Michael B. Jordan stars in a familiar action cliche bolstered only by his presence.
A team of Navy Seals, including John Kelly (Michael B. Jordan), rescue a CIA asset in Aleppo, Syria. In the process, they discover that the operation involved Russian military assets. Three months later, all of the survivors are killed by Russian agents with the exception of Kelly, whose pregnant wife, Pam (Lauren London), is killed in the process. Kelly kills all but one of the attackers in retaliation. When the government declines to respond or even investigate the killings, Kelly is told by his friend Lt. Commander Greer (Jodie Turner-Smith) about a Russian diplomat who played a key role in the murders. Kelly interrogates the diplomat, lethally, and is sent to prison for murder. He eventually bargains his way out by revealing information he got from the diplomat and agreeing to help capture a rogue agent. Now Kelly has to find out exactly who is behind these killings and why they seem to be trying to start a new cold war.
If you’re familiar with Tom Clancy, the final stinger of this movie won’t surprise you much. Hell, if you played the Rainbow Six games enough, you probably knew what was coming. Fortunately, none of that foreknowledge will impact your viewing of this film’s events. What WILL likely impact your enjoyment is that most of the movie is pretty much the standard formula for Clancy’s movies and the many other films that copy them. Clear and Present Danger, Patriot Games, Hunt for the Red October, etc. All of these have elements that you will see play out again in this movie. John Kelly is a badass whose actions are always justified and everyone that stands against him is pretty much just an idiot. All of the soldiers are repeatedly sold out by politicians and schemers, but don’t worry, America is still going to be fine because we catch the bad guy and everyone knows that’s all you ever need. It’s the film’s refusal to try and address anything bigger that really demonstrates how unwilling they are to change the formula.
However, the upside to the movie is that Michael B. Jordan is still a hell of an actor. If you haven’t recognized that by this point, I’m not sure what to tell you. He can carry a role, even if it’s a role that you’ve essentially seen a dozen times. The action sequences benefit heavily from that same skill. This film has a lot of firefights and fireless fights and they’re all very intense. If you want ‘splosions, you will be happy. If you want Michael B. Jordan showing how much energy he can bring to even the most banal scenes, you will be happy. If you wanted a new, more modern take on this subgenre of action films, then you will not be happy.
Overall, it’s not a great movie and you’ve definitely seen it before, but it’s not a bad movie to have on in the background just to see some big action sequences.