Movie Review #3987 JACK REACHER : NEVER GO BACK.
Further installment of Lee Child's tough guy Jack Reacher with Tom Cruise again in hot seat.
Fairly routine play out has Jack coming to the aid of a military police major he hasn't actually met but has been working with in solving cases across the country. Finding her accused of espionage, Jack encounters all sorts of skullduggery and shenanigans while negotiating corrupt sheriffs, 15yr old blondes, past indiscretions and a bunch of other tough guys of the bad variety.
The usual fight routines, lots of gun fire and trying to stay one step ahead of the enemy along with a healthy dose of other all-been-done-befores leave this effort lacking originality and the storyline being somewhat predictable, leads to a certain tedium 3/4 the way through.
Cast is Cruise plus a bunch of pretty much also-rans and unknowns and there are no real stand out performances as such. Problem is with Tom that no matter the character he is playing, it's always Top Gun's Maverick grinning through. That said, it is reasonably entertaining and as an action thriller to kill a few hours it's not such a bad way, as long as expectations are not too high.
Movie Review #3975 THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN.
Yet another remake, this time of the classic western of the same name that starred many of the 60s he-men including Steve McQueen, Yul Brynner, James Coburn & Charles Bronson. This iteration puts Denzel Washington in the lead saddle with Chris Pratt and Ethan Hawke sidekicking along plus didn't recognise Vincent D'Onofrio as my namesake Jack Horne, a hefty tracker who, despite his size proves to be a lean, mean killing machine, well at least mean anyway.
Characters are different but the story is the same; poor, honest farmers and townsfolk are terrorised by a nasty land barron who wants all their land for himself and uses his henchmen to dispense persuasion to those who resist. Local widow enlists the aid of Mr Washington to put together a band of tough misfits to counter said evil dude and rid him from their presence.
Lotsa shooting, stabbing, machine gunning, tomahawking, slashing, blowing up and poking however precious little actual plasma, a pleasant surprise in this day and age plus hardly any really bad words.
Denzel does the star turn well and Ethan Hawke plays out nicely a battle-shocked marksman who has lost his nerve for killing. The customary oriental, Indian and Mexican cohorts complete the the magnificent package although I should probably not succumb to a spoiler by revealing that not all seven make it out alive, needless to say the sequel will be something like the Magnificent <7.
Overall, a good quality, rip roaring, old fashioned western and a solid 8.5/10.
I'm a movie nut from way back with my first ever being The Hallelujah Trail from 1964. Ever since, I've been mesmerized by the giant screen, and the darkness that went on forever. Despite the infernally uncomfortable seats, (plus having to stand for God Save the Queen), I've been enticed ever since to duck into a theatre whenever I can for a few hours of escapism.