One of the handful of the Impossibles...

Thursday, January 18, 2018

One of the handful of the Impossibles...

...for me to flip past when I'm channel surfing, along with "All The President's Men," the original "The Day of the Jackal" and 1996's DeNiro-Pacino crime drama "Heat," is 2002's "The Sum of All Fears" because it's going to lead to a very satisfying denouement with the powerful Puccini aria Nessun Dorma on the soundtrack.

(No, that's not the incomparable voice of Luciano Pa­varotti, but that of a pretty fair California-born tenor named Bruce Sledge.)

Rarely has a film sequence been so well accompanied by an operatic score, as the three primary bad guys are dispatched by, in order, a throat-slitting, pistol shots, and finally an infernal device wired, not to his vehicle's ignition, but its cigarette lighter by the enigmatic Russian operative "Anatoli Grushkov" portrayed by Michael Byrne.

The character who assassinates "Olson" (Colm Feore) in that sequence, is John Clark, a CIA field operative played here by Liev Schreiber, and in an earlier Tom Clancy adap­ta­tion, "Clear and Present Danger," by Willem DaFoe.

People think of Clancy's main character to be CIA Analyst Jack Ryan, played on the big screen by Alec Baldwin, Har­rison Ford (twice) and Ben Affleck, but John Clark, in the movies at least, is the more interesting person.

He was a guy I wanted to see featured in his own film!

Unfortunately, Clancy's heart gave out in 2013, and none of the spate of writers chosen to continue his work, has seen fit to do anything with the Clark character.

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