Director: Christopher McQuarrie
Written by: Christopher McQuarrie (screenplay), Lee Child (book)
Starring: Tom Cruise, Rosamund Pike, and Richard Jenkins
Genre: Action | Crime | Thriller
Synopsis: A homicide investigator digs deeper into a case involving a trained military sniper who shot five random victims.
‘Jack Reacher’ has a unique combination of elements. The main character is that familiar James Bond type hero that seems to be invincible but in between the action there are also elements of mystery and suspense. While the film tends to not focus on one particular genre, there is just enough focus on each element to hold the audience’s interest and produce an enjoyable film.
When a film carries the main character’s name in its title, you can expect the focus to be on one character while the other roles could just be considered supporting roles. He is a character that we’ve seen Tom Cruise play before and he tends to play these types of characters well. Reacher is a quiet, fearless individual with a subtle sense of humor that is shown through a variety of action hero type quips. His character is meant to be mysterious, which is fitting of the role, but still left me wanting to know more about who ‘Jack Reacher’ really was. The supporting roles of Helen (Pike) and her father (Rodin) are more elements of the story than characters themselves. They act as catalysts that move the investigation along as the mystery slowly unravels. The combination of these generic supporting characters and the purposefully mysterious origin of Reacher provide very little character development even if it may be intended. But what the film lacks in character development it makes up for in action and suspense.
When the action occurred, it was well executed and exciting which made me want more during the downtime. I wanted to see more of Reacher’s abilities as a fighter and since they made him out to be a sort of one man army, I wanted him to be pushed to his limits. A particular action scene that I liked was the car chase. The chase was real, as well as the driver’s abilities. There were no unbelievable stunts, Reacher would hit walls, make wrong turns, and make mistakes like any experienced driver. The crime mystery was a bit predictable and at times had me bored when Reacher was going through the motions of unraveling the case. The case isn’t completely cut and dry but don’t expect for some elaborate scheme to unfold at the end.
Overall I would say that I enjoyed the film despite the predictable plot. Tom Cruise plays a character that he has proven to play well and ‘Jack Reacher’ has the potential to be a franchise character in film. Many will enjoy this film as it gives a proper dose of action and suspense that holds the audience’s interest for the most part. If they do continue to make ‘Jack Reacher’ films, I would hope that they make the plot a little more complex, provide a bit more detail about his origin, and add a bit more action with more formidable opponents.
Jack Reacher – 7.0 out of 10.
A nice combination of action and suspense…