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Friday, January 10 12:00 AM EST

Trailer Review: The Recruit

By Brian Briggs

Reviewinator

Starring Al Pacino
Colin Farrell
Director Roger Donaldson
Official Site Link
US Opening January 31, 2003
Rated PG-13
Genre Action/Thriller
Dead Bodies 0
Explosions 2
Weapons Colin Farrell's Eyebrow of Power, kung-fu fighting, handguns, laser-scoped sniper rifles, car bomb, fist, foot, VW Bug
Voice Over Yes
"In a world where..." "A secret world where nothing is what is seems. "
Spoilage Factor Seems like 50%
Geek Factor 25% (some computers, cool simulations, hi-tech goggles)
See Trailer? Borderline, seems like a generic action trailer.
See Movie? Depends on how much you like Al Pacino and Colin Farrell.

"Nothing is what it seems," says CIA recruiter extraordinaire, Walter Burke (Al Pacino) to a roomful of recruits. This trailer appears to have a lot of Brad Pitt parallels, but it only seems that way. This trailer appears to reveal a lot about the plot, but maybe it only seems that way (at least I hope).

"The first rule of CIA training - is do not get caught," continues Burke. Funny, I thought the first rule was to not talk about CIA training. Wait, that's Fight Club starring Brad Pitt, forgive me. Burke, a CIA old timer, recruits James (Colin Farrell) top of his class at MIT and Lord of the Eyebrow of Power. It only seems like this trailer could be a prequel to Spy Game which of course starred Brad Pitt.

You'll be quick to notice that Colin Farrell went to the Brad Pitt school of acting. Every mannerism, every look reminded me of Pitt. I guess those that can't do, teach.

Back to the trailer - James has to go through rigorous CIA training which includes torturous "picking up chicks in bars" tests. James snickers, "I have the Eyebrow of Power. Behold, I will stick my eyebrow out the window and the babes will flock." Pacino wants them to pick up 5, but it's unclear if he wants the Eyebrow to get 5 by itself or if the other guys need to get some too. I'm betting on the Eyebrow getting five, or maybe it just seems that way.

After training is complete, life becomes more complicated for James and the Eyebrow. Burke informs him that a fellow trainee, Layla, who's got him on his knees, is actually a mole, but for whom?

James, the smartest guy at MIT, seems to have a bit of trouble with this mission as he thinks it's a test, then he doesn't think it's a test, then he does. He ends up in a world of hurt, or maybe it just seems that way.

Of course, the trailer is not as it seems either. The actual movie is a Pixar animated adventure with a talking moose named Gabe voiced by John Goodman. If only we were all tops at MIT then we could've figured that out. Why they spent so much money to get Pacino and Farrell for the trailer I'll never know. But I digress.

After actor introductions, we get the standard quick-cut action trailer finale. Then the generic quick-stop with a battered Pitt, I mean Farrell, telling us, "Everything is a test." A test of whether Brad Pitt is going to sue you for stealing his act maybe?

Conclusion on Trailer: The laser sights on the chest and Pacino's acting overcome the generic action plot to make this trailer worthy of a download.

Conclusion on Movie: Could be a fun movie with some popcorn, but I'll wait for the DVD and drink some wine instead.

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