The Recruit

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The Recruit is a difficult film for me to review. We tried to see it in the theater; however, my wife got very sick about midway through and we had to leave. We couldnít bring ourselves to shell out the money to go see it again in the theater. So, we were eagerly waiting for the film to be released on DVD. Of course, when it was released, everyone else also wanted to see it, so it took us a while to find a copy. Anyway, on with the show...

The Recruit stars Al Pacino as a Walter Burke, a CIA recruiter and trainer and Colin Farrell as James Crawford, the target of his recruitment activities. Crawford is an MIT graduate that specializes in high tech computer work. He is also a prime physical specimen. And he is the son of a man who died under mysterious circumstances in 1990. The first part of the film focuses on Burkeís efforts to recruit Crawford and the training Crawford undergoes to become a CIA operative. I found this part of the movie to be very entertaining, even if not terribly believable. Some of the training scenes and Burkeís lessons at The Farm (the CIAís training complex in rural Virginia) were quite fun.

The second half of the movie was far less successful. I canít explain too much about this without giving away too many critical plot elements. However, I found the entire plot to be needlessly convoluted and very unbelievable. Too many things just didnít ring true.

Thus, I cannot quite recommend The Recruit. I think my wife and I unknowingly had the right idea when we left the theater halfway; we saw the good part and left the rest behind.

June 6, 2003