Cruise plays it tough in ‘Reacher’

Presumably taking a long, self-indulgent glance at his “What Would Clint Do?” bracelet, Tom Cruise takes on the iconic role of surly vigilante in “Jack Reacher,” resulting in a mismatch of wincingly epic proportions.

This movie is designed primarily to put its leading man in as many clichéd, macho postures as possible, whether it’s crouched behind the wheel of a lipstick-red vintage Chevelle or popping off perfect shots in a ballistic showdown. “I’m just a guy who wants to be left alone” is just one eye-roller of a catchphrase uttered by Cruise, whose character is a laconic Iraq war veteran summoned by the aforementioned shooter to exonerate him for mass murder. Working in cahoots with a beautiful defense attorney (Rosamund Pike), Reacher is a supposedly reluctant hero. But with his penchant for grandstanding it’s difficult to imagine him turning down any opportunity to show off a nearly bottomless — and increasingly monotonous — store of Cool Guy-approved skills.

The DVD (Paramount, $30) has no extras, while the Blu-ray ($40) adds commentary and featurettes.

Washington Post

Kristin Tillotson says: As he can do in his sleep by now, Tom Cruise puts on his tough face and quickly takes command of the screen as Jack Reacher.

Also out Tuesday

Movies: “Mama,” “The Oranges,” “Safe Haven,” “Superman: Unbound,” “Upstream Color.”

TV: “Flashpoint” (Season 5), “Fringe” (Season 5), “Gunsmoke” (Season 8), “Have Gun, Will Travel” (Season 6), “In the Hive,” “Private Practice” (Season 6), “Rookie Blue” (Season 3), “Royal Pains” (Season 4), “30 Rock” (Season 7).

Blu-ray debuts: “Band of Outsiders,” “The Great Escape,” “An Officer and a Gentleman,” “Shanghai Noon/Shanghai Knights.”


Tech Q&A

Taking credit for a ride

Q: Can I use my transit card or smart transit card for transportation systems other than in my city?

A: You can use your transit card only in your city. In some cities, you can use the same card for different modes of transportation such as subways, buses and ferries.

Contactless transit cards and contactless bank cards are converging in the United States, however, as transit operators are moving toward “open payment.” This enables the use of bank-issued contactless credit or debit cards from American Express, Discover Network, MasterCard or Visa for direct transit fare payments without a separate transit fare card. This also paves the way for direct transit fare payments using mobile phones with Near Field Communications (NFC), which works with open contactless payments.

Chicago, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., are among the leading transit operators bringing open payment to their riders.

Just Ask Gemalto



Swype available at Google Play

Swype, one of our favorite Android keyboards, has finally shed its long-held beta tag and made its way over to Google Play, where it’s available for $1. The official version comes bundled with Dragon Dictation for enhanced voice-to-text and adds a few features for the typo-prone.

If you use voice-to-text with Swype, there’s a lot to like about the update. It adds support for national and regional dialects in various languages, and comes bundled with Dragon Dictation’s own speech-to-text engine so it can quickly recognize words as you say them (and bypasses Google’s speech-to-text feature entirely). The new “smart touch” feature aims to learn from your most commonly corrected typos so it can predict and correct them.

Swype is no longer free as it was in beta, but it is more affordable than the community favorite, SwiftKey. The $1 price is a “limited time offer,” and Swype isn’t saying when that limited time expires or what the full price will be, so if you want it, grab it now.




Portable iPad desk offers flexibility

Having a desk, which folds up to 1 inch thick and weighs less than a pound, is what you get with the Ergotech Versa Case for iPad ($125,

Once your iPad is mounted with the included hard rubberized back case, it mounts to the arm and gives you 180 degrees of versatility by having it sit on a flat surface or even mounting it under a cabinet. A ring is built into the back of the case, which securely attaches to a spring-loaded mount on the end of the arm. The stand is built with a silver-colored brushed aluminum finish and has rubber pads on the bottom to prevent it from scratching your desktop.

Two feet separate on the bottom for balance and its arm folds out to attach the case for angling in most any direction. When you’re done, it folds up into a portable (31/4 by 9 by 1 1/4 inches) accessory.

McClatchy News Service