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Overall Rating

Awesome: 10.61%
Worth A Look: 9.09%
Pretty Bad: 34.85%
Total Crap: 7.58%

6 reviews, 30 user ratings

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Recruit, The
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by EricDSnider

"What if it were Will Ferrell, not Colin Farrell? That would be awesome."
3 stars

“The Recruit” is, thankfully, a rare thing. It is a movie that inspires almost no feelings whatsoever in some scenes, mild interest in others. The overall impact is that of having watched something benign and inoffensive, of having spent two hours with nothing good or bad to show for it.

The film, a rather ordinary espionage thriller, benefits from charismatic performances by Colin Farrell and Al Pacino, though. Pacino plays Walter Burke, a long-time CIA trainer with typical Pacino swagger and bravado who recruits a Boston computer hotshot named James Clayton (Farrell) into the agency.

We don’t know much about James except that he’s brilliant with computers and always has a two-growth of beard, including, one assumes, immediately after he has shaved (just like Homer Simpson). Maybe he lives alone, maybe he doesn’t; in the first scene, he hollers for someone to answer the phone because he’s in bed, but there is never any subsequent mention of friends, family or loved ones.

At any rate, his father died in a plane crash years ago, and Burke implies it was CIA-related. Do not get attached to this plot thread, though, because it is under-utilized for the rest of the film.

Training is full of the usual sort of mind games you expect in a film like this, as well the traditional James Bond-style high-tech gadgetry. Then, finally, an hour into the film, we get to the real story, which has James trying to sniff out a mole within the organization.

Bridget Moynihan is sexy indeed as James’ fellow spy trainee and tentative love interest. Farrell, an interesting young actor, has sufficient charm to keep people watching even when nothing exciting is happening, and we all know about Pacino’s magnetism.

Directed by Roger Donaldson (”Thirteen Days,” “Dante’s Peak”), “The Recruit” has a few thrilling moments but no real unforeseen twists, plot-wise. It meets basic expectations -- it is not dull and it is not difficult to watch -- but it does nothing to exceed them.

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originally posted: 01/31/03 14:28:16
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User Comments

8/07/06 Tangelo Soosepot Collin is a cute monkey who acts his way from A to B 3 stars
8/07/06 R.W.Welch If you can't trust your friendly local CIA agent, who can you trust? C+ spy thriller. 3 stars
2/23/06 Frank Rountree the acting was believable, not bad 3 stars
12/10/04 Kristina Williams dull 1 stars
11/08/04 Steve Newman Surprised this had bad reviews - i really enjoyed it 4 stars
5/13/04 Dean Rapp It was ok, i like the bugs 4 stars
4/25/04 Carla i liked it a lot, the plot twists were awesome! 5 stars
3/17/04 luke good movie 5 stars
10/23/03 jessica brilliant!! 5 stars
9/02/03 Jinnvisible Has it started yet , Oh its finished already , oh I though it was a long trailer. 2 stars
8/06/03 keith langman to many plot twist to follow 3 stars
7/14/03 Bob Wee Great!!!! 5 stars
6/12/03 Jerra This is a very bad movie... The story lacks any intelligence what so ever.... 2 stars
5/31/03 bigbro its amazing how little they think we know about the CIA 2 stars
5/27/03 Jack Sommersby Smoothly directed but nonsensical plotting sinks it. 2 stars
5/23/03 .. great 5 stars
5/14/03 Natalie Stonecipher SLOW start, but 2nd half has some excitement. Pacino recovering from insomnia somewhat. 4 stars
3/20/03 Cameron Slick polished thriller is engaging until it takes one twist too many into the predictable. 4 stars
3/20/03 Boris Loved it. Typical spy stuff but good nonetheless. 5 stars
3/12/03 Greg Edmiston It was interesting, and enough to keep me attentive. No more, no less. 4 stars
3/10/03 George Jung How come FUCKING and ALL ASS aren't in the ratings? I'll say it: This movie SUCKS ALL ASS!! 1 stars
2/15/03 Chris I was hoping for more but I really enjoyed myself. 4 stars
2/06/03 Todd I wonder if Sid and I saw the same movie. typical spy crap 1 stars
2/04/03 ownerofdajoint pacino and moynihan are worth the time..... 3 stars
2/02/03 Bill Kilpatrick A manual on how to write a bad movie. 1 stars
2/02/03 will were it not for the ending, I would've said it was pretty decent 3 stars
2/02/03 Rob Decent concept, but in the end just kisses the ass of Geroge Bush 2 stars
2/01/03 dave not overly convincing of its plot-twist. a yawn and good to watch before going to bed tho' 3 stars
1/29/03 Sid Whiting Vintage Pacino, great story, brilliant directing. 5 stars
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  31-Jan-2003 (PG-13)
  DVD: 25-Jan-2005



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