Who’s Jack Reacher? Well, he’s my pick for most awesome hero in thriller novels right now. The first book in the series, The Killing Floor, starts after Reacher has left his job in the Military Police. His plan is to go wherever the wind takes him with the clothes on his back and a toothbrush. Reacher never goes looking for trouble, but he’s not the type of man to turn away from someone who clearly needs help. Once you’re on his radar, it’s just a matter of WHEN he catches up with you.
Every book since The Killing Floor is like having the greatest detective and badass rolled into one. But what really sets him apart, to me, is that he’s neither vigilante or super cop/FBI agent/Marine/ninja or whatever else you can think of.
He’s a guy who wants to be left alone.
I think he’d be fine if the world kept its problems to itself. But they never do and Reacher can’t turn a blind eye.
And now he’s coming to the big screen! Played by . . . Tom Cruise?
If you go just on looks, it’s definitely a strange casting choice. Book Reacher is six-five, two hundred and something pounds of I can kill you with my pinky. But how many big name choices are there that can portray a good Reacher and look the part? Unfortunately you can’t just call your movie Jack Reacher and expect the masses to show up. For every Bourne Identity that becomes a smash, there’s a ton of movies that only smash expectations of a sequel. So I get casting a big name like Cruise who can get people to the theater.
As far as talent goes, I think he can pull off the character. If you don’t believe me, then your assignment is to watch Collateral. Cruise plays a contract killer and does a fantastic job. If he can do that, he can do Reacher. I just hope the script lets Cruise play Reacher as Reacher.
I watched the trailer and, right off the bat, it seems the drifter part of his character has been changed in favor of giving him a muscle car. Okay. Maybe the toothbrush thing is still in the movie.
Another scene has Reacher up against five hooligans who’ve underestimated their opponent. And Cruise delivers his Reacher lines in a very Reacher-like fashion before kicking ass. I’m hoping this means that despite movie Reacher being stylistically different than book Reacher, the essence of the character will remain intact. Reacher and Lee Child deserve it.
Here’s the trailer. If you’ve never heard of Reacher and this looks like a good movie, immediately start reading the series. The stories are self-contained, so it doesn’t matter where you start. And if you’re wondering, the movie is based on One Shot, one of my favorites in the series.
For everyone else, what do you think? Does Cruise kill it for you? Who would be better?