T.C. = J.R.
by DICK CHENEY
Jack Reacher: Never Go Back
dir. Edward Zwick
Jack Reacher starts up a phone relationship with a brunette, one Major Turner (Cobie Smulders). She's like twenty years younger than him and is currently under indictment for espionage, which makes her incredibly appealing. For a good portion of the running time of Jack Reacher: Never Go Back they never meet, which only heightens the intense erotic tension.
At roughly the same time that he begins this romance, Jack Reacher finds out that he has a fifteen-year old daughter. He has never even heard of the mother, but then again he did a lot of things around Y2K figuring that the world was probably coming to an end very shortly. He follows this suspected daughter, who looks something like a runway model but is a professional shoplifter. When she confronts him for tailing her, she asks if he is a cop. "Do I look like a cop?" Reacher responds. No one could possibly look like more of one.
Sometimes I wonder what sex between Cobie Smulders and Tom Cruise would actually be like. I imagine it would be something close to a mexican stand off, with a lot of rustling and light smacks atop the phallus and vagina. "Ten minutes is a very long time," announces another character. We can't imagine to what that could refer.
About twenty minutes into Jack Reacher: Never Go Back, Tom is put into a military prison. Five minutes later he breaks out Cobie Smulders and himself without firing a single bullet. The first thing they do back in Washington D.C. is hit up an internet cafe to catch up on the Drudge Report and stuff. She still uses a RSS reader, which is kind of weird.
Reacher gets antsy and starts missing his new daughter. He breaks her phone by shattering it on the ground, and makes her dress up like a Catholic schoolgirl. She steals the credit cards of a classmate and does not fit in at the school at all. She has no plan to take the SAT and her college prospects look grim. Reacher pulls her out of school and the three of them fly from Washington D.C. to New Orleans. It's actually quite funny watching Reacher have a family who he has to account for his actions to, and it makes Jack Reacher: Never Go Back a lot more fun than the horrid first film in the series.
While they are the plane, Reacher's daughter cozies up to Cobie Smulders for a long talk. "What was it like working with Jason Segel?" she asks. "Does he talk about his dick as much as people say? Do you like Jack Reacher? Is he your boyfriend or friends with benefits?" She denies caring about Cruise at all, and he pretends to be asleep throughout this whole episode. Sex is anathema to the entire Cruise project — it will be like Westworld where everyone turns out to be a robot, Jack Reacher most of all.
A lot of times I wonder about what Tom Cruise is going to do when he gets really old. He does a lot of crossfit to stay in this good of shape, although it is quite noticeable that he never bothers taking off his jacket throughout Jack Reacher: Never Go Back. His horizontal mobility is still top notch, but sometimes when he runs, which is very often, you can see him starting to flag a bit.
The one thing I hate the most is when older people talk about being old. To his immense credit, Tom strictly emphasizes that no one is to refer to him as old. When he looks for a doppleganger in the airport in order to steal an ID that will allow him past the TSA, Tom looks for a guy no more than thirty. The two women he is with agree that they are a perfect match.
Later in the movie, Cobie Smulders strolls into Jack Reacher's hotel room with a white robe. She asks him what he was thinking would happen after they went on their first date. She seductively places a french fry in her mouth. To no one's shock or surprise this scene ends in an argument. If Reacher can't close given these circumstances, this is a man who has no interest in sex with a woman whatsoever.
Maybe that's for the best. Intercourse slows inertia — Tom's aerodynamic properties could possibly compromised by the addition of other individuals. Soon enough he tells his women that they should stay at the greasy New Orleans hotel Cobie paid cash for while he meets up with a bunch of men in what looks to be an abandoned warehouse. It is the first time he has smiled since he has been in the South.
Dick Cheney is the senior contributor to This Recording.