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Jack Reacher back to reviews
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It's like a group of people sat down to try to write a clever film
A sniper takes out five people, the case seems watertight and the main suspect writes just three words before he's beaten into a coma. Get Jack Reacher. The film plays out as a mixture of detective story and action film as Reacher deduces his way fairly cleverly to get closer to the heart of the goal but also beats up some bad people too. They give a quite clever justification for his cleverness and hand-to-hand-combat skills, he was a brilliant military cop, which is like being a normal cop except 'every suspect is a trained killer'. But it goes too far, at one point he's investigating a shooting range and the camera focuses on some targets. I have a flash of horror as I realise they're going to contrive some reason for him to shoot at them and he's going to turn out to be a world class sniper as well. They do and he is (although they do let one person beat him).

Jack Reacher spent most of his life abroad and after all the years of military service, came home and just dropped out of sight. But it's his one point of interest. It's fun to watch him do his stuff, but he's too perfect and has very little personality. It's hard to forget he's Tom Cruise. He has a habit of showing off his intelligence in a cool way, but it ends up with him behaving badly. He never tells people whats going on, and eventually you have to ask why? Something bad happens to a person and it's entirely because Reacher was too busy aping Sherlock Holmes.

There's tonal inconsistencies, this film has a scene where two thugs accidentally beat each other up with baseball bats and a scene where a man tries to bite his own fingers off. There's a clever subversion thats immediately turned absolutely ridiculous.

But by far the worst part is the ending, nothing is resolved and the mystery sputters out. It's bad enough that one of the characters actually asks Reacher if that's it, he's just going to leave. And he replies yes.

But there are equal good aspects, the supporting cast are all excellent, I initially thought the heroine too monotone but she grew on me surprisingly. The action is excellent and the climax is effective and low key. There's a fist fight that actually looks like it hurts and doesn't have the Villain with the upper hand right up until the finish. Instead he's worn down slowly.

In the end it's aims higher than typical action
A question for the people who've seen it: Is Jack Reacher a superhero? He has superhuman abilities, he fights crime, he has his own moral code separate from the law. He keeps himself secret from people and his name is whispered in full with fear and anticipation. There were many many moments in the film that could have been taken straight from a Marvel/DC flick
comment #17561 TomWithNoNumbers 5th Jan 13
The key points of Reacher's personality in the books is he is good with numbers and profiling, he hates to stay in one place for more a few days at a time and spends most of his time hitching, and he is agressively determined to pay people back.

In One Shot (the book this is based on), he was already on the way to the scene because the framed sniper had gone crazy before in Iraq and got away with it. Reacher is on the scene to get this guy and bury him, and realizes the shooting is a frame when he starts looking into it.

Then the real bad guy starts trying to kill him, which really ticks him off.

comment #17562 tomless 5th Jan 13
That's pretty much all in there, I'm impressed, sounds like they kept it quite close
comment #17567 TomWithNoNumbers 5th Jan 13
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