The show revolves around Navy SEAL Commander James Reece taking justice into his own hands after the murder of his entire platoon in unknown circumstances, leaving him as one of the two survivors of the coordinated attack. The show stars Chris Pratt in the lead role of James Reece and also features Taylor Kitsch and Constance Wu in the side roles.
Chris Pratt channels his ‘inner Rambo’ in the latest Jack Carr adaptation that sees him go on a revenge mission. All eight episodes of the series are available on Amazon Prime.
The epic action-drama doesn’t start brightly as it experiences inconsistent pacing from the very beginning. It does however try to improve upon itself as the story unfolds but fails to do it constantly. The biggest issue with the show is its writing, as it stops it from reaching its full potential. The premise itself is captivating, but the way it chooses to deliver the nature of the events is very shallow.
The show tries to be complex in its storytelling but remains linear. It tries to throw off the audience with twists and turns, nonetheless, it is not enough to cover up for the inconsistency, as they are for most of the part predictable. It is frustrating to watch it as viewers because some of the build-ups around the events are good, while some others are not.
Chris Pratt in his ‘experimental role’ as James Reece acts convincingly as a man whose life is torn apart by the trauma of losing his loved ones. He manages to be ‘charismatically depressed’ in his performance and adamant about seeking vengeance.
The writing, however, does not capitalize on the complexity surrounding his character, as they fail to give him enough depth, remaining firm in portraying James Reece as a hero. It misses to stir up the debate about whether his actions are right or wrong among the audience.
Reece’s love for his family, again and again, is reminded to the audience to make him sympathize with him. However, they serve as a distraction more, and an attempt to justify his killing spree.
Taylor Kitsch as ‘Ben Edward’ is natural in his role. He delivers a phenomenal performance, and it’s not wrong to say he outshines Chris Pratt at his own game. The limited screen time he was available for, makes his presence worthwhile. Constance Wu, who plays Katie Buranek, proves that she was a good casting choice. Best known for her comedy roles, she blends into the role of a journalist.
The Terminal List is at its best when it’s focused on its stellar action. The fight scenes are chaotic, which adds to the realism of the moment. There is a good amount of technical knowledge displayed in fight spectacles, whether it is hand-to-hand combat, weapon armory skills, or even usage of tactical gears such as the flash grenade, and the smoke grenade. Everybody’s movements seem to be coordinated and add relevance to the authentic outlook of a trained fighter.
The event of the entire platoon getting killed in the first episode was spectacularly directed and specifically stands out, courtesy of Antoine Fuqua. Another commendable aspect of the show is the extent of brutality it displays. The gore and the violence fit the lore of the show very well and don’t feel unnecessary.
The direction and the cinematography are other plus points. The show continues to maintain the stylized look throughout. So, no complaints there.
In conclusion, it was a mixed experience. Overall, what could have been a good show has been let down by poor writing and transparency. It certainly makes one ask the question, “What it could have been?”. However, it certainly does enough to keep the audience invested with good action and direction.
It may be predictable, but by no means it is dull.
Final Score – [6.8/10]
Reviewed by - Devyansh Anand
Follow @AnandDevy on Twitter
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