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Archive for the ‘Ann Archer’ Category

clearandpresentdangerThis movie is the third in the Tom Clancy based novels released in the late 80’s early 90’s and the second with Harrison Ford starring as main hero Jack Ryan.  Between this movie, the other Harrison Ford movie, Patriot Games, and the first one, The Hunt For Red October, Clear and Present Danger is the worst of the three movies but for this particular series that isn’t a bad thing.  This movie was fun and easy to follow and to watch.  In fact I seem to like it more now than when I watched it at the movie theater 20 years ago.  As much as I like this movie now the fact of the matter is that the thing I hated 20 years ago is still the thing I hate now, the ending blows.  Now that I am wiser I can say that I have a decent idea on how to end the film but it only would make the ending less sucky but not good.

In the third installment of Tom Clancy’s movies based around the character Jack Ryan, played by Harrison Ford (Star Wars,) Ryan has rejoined the CIA working for Deputy Director Admiral James Greer, played by James Earl Jones (Conan The Barbarian,) who has asked Ryan to investigate the murder of an American businessman on board a yacht in the Caribbean Sea.  Ryan discovers that the businessman is a close personal friend of President Bennett, played by Donald Moffat (The Thing,) and tells the President during a debriefing that his friend was laundering money for a Colombian Cartel.  Angry that his friend is murdered by the cartel, he unofficially authorizes his Chief of Staff James Cutter, played by Harris Yulin (Murder at 1600,) to have the CIA conduct a covert illegal paramilitary operation against the cartel.  Cutter asks the CIA Deputy Director of Operations Robert Ritter, played by Henry Czerny (Mission: Impossible,) to organize the operation and to also keep all information about the operation away from Ryan, who was promoted to Admiral Greer’s position as he is hospitalized with cancer.  As operations get underway under the leadership of former CIA agent John Clark, played by Willem Defoe (John Wick,) the Cartel leader Ernesto Escobar, played by Miguel Sandoval (Mrs. Winterbourne,) and his assistant Felix Cortez, played by Joaquim de Almeida (Behind Enemy Lines,) try to figure out who is involved.  When Cortez discovers that it is the US military he takes advantage of the situation to coerce Cutter to sacrifice the troops there and in exchange he will eliminate Escobar.

It’s funny every time that I saw the movie poster on Amazon Prime or Netflix I would frown because my memory of the movie is always negative.  I owned the VHS when I was younger but then I worked at the video store of the grocery store I worked it but then again I owned lots of movies because I got them cheap.  And yet I don’t know why I feel this way because when I started watching the film I was almost immediately engaged in the film.  The story jumps right into the meat of the plot in that the US President, angry over the death of his friend, wants to make the cartels pay for this action.  The writers do a great job of setting up the different levels of conflict between the multiple characters in the film and not just between the US and the cartels but also the conflict between Ritter and Ryan and how Ritter and Cutter try to keep Ryan from finding out about the military operation.  For 135 minutes the movie from a story point of view was great.  However, the movie is 141 minutes long, and the reason for the bad taste in my mouth when I think of this movie is the final five minutes.  As I have said I hate the ending of the movie.  See what happens is Ryan makes it back to the US from rescuing the remaining troops in Columbia and confronts the President about his actions and I was hoping for a smack down on him.  I wanted Ryan to leave that office with the President knowing that he was not only wrong but a broken man for what he did.  That didn’t happen.  It was a very tame and Ryan was very respectful in telling the President he was screwed.  It just left me sad.  Then we get to the part that really pisses me off.  I haven’t read the book but if the book ends the same why I would be pissed as well.  What happens in the movie is that after the non-confrontation confrontation with the President, the film goes to Ryan walking into a room full of press as he is about to give his testimony to the Congressional committee and after he takes the oath, Ryan sits down and the credits roll.  That is the end of the film.  For me that is a horrible way to end the film.  I know we know the story of what he is going to tell the committee but just having the credits roll just was just a killer of what had been an exciting movie.  It gave me the impression that everything the President had told Ryan during their confrontation (he said that Ryan would take the bulk of the blame and the rest of it would fall on Adm. Greer) was actually going to happen.  That pisses me off.  When I first saw this movie I had no idea how to end it without watching some testimony which would have taken to long.  What the director should have done is while the scene fades out to have it written out what happened after the meeting so at least we know.  But the movie fades to end credits and we don’t know what happens and that just ruins the rest of the movie.  As I write this I am actually getting upset that this ending ruins this movie.  Moving on.

As I said before I enjoyed the story up to the ending.  I am surprised by this because being a child of the 80’s and the Cold War my movie bad guys should always be those bastard Communists but in the early and mid 90’s our spy heroes were fighting drug cartels because the Communists bastards had lost the Cold War.  So I usually don’t enjoy movies where the bad guys are drug cartels.  But this movie works because even though the bad guy is the drug cartel it is more the President and his team running the illegal war.  The other thing that I liked about the story is that it kept me engaged even though you knew who the bad guys were and basically we were along for the ride that was watching Ryan figure out who is doing what to who and when.  To me it is impressive when you are watching a detective movie when you know the answer and you are left watching the good guy solve the puzzle and it is still entertaining.

The action was good as well even though I feel that his movie has the least amount of action of the three movies.  The best action scene in the movie is when the drug lord’s lieutenant sets a trap to kill Director of the FBI, who is visiting Bogata Colombia, while Ryan is there doing research.  The entire action see is very nice and very intense.  It’s funny in that I said the action was good but for the most part there isn’t a lot of action its’ just very intense for what little there is.  I will give this an asterisk however in that I would have like to see Ryan kill the Cortez because to me that is the rule that the main bad guy get killed by the good guy but he was busy escaping so the killing was left to one of the remaining soldiers.  I guess its ok that the soldier gets some revenge but it still breaks one of my rules but I can live with it.

clear-and-present-danger-henry-czerny

I can talk about how awesome Harrison Ford is but lets face it, he is Harrison Ford so he is always awesome.  But I enjoyed the entire cast and thought there were no real weaknesses in it.  I thought that of the rest Henry Czerny as Ritter was the best.  He does a good political/government guy in general be it good or bad.  To see a good version watch Mission: Impossible.  Also want to give a shout out to James Earl Jones because he was in this movie again and his death was sad for me because he is Darth Vader and that is sad when he dies.

I enjoyed this political thriller a lot but the ending just kills it for me.  This is an entertaining film and is very much worth watching if you haven’t seen if for nothing else other than watching the badass that is Harrison Ford.  As of the time of this review he is 74 years old and we need to start celebrating his greatness as time moves forward.  So please watch more of his movies.

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man of the houseI have to be honest this movie really isn’t that good. The plot is so-so; there is no character development what-so-ever, lots of second stories and sub-plots started but never resolved, and it was pretty cheesy.  However, there are 5 hot girls wearing hardly anything and dancing and jumping a lot and of course Tommy Lee Jones is quite humorous playing the stone faced cop.  I like this movie, but it’s not good.

The story is about this Texas Ranger named Roland Sharp, played by Tommy Lee Jones (JFK,) who is protecting five cheerleaders from the University of Texas who witnessed a murder of an informant of Sharp’s who was to testify against some big powerful loser guy.  The girls all live in a house together and Roland moves in until the guy who shot the informant is caught.  So begins the tangled web of five modern girls living with an old fashioned house mother who has a gun.

The best scene in the movie is when the six of them are at the dinner table and the girls are eating their health food while Sharp is eating the pizza he ordered.  This is the funniest part of the movie.  The banter between the girls and Sharp is written well and Tommy Lee Jones deadpan delivery of his lines, similar to his character in the movie The Fugitive, is what makes this scene work and the rest of the movie bearable to watch.  The last scene where there was a Texas-Western-style showdown was also kind of cool, in a haven’t-seen-it-in-a-long-time sort of way.

The five girls who played the cheerleaders were all quite beautiful.  However, Hillary Swank will not have to worry about competing for future best actress awards with any of them.  The cheerleaders were all very stereo-typically written and that made them enjoyable to watch physically, but annoying to watch when they spoke.  The most enjoyable were Evie, played by Monica Keena (Freddy vs. Jason,) and Anne, played by Christina Milan (Be Cool.)  The other three weren’t bad, but I enjoyed those two the most.

The problems I had were quite obvious.  Many sub-plots were started but never finished were never developed, just wham bam thank you mam.  Just to name a few: 1.) Roland started a relationship with a teacher, Molly, played by Anne Archer (Patriot Games) and all though it was finished, it went from a “Who are you?” to a “Let’s get married” in about five movie minutes.  2.)  One of the girls was a horrible student and committed academic fraud by copy the professor’s 20 year old paper and turning it in as her own.  Instead of getting kicked out, which would have happened, she is told to write her own paper.  We do not get to see any of the struggles or the success of the writing of the paper or the joy of getting a good grade.  We just get to see her say she can’t do it, Tommy Lee Jones tell her about the book, leaving it for him to read, and Jones saying yeah it’s a good story.  I know I am thinking too much for what is essentially a Tits and Ass movie, but it seemed like the director and writer didn’t even try to make it work.

Stephen Hereck directed the story, (dir. Rockstar,) did nothing wrong by letting Tommy Lee be Tommy Lee, but did nothing right by letting the story be too long in some spots and to choppy in others.  The scriptwriters Robert Ramsey, Matthew Stone, and John Mclaughlin (Intolerable Cruelty,) did a horrible job in writing this story.  There was no continuity and nothing was finished or it was finished to fast.  Maybe this was the editor’s fault but I doubt it.  These men should be forced to sit through 1000 showings of the musical Rent for penance.

This movie is not good, but because we get to see lots of jiggling and Tommy Lee Jones being funny I liked.  So go ahead and watch it for that, but for nothing else.

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