Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Book to Film Review: Jack Reacher

About the film
Jack Reacher is a 2012 action film based on the Lee Child’s novel One Shot. The film has was released at cinemas on 26th December and it has a run time of 130 minutes. Jack Reacher is rated 12A.

When a sniper randomly kills five people, a man named James Barr is arrested for the crime. If he chooses to sign a confession, he gets to choose between death row or a lifetime in prison but instead, Barr asks for Jack Reacher. Reacher is a ghost, a man who can never be found – he finds you. As ex-army police, Reacher knows Barr and his past already and begins to unravel the mystery of what actually happened to those five dead people and whether or not Barr actually did it.

Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher
Rosamund Pike as Helen Rodin
Robert Duvall as Cash
Werner Herzog as The Zec
Richard Jenkins as Alex Rodin
David Oyelowo as Emerson
Michael Raymond-James as Linsky
James Martin Kelly as Rob Farrior
Nicole Forester as Nancy Holt
Alexia Fast as Sandy
Joseph Sikora as James Barr
Jai Courtney as Charlie

What I thought
Jack Reacher was a film I hadn’t heard much about before going to see it. If I’m honest, I only went to see it because it was for an advance screening with my Cineworld Unlimited Card and I had nothing better to do that night. I had never even heard of the books the film was based on, let alone read them.

The strange thing about this film was that when it begins, it shows who the real sniper is. You don’t go into the film wondering who did it the whole way through. I can’t say that I have ever seen something like this done before but it was something I liked. While the audience know who the real sniper is, Jack Reacher and Helen, the attorney representing Barr do not. Still though, there was the whole surprise of motives and some other things along the way.

I know many people have said they were worried about Tom Cruise being cast as Reacher, partly due to him being so small. From what I gather, in the books, Reacher is a bit of a giant of a man. Having not read the books, I can’t say that I really cared about Cruise being cast and I thought he was pretty good actually. Normally I think he comes across as arrogant and full of himself and while there were small aspects of this showing, I think it was what the character needed. Cruise also manages to deliver comedy well which is something I have very rarely seen him do.

The rest of the cast was mostly good. Rosamund Pike as Helen came over as a little too flat for my liking. I’m not sure what her character is supposed to be like but for someone taking on such a case, I expected her to have a little more fire inside her. I just didn’t feel any passion coming from her which was a shame as I think the character could have been really good. However, the bad guys in the film were fantastic. Jai Courtney plays Charlie and while he is super hot, he is also extremely bad but I loved him. He’s mean looking and brooding which made him all the better for me. The overall cast of this film is fantastic with not many of them letting the side down.

Plot wise, it was quite interesting but could have been better. There were plenty of exciting scenes but the idea behind the plot, the reason for the shootings, was extremely lacking. While the motive is explained, I felt there needed to be more. Reasons were given once realised by the characters but then nothing much happened about it. The reasons weren’t even very good in my opinion and I felt as though there either needed to be a lot more depth to the situation or the reasons needed to be used better. I hate to say that the plot was lacking because I did really enjoy the film. However, it seemed to be more about finding the motive rather than caring about the motive.

So overall, Jack Reacher was a good film but I wonder if fans of the book agree with what I thought.  

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