The least you should expect from a Tom Cruise action flick is a bit of mediocre escapism. Depressingly, Jack Reacher doesn’t even live up to minimal expectations, leaving behind a wooden and prolonged piece of cinema lacking energy or inspiration.
I couldn’t care less if Cruise doesn’t stand tall against the six foot, ex-police soldier Jack Reacher from the novels. What matters is he forms a mind-numbingly tedious action hero, devoid of charisma. His co-star Rosamund Pike is equally vacuous as the lawyer who teams up with the allusive Reacher to try and get to the bottom of a sniper attack. The relationship between Cruise and Pike is flatter than a pancake, not aided by the writing and direction of Christopher McQuarrie who is completely uninspired and fails to add thrills to the action. The bizarre casting of the scenery chewing Werner Herzog comes closest to offering the film anything close to a redeeming quality which is otherwise tedious from beginning to end.
Reacher comes across as an insipid know-it-all. “Right now I’m 3 miles from a bus station, which means I can walk there in 24 minutes” – leave it out, no one cares. For such inanity he deserves every punch he dishes out. The dialogue saps out any semblance of style or wit leaving behind a dry, bland and utterly forgettable ordeal. It’s unnecessarily long for absolutely no reason, showcsiIf it wasn’t Christmas, there’s no way this film would have found the goodwill it has managed.
Whenever this film was released, it simply wouldn’t be up to par. But as a side note, considering the US release was delayed by a week because of the Sandy Hook tragedy, it still feels far too soon for a film which begins with a senseless sniper taking down innocent victims, including children. A languid piece of cinema and tasteless as well.
Review by David Rank
Jack Reacher is out now in the UK and US. Certificate 12A (UK). Running time 130 mins.
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