BY DAVID LI
In the latest Jack Ryan film, Shadow Recruit, producers shot for heavy realism but came up short because of their inconsistent portrayal of main character Jack Ryan.
Jack (Chris Pine) starts out as a Ph.D. student that drops out of an unnamed university in London after seeing the 9/11 attack on TV. This important scene is portrayed in less than two minutes. Two years later, he is a marine on his way to Afghanistan when his helicopter is shot out of the sky by a missile. To end the story there would be a bit of a downer, so of course, he survives the crash and miraculously saves two others from his unit. Now we’re five minutes into the movie, and Jack is already in physical therapy.
After meeting the lovely med student Catherine Muller (Keira Knightley) at his rehabilitation center, Jack is soon recruited into the CIA by his soon-to-be mentor and handler Thomas Harper (Kevin Costner). The three actors’ chemistry is great, especially with Harper there to provide some comedic relief whenever there’s an opportunity to poke fun at Jack.
Though the movie isn’t flawless, it can definitely be appreciated by loyal fans of the Tom Clancy series. There are many details that came to life in the movie that were only small backstories in the books. Perhaps that was the point: to pave the way for a series of productions to come out in the future.