Happy Birthday to Pierce Brosnan! The actor formerly known as James Bond will be celebrating a major milestone today, he turns 60 years old.
Of course Brosnan is most known for his suave portrayal of the iconic Bond character. He did walk in those shoes 4 times: Goldeneye (1995) (my favorite Pierce Brosnan Bond), Tomorrow Never Dies (1997), The World is Not Enough (1999), and Die Another Day (2002).
He is almost exactly 7 months older than my father and I remember my dad taking me to see all four of his James Bond movies in the theatre over the years. At the time I always thought it was pretty cool to think that James Bond was the same age as my dad.
I remember hating Pierce Brosnan’s character in Mrs. Doubtfire (1993) because he played his part so well. After seeing him as Bond, I thought Pierce was pretty awesome. After re-watching Mrs. Doubtfire, I liked him even more.
Brosnan was a superstar for a while in the 90’s and early 2000’s, but then his career began to fade.
The Matador (2005) was a sort of comeback movie for him. In it he plays an aging hit man who is beginning to lose his edge. It’s a dark comedy that also featured Greg Kinnear. The role seemed so out of character for Pierce, but his performance was priceless. The movie could have been better, but his part was great.
He has continued making many movies, but the only one worth mentioning in more recent years is The Greatest (2009).
Somewhere along the way he lost his status and has not been able to be a part of big films. Of course, I guess that is what comes with age. I’m still a fan though. Cheers to you Mr. Bond!
Jack Reacher (2012)
This was a highly anticipated movie for me to see. I was excited to see it about a year ago when I first heard it was being filmed. This was all mainly because in the last year and a half or so, I read all 17 Jack Reacher novels written by Lee Child. I absolutely loved the books. What a wonderful series! I read through those stories like a fat kid eats a candy bar. I just could not get enough.
Being the Reacher fan that I am, I was very skeptical when I first heard that Tom Cruise was going to play the part of Jack Reacher in the movie. I think that Cruise is one of the best actors of our time. But physically, Tom Cruise is 5’7’’ and 170lbs. while Jack Reacher is 6’5’’ and depending on the book, anywhere from 210-250lbs. In other words, Cruise is 10 inches shorter and 80lbs. lighter than the character that he plays.
An unemployed Lee Child was at the grocery store with his wife and he would help reach groceries that were on the top shelf. His wife joked that he could get a job as a Reacher at the store. That is where Jack Reacher gets his name.
Tom Cruise could not reach the top shelf and therefore he could never get a job as a Reacher. For all we know, he probably can’t reach the middle shelf. This being said, Cruise is going to play the role of Reacher. How is that going to work?
It worked. It was an enormous reach, but Cruise pulled it off. Somehow the camera added 80lbs and 10 inches. He did it. He was Reacher. He was not actually any bigger, but he was a walking, talking, ass-kicking, Jack Reacher.
Jack Reacher was a smart, fun, action adventure that was a worthy screen depiction of a very solid novel called One Shot. One Shot is the 9th novel in the Reacher series. It is not necessary to read the books in order and therefore not necessary to film the movies in order.
I think that the filmmakers could film the Reacher series James Bond style. Get a new actor to play Jack Reacher and a new director every few movies. That gives you 17 and counting quality stories to work from. They should do it. I would watch them all. That would keep the characters fresh and the stories already speak for themselves. My favorite Reacher novel is Persuader. I hope they turn that one into a movie.
It was a treat to see 81-year-old Robert Duvall in the film. He’s still got it.
Lee Child also has a cameo in the movie. Without spoiling the story, just look for a guy who hands something to Tom Cruise. If the other books get turned into movies, it would be cool if Child went all Alfred Hitchcock and had a cameo in every movie.
I wondered why the movie was named Jack Reacher and not One Shot like the novel that it is based off of. My only conclusion is that more people are familiar with Jack Reacher than One Shot and therefore would likely be more interested in seeing the movie. Jack Reacher’s reputation is enough to fill the seats, but the title One Shot is not. With that being said, One Shot is not the best novel in the Reacher series. There are multiple Reacher books that are better than that one. In other words, there should be plenty of awesome Reacher movies to come. At least, I hope so.
I rate this movie an 9 out of 10.
Buy, rent, or run? Buy.
Skyfall is the best movie in the theatre right now. If you are a James Bond fan and have not seen this film, then I suggest you get out there and do so immediately. It is my second favorite Bond film behind Casino Royale (2006). Daniel Craig is not quite as cold blooded in Skyfall as he is in Casino Royale, and the film as a whole is not quite at dark or quite as intense as Casino Royale, but it is a very close second.
If you are looking for a superb action flick that will keep you on the edge of your seat, then this is the movie for you. It is well acted, well directed, and well filmed. The movie is almost 2 ½ hours long, but it felt like it was half that long because it keeps your attention the whole time. Time flies when you’re having fun.
Javier Bardem’s villain is one that you will love to hate. I think that I will hate it when Daniel Craig is no longer Bond. In my opinion, Daniel Craig is the best James Bond. Lucky for me, he has signed on for Bond 24 and Bond 25.
Skyfall seems a little bit more realistic than most other bonds. The action scenes don’t seem as far out as most other Bond films. The gadgets are fewer and also more realistic. It’s these things that I think make the movie more believable and James Bond more human.
Casino Royale was responsible for changing the whole dynamic of the Bond film and making Bond more real. Quantum of Solace (2008) seemed to have elements of that, but there was something missing. Skyfall has resurrected the Casino Royale mentality with a vengeance.
I rate this movie a 8.5 on a scale of 1-10.
Buy, rent, or run? Buy.