Tom Clancy was ahead of his time in many respects with his numerous novels set in a common world, rather than just producing a number of more typical sequel stories as most novel series do, but the film adaptations were always one-offs that never really added up to anything as a whole.
But that might be changing today, as Amazon and Paramount are rumoured to be in the midst of launching a new Clancyverse, starting with the “Jack Ryan” series and continuing with “Without Remorse.” But there’s a significant catch, which we’ll go through later.
Without Remorse (also known as Tom Clancy’s Without Remorse) is an American action thriller film released in 2021. It is based on Tom Clancy’s 1993 novel of the same name. Michael B. Jordan, Jamie Bell, Jodie Turner-Smith, Lauren London, Brett Gelman, Jacob Scipio, Jack Kesy, Colman Domingo, and Guy Pearce feature in the film, which is directed by Stefano Sollima and written by Taylor Sheridan and Will Staples. After his pregnant wife and unit mates are slain by Russian hitmen, John Kelly, a US Navy SEAL, sets out on a road of vengeance.
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What is the Plot of Without Remorse?
A squad of US Navy SEALs led by Senior Chief John Kelly rescues a CIA officer kidnapped by a suspected pro-Assad paramilitary organisation in Aleppo. The scenario worsens when the SEALs find that the kidnappers are Russian military personnel.
Three months later, three members of the crew are assassinated by Russian FSB officers in apparent revenge for their involvement in the expedition. When the Russians break into Kelly’s house, they murder his pregnant wife Pam. Before being brought to the hospital with near-fatal wounds, Kelly murders all but one of the attackers.
Meanwhile, Lt. Commander Karen Greer, Kelly’s SEAL squad commander and friend, meets with CIA official Robert Ritter and Secretary of Defense Thomas Clay in Washington, D.C., to discuss how the FSB uncovered the SEALs’ identities and examine their reaction options. The leak of information about Russia’s unprecedented strike on American territory has strained the already poor relationship between the two countries, perhaps igniting a new cold war. Greer is motivated to send classified information to Kelly when the CIA refuses to initiate an inquiry into the deaths.
Kelly, who has recovered from his injuries, finds down the Russian ambassador who provided the FSB agents’ passports and forces him to reveal the identity of the remaining assassin before murdering him.
Kelly, who is serving a life sentence for murder, bargains his way out by disclosing that the fugitive is Victor Rykov, an ex-Spetznaz officer hiding in Murmansk, Russia. Greer advises against allowing Kelly to take part in Rykov’s capture, but Clay overrules her on the condition that Kelly serve his sentence following the mission.
The Making of Without Remorse
Without Remorse was set to be released by Paramount Pictures on September 18, 2020, but owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was pushed back to October 2, 2020, and then again to February 26, 2021. Amazon Studios is in discussions to buy the film’s distribution rights and distribute it digitally on Amazon Prime Video in July 2020.
In November 2020, Paramount announced that the picture will no longer be released in theatres. The film was previewed in an Amazon advertisement for Super Bowl LV that included Alexa and Jordan.
Since the novel’s publication in 1993, the film has been in production, with stars such as Keanu Reeves and Tom Hardy being considered for the character of Kelly. Jordan was cast as the lead character in September 2018, after more than two decades in development hell, and Sheridan was tapped to rework a script created in the 1990s. Filming started in Berlin in October 2019 and finished in October 2020.
We can’t even begin to guess at the relevance of Karen Greer’s existence because “Without Remorse” makes no additional references to characters from “Jack Ryan” or anything that transpired on that show. For the time being, it basically feels like a reference to the larger series, but in such a little way that her inclusion makes no promises about what’s ahead.