jack to finish his studies, get a job on Wall Street, and seek out terrorist plots through their financial transactions. Ten years pass. Jack finds anomalies in the accounts of a Russian named Cherevin, and thinks he should go to Russia to check out what's going on. He's told not to tell anyone who he is, including his girlfriend Cathy, which makes her doubt him when she catches him in some lies. In Russia, Cherevin assigns someone to assist Jack, but when the two are alone, the man tries to kill Jack instead, so Jack kills him. Obviously, Cherevin is hiding something. Jack goes to meet him and says he'll bring his fiancée along,...Written by
email@example.com / revised by statmanjeff
The painting in Cherevin's office is Bogdan Willewalde's "Czar's Guard Captures 4th Line Regiment's Standard at Austerlitz". The Battle of Austerlitz was a victory for Napoleon, and the engagement depicted in the painting was the only major Allied success in the battle. Ryan later alludes to the painting and wrongly connects it to the Battle of Waterloo, where Napoleon used cannon fire to distract attention from his attack. Unlike Austerlitz, Waterloo ended in Napoleon's defeat. See more »
The tail on Aleksandr in Dearborn is driving on the left side of the road, obviously located in UK, not Michigan. See more »
Brainless, fun rebirth of Tom Clancy's all-American CIA hero.
Jack Ryan: nine novels (15 if you include the Jack Ryan Jr series), five films, four lead actors (Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, Ben Affleck & now Chris Pine) and two reboots. Tom Clancy's best-known character has endured and enjoyed a varied existence to say the least.
Intended as the second reimagining, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, is more a rebirth of the Marine turned CIA agent turned world-saving, death-defying, awe-inspiring, all American hero. Forget the books, ignore the timeline, disengage the brain, abandon reason, slice the pizza, sip the beer and settle down for a mindless romp. Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit is predictable fun with barely a toe in the world of reality but it is fun just as long as you forget to think.
Jack Ryan (Pine) is a student at the London School of Economics when terrorists fly two aeroplanes into the World Trade Centre towers. 9/11 prompts Ryan to make a career about-turn and join the Marines. Fast forward a few years and Ryan is undergoing intense rehab in a military hospital having barely survived after a chopper he was aboard was shot down in Afghanistan. Ryan is firstly observed and then recruited by the shadowy Thomas Harper (Kevin Costner) as a desk-bound CIA analyst, but a trip to Russia to investigate the nefarious financial dealings of Viktor Cheverin (Kenneth Branagh) elevates Ryan very swiftly to role of field agent, and an action man is (re)born.
Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit is neither as loud nor as brainless as last year's White-House-under-attack double act of White House Down and Olympus Has Fallen but it is about as much fun and has at least as many plot holes. The entire finale comes about as a result of a catalogue of unrealistically simple contrivances and there is no reason to have Ryan's girlfriend, Cathy Muller (Keira Knightly), anywhere near Moscow other than to sex up the film and redress the situation of the underused Anne Archer from the Harrison Ford years.
There are no prizes for acting here. Pine may have found franchise work for the next few years but Costner, Knightly and Branagh are here for the light relief and the easy pay cheques. Let's just hope that for each of them this is merely a short break from the superior work of which they are all capable.
Branagh, on double duties as actor/director, will have done himself a lot of favours here with the money men at the studios and it further cements his position as a gun for hire in Hollywood, but all these popcorn flicks he's turning out for the studios take him further away from shooting another series of Wallander for the BBC. And I for one am not happy about that.
It must be possible to make a thriller that is exciting, suspenseful, vaguely realistic and intelligent, but Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit isn't it. 'Fun' is fine but it isn't memorable or satisfying. Less a case of 'could do better', more a case of 'has been better.'
For more reviews from The Squiss, subscribe to my blog and like the Facebook page.
49 of 80 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this