Jack Ryan returns with little depth

Film feels rushed
but does have some
good action scenes

By Jonathan GarciaReporter

“Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit” is a reboot of the famous Jack Ryan series created by Tom Clancy. The film is directed by Kenneth Branagh, who also stars in the movie alongside Chris Pine, Kevin Costner and Keira Knightley. The movie was originally scheduled for a release on Christmas Day but was pushed back to Jan. 17 to avoid competing with “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

The character of Jack Ryan has previously been portrayed by Alec Baldwin in “The Hunt for Red October,” Harrison Ford in “Patriot Games” and “Clear and Present Danger” and Ben Affleck in “The Sum of All Fears.” Pine steps into the role of the famous chief analyst/CIA agent and the film tries to use him to lure young audiences to see this movie because of the fame he got portraying Capt. Kirk in the latest “Star Trek” films. Unfortunately, the film fails to connect with the young audiences and fans of the original Jack Ryan films will be disappointed to know this one did not live up to the hype.

The movie is about Ryan (Pine) being recruited into the CIA by Thomas Harper (Costner) after being in physical therapy for an accident while he was serving in the Marines. Harper assigns Ryan to investigate terrorist funding in Moscow and Viktor Cherevin (Branagh), who is linked to these accounts. While investigating, Ryan’s girlfriend, Cathy Muller (Knightley), gets involved with his business after knowing what he is and Jack must put a stop to this dastardly plot before it’s too late while trying to keep his girlfriend out of harm’s way.

The film has some decent action scenes that keep the audience’s attention and keep them from dozing off but does have some questionable use of shaky cam for the fight scenes. The acting in the movie was good and Pine does a competent job at portraying Ryan but he couldn’t match the level of Ford and Baldwin. Knightley, Branagh and Costner all try to save this film and they do a good job but the flaws of this film were too deep.

Its biggest flaw is the movie felt as if it was going too fast and things weren’t really explained well as the film rushes to clock in at about 1 hour and 45 minutes. The other Jack Ryan movies clocked in at almost 2 hours and a three of the previous films even went over the 2-hour mark. Because this film is shorter than the previous films things start to feel rushed and a good 25-30 minutes could have been added to give the story more depth. Fans of the original films will feel disappointed after seeing this film and newcomers to the Jack Ryan series will not be interested in a sequel.

Although this isn’t the worst film ever made, “Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit” is one of the most disappointing movies of the year and is only worth a rental when it hits Redbox vendors and Netfilx. If you are wanting to go see a movie go see “Lone Survivor” or “The Wolf of Wall Street,” and if you really want to see this movie it’s better off to wait till it comes out as a rental.

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