Despite a great lead, it’s no more than the usual big-good-evil vs the big-evil-good in Amazon Prime’s Without Remorse.
Without Remorse Synopsis
US Navy Seals Senior Chief John Kelly’s home is brutally attacked by assassins, with his pregnant wife killed during the assault. Devastated, Kelly strongarms his way into the investigations and learns that the attack is retaliation for his team massacring Russian soldiers during an earlier extraction operation in Aleppo. Kelly and his team then infiltrate Northwestern Russia to capture Victor Rykov, the ex- Spetznaz operative who headed the retaliation attempt.
I’m not a big fan of movies based on Tom Clancy books.
While I did enjoy Hunt for Red October, Patriot Games, and so on, in my younger years, I think most newer adaptations slip into the predictable. Or should I say, prescribed? Part of this brought on by the necessity to update the original stories to suit modern politics.
Oh, there’s assuredly a lot of action in these adaptations. A lot of stunts or firefights or thrilling escapes too. But after a while, don’t you feel, hmm, it’s all still about some super character holding his own against big evil governments or organisations? Isn’t there just a lot of movies along these lines nowadays? Many with equally eye-catching action?
Yeah, I’m seldom excited about Tom Clancy movies. Which I still watch anyway because there’s usually few directly competing flicks during their releases. In the case of Amazon Prime’s Without Remorse, I’d say I was a little bit more inclined to check it out because Michael B. Jordan played the lead. Jordan, IMO, an action actor well capable of incredible emotional depth amongst blood and sweat.
Let me put it this way. As expected, Jordan put up a superb performance, but not exactly the way he did in the Creed movies. I think what’s praiseworthy this time is how he manages to sustain screen appeal despite the truly dry dialogue and plot developments he had to work with. Insipid exchanges that drowned the rest of the cast.
The plot itself, which bears MINIMAL resemblance to the novel, is one flat line too. Now, there’s a twist. A “shocking” revelation too. Neither carries any real impact though because, well, that’s how things always are in such espionage movies, agree? Not to mention the events leading up to the reveal are so clunky. (I’m going to brag and say I sensed the truth before they even got to Russia)
In the end, Without Remorse is all about explosive firefights. The super-extended confrontation in Murmansk too. The latter, to the movie’s credit, mostly free of incredulous heroics.
The ending’s ending also lays a wide path for a sequel, i.e., Rainbow Six. (Big name in the gaming world, btw) But given this John Kelly is so different from the one in the games and books, I wonder whether there is anything to look forward to for TC fans.
Check out my other snappy movie reviews.