5 Reasons Why Without Remorse Should Be on Your Weekend Watchlist
The Amazon Prime Original stars Michael B Jordan as John Clark in this terrific Tom Clancy adaptation
You know how they say the book is always better than the movie?
Stefano Sollima’s much-awaited action thriller challenges this notion in his adaptation of Without Remorse, based on Tom Clancy’s eponymous 1993 novel. Starring Michael B. Jordan in the lead role and supported by a powerful star cast, the film is part of the Jack Ryan universe created by Clancy and is sure to thrill fans of the film series and books alike.
A tightly packed thriller, Without Remorse delves into the origin story of how Agent John Clark (aka John Kelly) came to be associated with the CIA and the Jack Ryan universe. While Sollima has added his own spin to Clancy’s novel, the film perfectly captures the tense, fast-paced, and twisted storytelling that we have come to associate with the franchisee.
Without any spoilers, then, here are 5 reasons why we think it should be on your immediate watchlist.
1. We Have Waited LONG Enough For This Movie
If you can believe it, this film has been in the works since the mid-90s. Starting with Sony Pictures, who bought the rights from Clancy, the production of Without Remorse changed hands several times up until Paramount took over in 2012. Despite that, several factors halted production for over 6 years, until Stefano Sollimo was chosen to direct the present version that we saw. While filming ended in 2020, the ongoing pandemic pushed back its theatrical release, until Amazon Prime Video acquired digital distribution rights and brought it to our home screens.
Like we said, a long wait – but worth it on all counts.
2. Michael B Jordan Lives Up To All Our Expectations And More
We don’t even know where to begin, because Jordan has truly outdone himself as Agent Clark. Clark’s character across Ryanverse is often touted as Jack Ryan’s ‘darker side’ – and the actor has fully captured the Navy SEAL’s pathos, anger, anguish, and physical skills as he tracks down an international conspiracy behind the murder of his pregnant wife. Jordan is explosive in the action sequences, but equally powerful when he grieves, loves, and loses his family. The Black Panther and Creed II star truly owns the character of Agent Kelly in the film, making us feel every tense moment to the core.
Fun fact: Several A-listers were considered for this role across its development, including Keanu Reeves and Tom Hardy, but Jordan’s performance leaves no doubt that he’s now always going to be the John Clark we remember.
3. The Action Is Unforgettable, But it’s Also an Emotional Rollercoaster
Director Stefano Sollima and screenwriter Taylor Sheridan (of Sicario fame) have captured a gamut of emotions amidst the action, supported by some excellent VFX and a powerful background score. Clancy’s books feature rich internal worlds for his characters and the same has been brought out by the Italian director in his own style. The result is an adventure thriller spanning continents and time zones: including the threat of an US-Russian war, top-secret CIA missions, conspiracies that go all the way to the top guy, and Agent Kelly’s individual quandaries between personal revenge and patriotic duty.
4. Jodie Turner-Smith Kills It as Former Navy SEAL Commander
The entire cast is commendable, but we want to specifically highlight the character of Lt. Commander Karen Greer, reprised by Turner-Smith. Together with officer Robert Ritter (excellently essayed by Jamie Bell), the duo rope in Agent Kelly for the mission to save the United States from a full-blown war with Russia. Turner-Smith is formidable in her role, commanding respect, fear, and confidence as she leads the team of Navy SEALs on the operation. The former True Blood actor helps channel Agent Kelly’s confusion and anger into a mission that we all start to root for.
Another fun fact: The US Navy IRL have so far never had female SEAL, forget a commander – so we truly welcome this diversity introduced in the film.
5. The End Is Insane (And a Sequel is in the Works!)
No spoilers – don’t worry, but the end will make you go ‘Whaaaat’ followed by ‘OMG – cannot wait to see what happens next’. In 2018 itself, Paramount had announced that Jordan would reprise his role as Agent Kelly in Rainbow Six, a sequel to this origin story. Fans and gamers will be familiar with the Rainbow Six franchise – based on Clancy’s 1998-novel – which delves into the escapades of a multinational counter-terrorism team, called Rainbow. In the novel, Kelly takes over as Rainbow’s chief commander which has branches into Mossad, FBI, and MI6 among others. Even as Without Remorse sets the ground for Kelly’s beginnings and growth, the sequel is likely to take us further into a world where homegrown elements threaten to disrupt international peace.
Now wondering if we may have missed some Easter Eggs in the film. BRB, going to re-watch.
Without Remorse is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video.
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