False Advertising: A Movie Review

Last Wednesday I went to watch Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit. And I didn't want to... because I had seen this...

So I watched that trailer and thought "looks like an average action movie".

They didn't sell it to me, at all. And I LIKE action movies. I grew up on action movies. I could blame it on having an older brother, but truth be told I'm just a tomboy. Big guns, explosions, car chases, mission impossible style feats? Where do I sign up?

But this trailer, it just made the movie look like something that would get lost in the movie releases this year and would silently make its way out of cinemas and onto dvds and blu rays... which is a shame...

Because, WELL... turns out I was glad that I didn't pick the movie. I was glad that I'd gone along and watched Jack Ryan. Because THAT the movie that they're selling in that trailer? That isn't the movie you'll get to see. The movie you'll actually watch is better in many, many ways.

First of all, no one told me it was directed by Kenneth Branagh. This alone would have sold me the movie. I loved his Much Ado About Nothing and Hamlet whilst growing up, and Thor and Iron Man 2 are amongst my geek favourites.

Chris Pine is lovely, and so's Kevin Costner (that man is getting hotter by the year, am I right?). And I'd originally thought that Chris Pine would have to carry the movie, that the script wouldn't hold up, that the plot holes would most likely be able to house an entire village and that by the end I'd be wishing someone got blown up. Instead I found that the script was intelligent. Original, as far as any of these movies can be, but then, it is based on a character from a book, which gives it plus points. Believable, when he struggles, you see struggle, internal and external, and it pulls at your heart strings. And compelling, not something you expect from an action movie. The exchanges between Pine and Costner were fantastic, plus, Costner steals a dog.

So why was this worth watching? It was pleasurable. It had action that was genuinely realistic, and not all fake high kicks and cool back-flips where everyone walks away at the end of the scene. The characters breathed, by which I mean that they felt real, like your really good looking next door neighbours. Really, really good looking next door neighbours. But still people whose lives you could relate to.

Yes, all the scenes in the movie are in the trailer. But the trailer tricks you. The "you can't trust those closest to you" made me think there'd be a twist, and his fiancée would be a spy and that she'd back stab him. Boring. Over done. Not done, thankfully, in the actual movie. Not even a little bit.

Why this film struck me so much, however, was because it was so badly advertised. That trailer takes false advertising and wears it as a hat it tries to pawn off to unsuspecting tourists. Usually a trailer will make a bad movie look good, make us buy tickets and sit through 96 minutes of torture before we leave the theatre grumbling about how "the trailer showed all the good bits". This movie has suffered, in my opinion, from the opposite. It was a good movie, with a really bad sales pitch. Put that onto your book's blurb and you'll fail to make any sales, no matter how many cool people you say are in it. Hopefully people will go see the movie anyway, because they recognise the high quality names in the movie, the calibre of the acting was superb. Because I think the movie does deserve praise, for being a great example of a well written, well produced, well directed and well acted action movie. One of the best I've seen in years. Yes, even better than that last Die Hard movie...

And don't worry, at the end there is a big explosion...

And a bit of romance...


Popular posts from this blog

Action vs Adventure or I'm a die hard Princess Bride fan