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Patriot Games-This aint no game soldier
Patriot Games (DVD)
Member Name: jonnyfun06
Patriot Games (DVD)
Advantages: Good movie, adapted from the book well
Disadvantages: A film crying out for features on the disc
Patriot Games sees Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan return to the screen fresh from the hit movie Hunt for Red October. This time Ryan, who is played by Harrison Ford in this film, breaks up an assassination attempt on a member of the British Royal family whilst on vacation in London. During the attempt Ryan kills one of the terrorists, the younger brother of Sean Miller played by Sean Bean. The Irish terrorist group behind the attack don't take kindly to this and fuelled by Sean Miller's thirst for revenge they target Ryan and his family.
Of course Jack Ryan isn't going to take this lying down so rejoins the CIA to track down the terrorist group for the sake of his family.
The anamorphic widescreen picture is clear and sharp with no visible marks on the film's print. The colours don't look as bright as they should do in certain scenes in my opinion however this is probably nitpicking on my part. This is also a huge improvement over the picture quality on Hunt for Red October so a thumbs up from me.
Thee Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack is very good. With several large explosions giving the sub woofer a good workout and great use of the rear channels a lively and involving soundstage is created. Dialogue is crisp and doesn't stray and all in all a very good soundtrack.
I do, however, have a large problem with the score. Composed by James Horner, of Titanic, Braveheart and many more fame, I was expecting something pretty special. Titanic rates as my favourite score along with numerous others by James Horner as close contenders. What you get for the most part of this soundtrack is a reworking of his earlier scores from previous movies.
The features on this disc are minimal to say the least, one whole trailer.
Patriot Games had a tough act to follow being the sequel to the excellent Hunt for Red October. Very cleverly, for whatever reasons, Harrison Ford replaces Alec Baldwin as Jack Ryan so immediately sets the movie up as a stand alone effort which has never really had to live up to it's predecessor.
Harrison Ford does a much better job with the character of Jack Ryan. Still very much the reluctant hero he is a family man who will do whatever it takes to protect them. You can see the torment on his face and he really gives you a character you can empathise with. I'm a big fan of Harrison Ford and this movie reaffirms his acting talents. Sean Bean plays a great villain and balances out Ford's good guy nicely.
Other cast members include James Earl Jones reprising his role as the head of the CIA, Admiral James Greer, and an appearance from Samuel L Jackson as LCDR Robby Jackson, a long time friend of Ryan's.
I thoroughly enjoyed this movie the first time I saw it and I thoroughly enjoyed it again and again. Directed by Phillip Noyce the movie rolls along at a good pace and has some great set pieces. The tension really builds when the terrorists are homing in on Ryan's wife (Ann Archer) and the SAS scene works amazingly well considering what you don't see.
Overall this is a great movie on a good quality DVD only lacking in the extras department. Definitely recommended.
Summary: Another excellent film from a Tom Clancy book