First Hit: Cruise is Cruise which means you always know it is Cruise playing a character and because his presence is generally intense, the film is entertaining.
The film is about a young Iraqi vet who is framed for shooting 5 people on the river bank in Pittsburgh, PA. All the evidence points to him and while he is being interrogated he writes down on a piece of paper, “Get Jack Reacher”. Why?
The DA Rodin (played by Richard Jenkins), the head detective Emerson (played by David Oyelowo) and the defense attorney Helen (played by Rosamund Pike) who is also the DA’s daughter, all think he's guilty and don't understand who Jack Reacher is or why he would know anything about this case. Reacher (Cruise) lives anonymously after leaving the Army. He has no phone, car, or home. He arrives unannounced at the police station.
Helen is curious as to why he’s there and what he can do to assist the case. Reacher is a former Military Policeman and he doesn’t make mistakes. He's there because he’s the best and only the accused knows it. The accused knows that Reacher will find out the real truth. Well as you might imagine he discovers the entire plot which has to do with Russians that take over businesses.
Fairly lame plot, but Cruise surrounds himself with the best and therefore the film works, there are few mistakes so it works, but it isn’t memorable by any stretch of the imagination.
Cruise is perfect at acting this role and we always know it is Tom Cruise. This thought never left me as I watched this film. Jenkins is fine as a powerful, righteous and rich DA. Oyelowo is good as the head cop. Pike is very good as the DA's daughter and as a main character in the film. Werner Herzog is interesting as a one eyed former prisoner named "The Zec". Robert Duvall is amusing as "Cash" a shoot range owner. Christopher McQuarrie wrote and directed this unimpressive but cleanly executed film
Overall: This is the kind of film one can sit and watch realizing there is nothing of real value but it is entertaining.