Review: 'Jack Reacher: Never Go Back' to a Jack Reacher Movie

Jayme Coveliers ’20 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer
In a world vibrant with sequels and remakes, Jack Reacher: Never Go Back seems to be right at home as an action flick with little to no substance.
Tom Cruise returns as the title character, Jack Reacher, a former Army Major who has now been discharged so he can travel the country serving out his own form of justice. During which, he calls Major Turner (Cobie Smulders), telling her of his escapades. However, before he can meet her, she’s falsely accused and is wrapped up in a thinly veiled plot by a gun manufacturer for the US government.

Tom Cruise in Jack Reacher: Never Go Back. Photo Courtesy of Paramount Pictures.
The characters’ flimsy motivations prohibit any sort of investment on part of the audience. Jack Reacher has absolutely no attributes or characteristics other than the fact that Tom Cruise is the one who is portraying him. Cruise, on top of that, gives a flat and uninteresting performance as the leading man in the film. Smulders offers no support as the female edge to Cruise, and adding 17-year-old Danika Yarosh makes the film almost completely unenjoyable to watch. In a chance to get a bright and fun young actor to add some life to the movie, Yarosh gives a boring and borderline annoying performance throughout the film.
The writing of the film is clearly just a string of events for action scenes to take place, but, unfortunately, lack just as much engagement as the rest of the film. Scenes feature Cruise dodging bullets in and around a car, or fighting men in a warehouse. This lack of creativity or imaginative sequences floods the completely forgettable film.
Tom Cruise in Jack Reacher: Never Go Back
Tom Cruise in Jack Reacher: Never Go Back. Photo Courtsey of Paramount Pictures.
It’s hard to talk in depth about this film, because, at the end of the day, it’s just average. It is the result of a studio trying to make a film they know will have some box office draw, hence the casting of Tom Cruise and Cobie Smulders, so they can make some quick cash. However, this paint-by-the-numbers film doesn’t come off as entertaining in the slightest because of precisely that. Films that inspire and elate are not ones that play by the rules, they are films that take chances, try new things, and make the characters interesting and relatable to the audience. This is very basic film logic that the movie fails to grasp, and, in the end, that’s what makes it hard to sit through.
Overall Grade: D-
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