Tom Clancy movies are not in the conversation the same way as they were in the 90s. It was not until Amazon attempted Jack Ryan as a series that the character found a new lease on life. Now, Paramount with Amazon is attempting another Clancy adaptation using Without Remorse.
This time, the studio has Michael B. Jordan in the driver’s seat of the military thriller, alongside director Stefano Sollima, who previously helmed Sicario: Day of the Soldado.
That sequel did not rise to the heights of the original but the movie itself conveyed Sollima had potential to film tense action scenes.
Does Without Remorse give Tom Clancy a successful movie adaptation after years of misfires? Here is our full review.
Without Remorse review
The film centers on John Kelly (Michael B. Jordan), a Navy SEAL who gets sent on a mission overseas that ends up making him and his fellow soldiers a target of Russians.
Returning home, John and his team believe that the questionable duty they were sent to handle was behind them. That is until each of the SEAL members begin getting picked off one by one until it reaches the quiet home of John.
Inside his house, his wife Pam Kelly (Lauren London) is also pregnant with a child, who John attempts to protect from the incoming invaders. But as vigilant and fierce as John is, he fails. This sets the stage for John to want nothing but to see anyone involved with the invasion burn.
As he begins to seek his vengeance on those who took away his loved ones, John finds that the more he digs for the killers, the conspiracy behind the murders grows larger.
The last couple of attempts at making a Tom Clancy book into film were mostly forgettable. There was Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit which was anything but memorable and before that was The Sum of All Fears--a movie that barely enters the conversation at all.
Most fans of the author have probably longed for the days of Harrison Ford as Jack Ryan. At least until John Krasinski defibrillated the role back to life with the Amazon hit series.
Well, thirst no more because Without Remorse is the Tom Clancy film we have been waiting for.
Between the television series Jack Ryan and now this film, Paramount and Amazon are proving they understand the Clancy-verse and how to maximize its full potential. And this movie more than exceeds its potential.
The greatest gift to this adaptation is Michael B. Jordan as John Kelly. The very moment his character becomes provoked, Jordan delivers a vicious Earth-shattering performance that easily rivals Denzel Washington’s in Man on Fire.
He is truly one of the best actors working today and the lengths he goes to in this film are phenomenal. Beyond the emotional execution, this will be the film that places him in the same conversation as Tom Cruise when discussing stunt work – and in this movie, it’s all him and it absolutely shows.
The action in this movie is mouthwatering. The best action films have protagonists that feel mortal, and as ruthless as John Kelly is, he feels vulnerable in the chaos.
\Various sequences put Jordan’s character through absolute torment. Much like the original Die Hard, Jordan’s character of John Kelly gets the John McClane treatment. He bleeds, he gets broken bones, and many times viewers will feel that he might not survive.
There is also a set-piece in this film that rivals some of the best action films such as The Raid and yes, once again, Die Hard. It’s a scene that just builds and builds and viewers will not want the sequence to end.
And to top it off, Without Remorse does possess a compelling narrative within the vengeful clothing. The film presents a setup that most movies typically execute in a predictable fashion.
But with Clancy’s voice and Taylor Sheridan (Sicario) as a script credit, John Kelly’s journey is full of unexpected reversals that surprisingly lead to timely messages about the military. That said, saying anything more is a spoiler risk, so to summarize, it’s going to keep the audience flipping on who to trust and what might happen next.
As far as complaints, if one were to attempt finding a flaw here, it would be a gross misuse of time considering everything Without Remorse accomplishes. It would also be an exaggerated job of nitpicking.
Should you watch Without Remorse on Amazon Prime Video?
Without Remorse is the first great Tom Clancy movie in over two decades. It contains another riveting performance from Michael B. Jordan that certifies him as a blockbuster force of nature. And more so, it’s one of the most magnetically vicious onscreen characters since Denzel Washington in Man on Fire.
Between Jordan doing his own stuntwork and brilliantly orchestrated action pieces that will have viewers sweating, Without Remorse is the movie to see this weekend.
Without Remorse will premiere on Amazon Prime Video on April 30.