- Released Internationally on 20/12/12
- Released in Malta by KRS on 26/12/12
Preview (first published 01/12/12 in VIDA Magazine)
Tom Cruise’s post-Tropic Thunder renaissance continues, and just in case the Mission: Impossible franchise loses popularity, he has now landed another role as a modern day action hero, with franchise potential. Jack Reacher is a rather unorthodox but highly effective crime fighter, who uses his past military skills rather than donning any fancy costumes, and he’s quite good with his hands too. This film is an adaptation of just one of the series of novels about the character, and it’s adapted by Christopher McQuarrie, who will always be ‘the genius who wrote The Usual Suspects’. If you liked Angelina Jolie’s Salt from a couple of years ago, this should work as the male equivalent.
This film is fun. It doesn’t pretend to be anything it’s not, but rather embraces its role as a smart action film with franchise potential. Tom Cruise is still evidently deeply in love with himself, but to be fair this is one scenario where it works, and his cocksure titular character manages to be both slightly over the top and likeable.
The films opens with a powerful, largely silent extended scene, which as the film progresses is later seen from different angles and provides an intriguing ‘whodunit’ scenario that forms the backbone of the plot. Once that is established, Reacher arrives on scene in stylish fashion, and gets to work. His clever dialogue is often countered effectively by Rosamund Pike’s character, with whom he shows good chemistry. But despite being very witty at times, the script throws in enough humour to make it all very easygoing and engaging. There’s also a fair amount of original action, with even good old fashioned fist fights getting a few new twists.
Throughout all the proceedings, however, not much is as it seems, and things finally fall satisfactorily into place, although the film does lose some originality and smartness in the third act. More importantly, though, the film does a great job of letting the audience get to know Jack, but at the same time leaving enough mystery for us to be curious about what his next adventure will be, if and when he shows up.