Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 38 Old 05-19-2014, 07:48 AM - Thread Starter
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Jack Ryan, as a young covert CIA analyst, uncovers a Russian plot to crash the U.S. economy with a terrorist attack.




The Review at a Glance:
(max score: 5 )

Film:

Extras:

Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )

89



Details:

Studio and Year: Paramount - 2014
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 105 minutes
Genre: Crime/Action

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Resolution: 1080p/24

Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, French/Spanish/Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish, French, Portuguese
Starring: Chris Pine, Kevin Coster, Keira Knightley, Kenneth Branagh
Directed by: Kenneth Branagh
Music by: Patrick Doyle
Written by: Adam Cozad & David Koepp
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: June 10, 2014


"Trust no one…"


My Take:


CIA recruit Jack Ryan (Chris Pine) is caught in a dangerous web of intrigue and espionage spun between shadowy government agent Harper (Kevin Costner), his unsuspecting fiancée (Keira Knightly) and a fearless Russian power broker (Kenneth Branagh). Jack is recruited by Harper after displaying excellent intelligence gathering skills and extreme bravery/heroism as a young Marine lieutenant. What starts out as a “simple” covert analyst’s job on Wall Street quickly evolves into something much deeper and dangerous when Jack uncovers a devastating terrorist plot against the United States. When he travels to Russia to access the financial source at its heart things escalate and is summarily informed “you’re not just an analyst anymore, you’re now operational”. The stakes have never been higher…

I am a fan of the Jack Ryan character however my perspective rests solely on the film adaptations beginning with “The Hunt for Red October”. I really like the Harrison Ford Jack Ryan series and although I looked forward to this reboot of the Jack Ryan character now played by Chris Pine the trailer didn’t inspire me to venture out to the theater to see it. This original story which begins with a young Jack Ryan follows him from 9/11, through his tour of duty in Afghanistan, which scarred him forever, and into his early days in the Financial Intelligence Unit of the modern CIA where he becomes an analyst, under the guardianship of his handler, Harper (Kevin Costner). The script, penned by David Koepp and Adam Cozard, is briskly paced which leaves certain elements of the plot open to interpretation and in some cases noticeably missing.

For a Jack Ryan thriller the development of the narrative and characters is shallower than I would have liked. This gave the film a derivative essence that I wouldn’t classify as deleterious but more as obvious. There are some very good moments of suspense and the action is about what you’d expect from a Jack Ryan film and is fun to watch. The choice of Chris Pine to play the role of Jack was a good one. I think he holds up well compared to Alec Baldwin and coincides nicely with Harrison Ford’s portrayal of Jack at an older age. Kevin Costner is as good as he always is although there wasn’t much depth to his character here. I didn’t feel that Keira Knightley was right for this role given the way the character was written. Her chemistry with Chris Pine was less than engaging although again to be fair there really wasn’t much meat here.

The 105 minute runtime and brisk pacing kept things moving which was a good thing, considering the scope of the storyline. As someone that tends to enjoy spy/espionage thrillers I found Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit to be moderately lacking but enjoyable. I would suggest viewing it with reserved expectations as going in with high hopes might be disappointing.


Parental Guide:

The rating is for sequences of violence and intense action and brief strong language.


AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100/EXCELLENT = 83-91/GOOD = 74-82/AVERAGE = 65-73/BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**



Audio: 90
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Dynamics:
  • Low frequency effects:
  • Surround Sound presentation:
  • Clarity/Detail:
  • Dialogue Reproduction:
  • Low frequency extension * (non-rated element):


Video: 88
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity:
  • Black Level/Shadow Detail:
  • Color Reproduction:
  • Fleshtones:
  • Compression:


Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit comes to Blu-ray Disc from Paramount Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 31 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 3.8 Mbps.

This high definition presentation was on par with other new release films of its type and generally looked great. Colors were natural looking with a pleasing and reserved quality that capably handled the somewhat limited palette used to represent the period settings and clothing featured in the film. Flesh tones varied a bit with some appearing warm and lifelike while others were sullen with pallid characteristics. Contrast was tamped down but stable and images were well detailed and crisp, with sharp lines and appreciable dimension. Blacks weren’t inky but had good dynamic range and detail in shadowy backgrounds and low level sequences had estimable visibility which enhanced depth. This high bitrate encoding was rendered cleanly and didn’t exhibit any overt signs of compression related anomalies or deleterious artifacts.

The 7.1 channel DTS-HD MA surround mix delivers the soundtrack’s elements with aplomb. The higher fidelity inherent in this lossless audio presentation is readily apparent. Dynamic range is noteworthy which renders the film’s action based sequences with defining impact and energy. Dialogue is presented with crystal clear intonation, full bodied texture, and deep room penetration. Patrick Doyle’s music score is open and rewardingly spread over the listening area. Imaging across the front soundstage is excellent as sounds are integrated with precision. This can be an involving surround mix that engagingly utilizes the entire system where appropriate. Low frequency detail is clean, articulated and deep as points of contact resonate with palpable impact. This isn’t a bombastic or overly aggressive soundtrack but its blend of intricate detail and room filling dynamics make for an excellent home theater experience.

Bonus Features:
  • Audio commentary by Kenneth Branagh & producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura
  • (HD) Jack Ryan: The smartest guy in the room – 13 minute featurette
  • (HD) Sir Kenneth Branagh: The Tsar of Shadow Recruit – 9 minute featurette
  • (HD) Jack Ryan: A thinking man of action – 5 minute featurette
  • (HD) Old enemies return – 21 minute documentary
  • (HD) Deleted/extended scenes with optional filmmaker commentary
  • Bonus DVD
  • Ultraviolet Digital Copy



Final Thoughts:

Based on the popular character created by bestselling author Tom Clancy, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit is a global action thriller set in the present day that reboots the film franchise via a modestly engaging script that would have benefited from better developed story. It comes to Blu-ray from Paramount Home Entertainment featuring solid high definition video, excellent lossless surround sound and a fair supplemental package that is worth checking out. I am not certain if there will be a follow up to Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit but for those that enjoy the genre there is certainly enough merit in its release on Blu-ray to make it worth seeing.





Ralph Potts
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post #2 of 38 Old 05-19-2014, 09:25 AM
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There are some actors that just "nail" the person they are portraying. Matt Damon as Jason Bourne was so perfect and after those 3, could anyone else pulled it off?? No. That's how I see Harrison Ford's Jack Ryan. Didn't like Affleck as Ryan and really can't picture "Pretty Boy" Pine as the gritty Jack Ryan. Really wish they would have ran the gammit on Clancy Novels in the 90's with Ford. Sum of All Fears was my favorite book and one of the worst movies for me. I might give this a run if I am bored, but Pine just doesn't fit this mold for me.

Thanks as always for the review Ralph!
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post #3 of 38 Old 05-20-2014, 06:16 PM
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Thanks for the review! I'm real excited to see this. Gunna rent it first than decide wether to buy or not after. I love these types of movies tho!

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post #4 of 38 Old 05-22-2014, 06:19 AM
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I know they want to make the story line more relevant to current times, but it just doesn't make sense to me that Jack Ryan would have been young during 9/11 and have been stationed in the current Afganistan conflict.  Are we supposed to believe that the story lines for the Patriot Games (which is set during the conflict in Northern Ireland) and Hunt for Red October (clearly before the breakup of the Soviet Union) are supposed to take place after this film?  Wouldn't it make more sense if they had based this story on the original Jack Ryan's son?

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post #5 of 38 Old 05-22-2014, 09:19 PM
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It's a reboot of the franchise and those other things have never happened. This is a "New" Jack Ryan for a different time. Kind of like Daniel Craig's James Bond films.

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post #6 of 38 Old 05-23-2014, 09:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

It's a reboot of the franchise and those other things have never happened. This is a "New" Jack Ryan for a different time. Kind of like Daniel Craig's James Bond films.

That sells it for me! Gonna get this! cool.gif
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post #7 of 38 Old 05-23-2014, 09:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

It's a reboot of the franchise and those other things have never happened. This is a "New" Jack Ryan for a different time. Kind of like Daniel Craig's James Bond films.

 

That makes more sense.  Obviously I haven't read any of the "Shadow Recruit" novels from Tom Clancy.  I have read most of the older ones such as Patriot Games, Hunt for Red October, Clear and Present Danger, Cardinal in the Kremlin, and Sum of All Fears.  I've also read some of his books that have nothing to do with Jack Ryan such as Red Storm Rising and the newer Splinter Cell and End War series.

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post #8 of 38 Old 05-23-2014, 09:24 AM
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My dogs take runny dumps more memorable and interesting than this film

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post #9 of 38 Old 05-23-2014, 10:21 AM
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My dogs take runny dumps more memorable and interesting than this film


Well, I wouldnt go that far...but if I had to sum up this movie the word I would use would be 'forgettable'.
Patriot Games and Hunt for Red October I just loved, Clear and Present Danger was very good, Sum of all Fears and Shadow recruit were....well,...forgettable.

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post #10 of 38 Old 05-23-2014, 10:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Taranteacher View Post

That sells it for me! Gonna get this! cool.gif

I'm not saying that this is as good as Craig's Bond films...I'm saying its a reboot like those films were...a fresh start to the story. I have this one sitting on my desk and plan on watching it over the weekend.

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post #11 of 38 Old 05-23-2014, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

I'm not saying that this is as good as Craig's Bond films...I'm saying its a reboot like those films were...a fresh start to the story. I have this one sitting on my desk and plan on watching it over the weekend.

No, don't get me wrong, I am no way comparing it, as that would set my expectations way up high, and good ol' Ralph has made it clear I should dial the hopes a few notches down. Thx ralph! wink.gif
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post #12 of 38 Old 05-23-2014, 10:36 PM
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Ralph...just finished watching it. I agree with your A/V assessment, but I actually liked the movie and found it very entertaining. It isn't the Jack Ryan I grew up with (read Clancy's first book when I was in High School), but entertaining nonetheless.

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post #13 of 38 Old 05-24-2014, 07:52 AM
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Gave this Blu-ray A spin earlier this week,
Thought Jack Ryan was quite good but wasn't in the league of say Jason Born films smile.gif
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post #14 of 38 Old 05-24-2014, 12:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

Ralph...just finished watching it. I agree with your A/V assessment, but I actually liked the movie and found it very entertaining. It isn't the Jack Ryan I grew up with (read Clancy's first book when I was in High School), but entertaining nonetheless.

Greetings,

Roger that Dave. I liked it as well although from the sounds of it not quite as much as you....smile.gif


Thanks for chiming in buddy. cool.gif


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post #15 of 38 Old 05-24-2014, 01:47 PM
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I'd give it 3.5 stars wink.gif

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post #16 of 38 Old 05-26-2014, 04:42 AM
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I picked this up today, looking forward in watching this tonight

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post #17 of 38 Old 05-26-2014, 12:35 PM - Thread Starter
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I picked this up today, looking forward in watching this tonight


Greetings,


Great! Looking forward to hearing your thoughts Frank... smile.gif



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post #18 of 38 Old 05-27-2014, 08:26 AM
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Greetings,


Great! Looking forward to hearing your thoughts Frank... smile.gif



Regards,

I actually enjoyed this one Ralph. I thought Chris Pine did a great job. Thanks for review !!
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post #19 of 38 Old 05-27-2014, 10:30 AM
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I actually enjoyed this one Ralph. I thought Chris Pine did a great job. Thanks for review !!

Great to read it, Frank! Just needed that extra nudge, mate! cool.gif

One of the reasons I wanted to get this was I like Chris Pine's work. Also, I'd already prepped myself not to judge it against past Jack Ryan films, and rather think of it as a Jack Ryan for newer generations...
Plus, if Pine can do a great Kirk, why not a decent Ryan, eh? One man's opinion, of course... wink.gif
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post #20 of 38 Old 05-27-2014, 11:19 PM
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Great to read it, Frank! Just needed that extra nudge, mate! cool.gif

One of the reasons I wanted to get this was I like Chris Pine's work. Also, I'd already prepped myself not to judge it against past Jack Ryan films, and rather think of it as a Jack Ryan for newer generations...
Plus, if Pine can do a great Kirk, why not a decent Ryan, eh? One man's opinion, of course... wink.gif

I agree with you also I like Chris pines work as well

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post #21 of 38 Old 06-03-2014, 12:46 AM
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Just a heads up - Vudu offers its HDX version with only Dolby+ (STEREO - pathetic).

Ralph, I am with you on this film being rather lackluster. Honestly, it felt like a made for TV movie with everything being very formula (from story, to script to filming and editing).

I can't say anything negative about the actors as they really didn't have much to work with.
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post #22 of 38 Old 06-06-2014, 11:00 AM
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A standard CIA movie but simple!

I watched it and it entertained me and I've seen worse but It's not a Bourne identity, Spy game or The Recruit.

Jack Ryan is a Pierce Brosnan 007 movie when compared to Daniel Craig's 007 movies or Bourne identity.

I didn't mind the 7.1 audio and Chris Pine did the best he could to make the movie better. These were the two things that stood out for me.

Don't buy this BD out right yet. Your not missing anything, let the price drop and pick it up from a 2 for 1 bin in 6 months.

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post #23 of 38 Old 06-09-2014, 08:24 AM
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Based on Ralph's review and a trailer I saw for this film, I ordered it on blu-ray after the price dropped a bit. It should be arriving tomorrow so I'm hoping to see it soon.

Thanks for reviewing it, Ralph!

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post #24 of 38 Old 06-09-2014, 08:29 AM
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Just got my copy over the weekend...no time for viewing but should be posting my impressions soon... cool.gif
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post #25 of 38 Old 06-09-2014, 11:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Greetings,

Thanks Taranteacher & oz! I look forward to hearing from you both after you've seen it. smile.gif


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post #26 of 38 Old 06-10-2014, 06:53 PM
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Finally had a chance to see the Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit BD tonight and enjoyed it hugely. I should preface the rest of my remarks by reporting a number of factors that contributed by my high opinon of this film. I have been a Tom Clancy fan since he exploded on the scene with The Hunt for Red October in 1984; I have been a Chris Pine fan ever since his terrific performance as Captain Kirk in the Star Trek reboot; Keira Knightly has long been one of my favorite young actresses; and, finally, I really like Kenneth Branagh's work as a director and as an actor.

The film was cleverly written and moved with impressive speed. Branagh's excellent direction and the performances of his ensemble cast, who played the often over the top silliness frequently found in the film with lock-jawed seriousness, added to my enjoyment. The special effects were wonderful and the film's audio and video were up to the standards of modern big budget action films. At base, the film doesn't have a serious bone in its body but it is nevertheless great loud, dumb fun. Highly recommended! 8 Stars out of 10.
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post #27 of 38 Old 06-11-2014, 12:03 AM
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Hi Ralph smile.gif

Took this one in tonight and count me in the like list , as a fan it was just good enough but big Kudos on the very pristine and superb audio wink.gif
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post #28 of 38 Old 06-11-2014, 05:05 AM - Thread Starter
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Finally had a chance to see the Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit BD tonight and enjoyed it hugely. I should preface the rest of my remarks by reporting a number of factors that contributed by my high opinon of this film. I have been a Tom Clancy fan since he exploded on the scene with The Hunt for Red October in 1984; I have been a Chris Pine fan ever since his terrific performance as Captain Kirk in the Star Trek reboot; Keira Knightly has long been one of my favorite young actresses; and, finally, I really like Kenneth Branagh's work as a director and as an actor.

The film was cleverly written and moved with impressive speed. Branagh's excellent direction and the performances of his ensemble cast, who played the often over the top silliness frequently found in the film with lock-jawed seriousness, added to my enjoyment. The special effects were wonderful and the film's audio and video were up to the standards of modern big budget action films. At base, the film doesn't have a serious bone in its body but it is nevertheless great loud, dumb fun. Highly recommended! 8 Stars out of 10.

Greetings,

Thanks as always gwsat for contributing your thoughts. I always enjoy reading them.... smile.gif


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post #29 of 38 Old 06-11-2014, 05:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by audiofan1 View Post

Hi Ralph smile.gif

Took this one in tonight and count me in the like list , as a fan it was just good enough but big Kudos on the very pristine and superb audio wink.gif

Greetings,

Thanks for chiming in Jeff! I am glad you enjoyed this one all around.. cool.gif


Regards,

Ralph C. Potts
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post #30 of 38 Old 06-12-2014, 08:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post
<div class="quote-container" data-huddler-embed="/t/1532387/jack-ryan-shadow-recruit-blu-ray-official-avsforum-review/20_20#post_24817119" data-huddler-embed-placeholder="false"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>audiofan1</strong> <a href="/t/1532387/jack-ryan-shadow-recruit-blu-ray-official-avsforum-review/20_20#post_24817119"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif"></a><br><br>
Hi Ralph <img alt="smile.gif" class="bbcode_smiley" src="http://files.avsforum.com/images/smilies/smile.gif"><br><br>
Took this one in tonight and count me in the like list , as a fan it was just good enough but big Kudos on the very pristine and superb audio <img alt="wink.gif" class="bbcode_smiley" src="http://files.avsforum.com/images/smilies/wink.gif"></div>
</div>
<br>
Greetings,<br><br>
Thanks for chiming in Jeff! I am glad you enjoyed this one all around.. <img alt="cool.gif" class="bbcode_smiley" src="http://files.avsforum.com/images/smilies/cool.gif"><br><br><br>
Regards,
Liked the movie but i was surprised by its lack of sharpness.
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