Clear and Present Danger Reviews
Jack Ryan: Go down where?
The President: Colombia.
Jack Ryan: Who, me?
After watching the two previous Tom Clancy/Jack Ryan films, which had problems in maintaining my interest in watching them, this movie finally satisfied me in many areas. Good cast, good story, and entertaining.
Harrison Ford returns as Jack Ryan, working as an analyst until he is called in by his boss, once again played by James Earl Jones, to work on a case involving the Colombian drug cartel.
While Ryan knows parts of what is going on, we know everything, a covert war is being waged against Colombian drug lords by some high ranking members of the CIA. These members have enlisted a secret black-ops agent, played by Willem Dafoe to head up a team working to take out various drug lords. An adviser of one of the drug lords, played by Joaquim de Almeida, is also heavily involved in the whole situation.
Jack Ryan is meanwhile working to try an understand the whole situation, operating as deputy director of the CIA after his boss has taken ill. Ryan is working under the President, but has to face the hard truths of sticking to his ethics.
What makes this a better movie than the previous Jack Ryan flick, Patriot Games, is its story. In Patriot Games, the film focused on one thing, revenge. Because of that, the story stretched out on plot for two hours and didn't really get anything out of it besides some confident action scenes. In this film, the story has numerous threads and characters to follow and it all works well. The film also has several well done action scenes, in particular, one involving an SUV shootout in an ally.
The cast of this movie is very welcome as well. Ford seems much more in place this time around as the Jack Ryan character. Willem Dafoe is equally good as the sort of anti-Ryan character, both standing for the same thing, but would accomplish goals differently. The rest of the cast is composed of many character actors who give the film more gravity.
There are occasional moments where action movie/tough guy dialog comes in, but it certainly makes things more enjoyable in terms of never keeping the film too serious.
All around, a smartly made political thriller/action film.
Jack Ryan: I didn't sign up for this. This is someone's bullshit political agenda. Who authorized this? Cutter?
Ritter: Cutter couldn't tie his own shoes without permission.
Jack Ryan: If I go down you're coming with me.
Ritter: Wrong again. I have an *autographed get-out-of-jail-free card*!
A well-made and exciting movie with some true edge-of-your seat moments!