DVD Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit

DVD Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
DVD Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
Run time: 105 min
Rating: 6.2
Genres: Action | Mystery | Thriller
Director: Kenneth Branagh
Writers: Adam Cozad, David Koepp
Stars: Chris Pine, Kevin Costner, Keira Knightley
A new version of the saga of CIA analyst, Jack Ryan. It begins when Ryan was attending the London School of Economics; and 9/11 happened. He would then enlist in the Marines and would go to Afghanistan. The chopper he was on would get shot down and he would suffer severe injuries that would require intense rehab. While there, he grabs the attention of a man named Harper, who works for the CIA and would like him to finish his studies and get a job on Wall Street so he can find out of any terrorist plot through their finances. A few years later, Ryan finds anomalies in the accounts of a Russian named Cherevin. Jack thinks he should go to Russia to find out what’s going on. Jack was told not to tell anyone who he is and that includes his girl friend Cathy. But she catches Jack in some lies which makes her doubt him. Jack goes to Russia and Cherevin assigns him someone to take care of him. But when they’re alone the man tries to kill Jack. So Jack kills him. Obvious Cherevin is hiding … Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com
Plot Keywords: cia, analyst, terrorist, russian, economics
Country: USA, Russia
Release Date: 24 January 2014 (UK)
Box Office
Budget: $60,000,000 (estimated)
Opening Weekend: $18,034,726 (USA) (17 January 2014)
Gross: $50,549,107 (USA) (28 March 2014)


  1. Let's get the good parts out of the way first:

    – Chris Pine.

    OK, now that we got that out of the way…WHAT THE HELL, JACK RYAN SHADOW RECRUIT???

    Listen, in going over what really bothered me about this movie, I sort of have to spoil some of it. So, before I do that, let me just quickly summarize: Chris Pine proves himself as a good, maybe even great action lead, but the story is so bare-bones and straight-forward (and at times, stupid) that Pine's performance is really the only justifiable reason to watch this. Shaky cameras during fight scenes DO NOT help the cause either. (Seriously, this is such a pet peeve when it comes to action movies, why do we still deal with this?) Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit scores a 2.5 out of 5 on The BDBOS.

    Now, take this as your warning: BEYOND THIS POINT WILL BE SPOILERS. READ AT YOUR OWN RISK.

    Show of hands…how many of you guys out there have seen the trailer for this movie? The trailer hints at – and by "hints at", I mean "beats you over the head with" – the idea that no one can be trusted. Specifically, the trailer shows Keira Knightley's character (Jack Ryan's love interest) apparently betraying Jack. The trailer also shows Kevin Costner's character (Jack's mentor and superior) aiming at Jack through the scope of a sniper rifle. Even the movie poster has the tag line "Trust No One". So, you'd figure going in that you're in for some serious double-crossing and not knowing who's on Jack's side, right?


    Literally, there is NO DOUBLE-CROSSING WHAT-SO-EVER in this movie. The good guys from the beginning stay good the whole way through. Same with the bad guys. As a matter of fact, there are way more people in this movie you CAN TRUST than there are of the opposite. Apparently, the "trust no one" warning was meant for the villain, since he's the only one that gets deceived in any way. The line should have been "Trust no one…if you're a terrorist."

    Still not sure who to trust? There's another easy way to figure out who's good and bad in this movie, and all you need is this simple equation: American=good. Not American=bad. Again, a better tag line would have been "Trust no one…unless they speak perfect English without any foreign accent."

    Now, some questions…

    – If you're an assassin, and you're only job is to kill this guy…shouldn't you be killing the guy at your first opportunity? Or your second? Or third? And not HOURS LATER, after the guy learns that you're carrying a gun?

    – If you're a different assassin, and you've already used your trademark knife to kill a few other people…where was your knife when you had to fight the hero? Who was UNARMED during the fight???

    – If you've had severe spinal surgery, and went through months of intense rehab just to be able to walk again…and, for argument's sake, you're on a speeding motorcycle that SLAMS into the side of a van…how are you then able to get up, walk away, and continue to chase the bad guy???

    – Will they let ANYONE into your hotel room if they simply claim to be your wife? Without ANY sort of proof??

    – Is Jack Ryan the SMARTEST PERSON EVER??? Because everyone else in the CIA seem like morons.

    – How many people did they send to Moscow for this mission??? It seemed like there were 47 people on the street that were all in on the operation, and yet the inexperienced financial officer who had reconstructive spinal surgery and never killed anyone is the guy they send in for ALL the dirty work.

    Listen, with action movies, you're often asked to suspend disbelief for the sake of enjoyment, but Shadow Recruit took too many liberties for my liking. And, after all the promotion for the film, I left the theater wondering if I saw the right movie. "Trust no one…except everyone."

    Chris Pine, this wasn't your fault.

    2.5 out of 5. Pass on it.

    (Hey guys, thanks for checking out my review. If you enjoyed it – or even a tiny bit of it – then perhaps you'd enjoy checking out my little page over at facebook.com/TheBDBOS. Movie reviews, news, chat, even the occasional free ticket giveaway. All on your news feed. Stop by and say wussup!)

  2. In 2002 the underwhelming The Sum of All Fears – with Ben Affleck in the lead role – put the Ryan franchise in the morgue. 12 years on and the famous CIA analyst is back on the big screen with a brand new story and a fresh face. Perhaps they should've waited another dozen years, as this reboot is utterly forgettable and offers nothing in the way of originality or inventiveness. The action has no pulse, the plot is straight out of 1980 and there's no thriller element to keep you guessing as the "Trust No One" tagline on the poster would suggest; which is all a shock when you consider Kenneth Branagh was at the helm and his last effort Thor, was such a gleefully entertaining motion picture. It also doesn't help that the latest incarnation of Jack Ryan, as portrayed by Chris Pine, has about as much charisma as a tree. Keira Knightley, Kevin Costner and Branagh are serviceable as love interest, mentor and villain respectively, however there's little any of them can do to boost the excitement levels. It's not a bad movie per se, just a run- of-the-mill affair you'll struggle to remember after the end credits.

  3. Very entertaining ride, but disappointing when put against the early Harrison Ford/Baldwin Jack Ryan films which took the subject matter more seriously and were not as ridiculously CSI-Miami-ish like this one is. Also they focused on his cunning and did not pretend he could transform in moments from geek analyst to James Bond in Hulk-like speed.

    Here are my gripes with this movie

    1) The infamous Hollywood cliché checklist: 9/11 Terror imagery? Check. Boogeymen Russians even though the cold war ended decades ago? Check. Ticking time bomb as opposed to a device that just blows up instantly via remote? Check. Name-dropping the latest internet social networks? Check. 2) We are meant to believe that a brilliant CIA analyst working on top secret national security projects is unable to hide something as benign as a movie ticket from a super secret meeting with another "covert" agent? 3) The CIA just runs around Moscow shooting off guns, speeding through streets, and clearing corpses from hotel rooms? Really? 4) A plot point is that one terrorist had someone take photos of a downtown city area for reconnaissance. As if there is not enough free, untrackable stock images available from google maps and other websites that show every square inch of every American city. Taking traceable photos of a building is pointless in the new internet age. 5) Keira Knightley's annoying face and whining. 6) The CIA leaving national security up to a CIA analyst who was activated by accident and his wife who didn't know he was working for the CIA. 7) A CIA analyst who only spent a few months in battle-training suddenly sneaking around like James Bond. 8) A pushing 60 Kevin Costner trying to be believable sneaking around like James Bond in skull caps. Also, Kevin Costner needed something else to do in this film other than just being Kevin Costner. He was a generic character with no impact on the stakes or overall climax. 9) We don't learn much about the main character besides the usual Hollywood cliché nonsense of him being a "Patriotic, Heroic, Genius, Faithful husband" American that has no flaws and of course was a Veteran who for some reason knows everything. In the Harrison Ford films at least we saw him at CIA headquarters and interacting with bureaucrats, etc. This film was like an episode of 24. 10) OK it's a movie, but the convenience of how many times these main characters happen to be in the right/wrong place at the right/wrong time is absolutely ridiculous. Not to mention the entire premise of the film relies on layers and layers of coincidences that all depend on Jack Ryan's life following an exact script in order to find out the terror plan, the perpetrators, and save the day. 11) The Russian villain suddenly realizes Jack Ryan is a history buff simply because Jack Ryan knows the name of a painting? Come on now. Where were the exchanges in Russian to show his linguistic skills? Just, OH, you know the name of this painting, therefore, audience, this guy is a historian.

    But overall an entertaining film, however generic and should have just been named something else, not related to Tom Clancy. Absurd but fun.

  4. It's ironic that "Jack Ryan" is part of the title for this one because this is the furthest from the character that any of the films have been. Beyond a some what similar back-story, the doctor soon to be wife, and that he works for the CIA, Ryan is not Ryan. They turn him more into a spy/field agent than the brainy analyst that he's meant to be. As a result, there is nothing in this movie that makes it stand out from the rest of it's genre. It's just another spy movie with an over the top villain that's plotting world domination. It's predictable and generic. They sacrificed what made the Jack Ryan character unique.

    I'm not saying that the movie didn't work as some Bond/Bourne/Mission Impossible wannabe with bits and pieces slapped together from every spy thriller ever made. It captured successful elements from those films pretty well. It's just a shame that they relied on recycling tired and over used narrative when there is still a bunch of great Ryan books that they have yet to adapt. There should be no reason to slap together this films story when a much more talented writer like Clancy still has more stories to draw from. I agree with Peter Travers comment "It's a product constructed out of spare parts and assembled with computerized precision."

    Despite following a predictable formula very closely instead of the source material, the movie still works as entertainment. Chris Pine is great, despite the writers failing him, and he really carries the movie. He could be a great Jack Ryan if they actually wrote the character correctly. Branagh delivers a pretty good villain, even though he's more suited for a Bond film. There are a couple of scenes that deliver good suspense. It's just not a Jack Ryan movie. It seems that they only used Jack Ryan for the brand name rather than faithfully trying to tell a story about him.

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