Review: Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
PLOT: After the IMF is shut down (Ghost Protocol for those not in the know) and implicated in the bombing of the Kremlin, Ethan Hunt and his team are forced to go rogue. With no help from the inside, and a seemingly by the books CIA senior analyst, they find they have bigger problems than anticipated. Not only are they fighting to clear their name, but they must save the world from nuclear disaster. Get ready for some serious action!
MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: GHOST PROTOCOL is exhilarating. It is hard to imagine the feeling of anxiety filled awe as Tom Cruise scales the largest building in the world, but once you witness it on screen, believe me you damn well feel it. This latest chapter in the MI franchise seriously ups the ante by creating some of the most thrilling action on screen this year. From an inspired prison break opening complete with Dean Martin’s music, to the final confrontation, director Brad Bird (RATATOUILLE, THE INCREDIBLES) creates excellent use of live action thrills.
The excitement begins as we find Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) jailed in a Moscow prison. With the help of CIA hottie Agent Jane Carter (Paula Patton) and the return of MI3 computer nerd - now newbie field agent Benji (Simon Pegg), Hunt escapes during a stirring riot sequence. The three IMF agents are soon assigned an impossible task of breaking into the Kremlin and stealing nuclear arms codes. Too bad for our agents, somebody with deadly intentions is looking for the same thing. When things go awry, the team is forced to go rogue with the help of CIA senior analyst Brandt (Jeremy Renner) as they embark on a globetrotting mission to overt nuclear war.
While the plot may be loaded with heroes, villains and other scoundrels at every turn, it works on nearly every level. That is not to say the script by Josh Appelbaum and André Nemec is going to be up for many awards, but they certainly offer up what is arguably the best film in the franchise. The only minor problem is that the action is so utterly intense that the few times it slows down a bit you can feel it. Luckily, you will soon be clenching your fists as the excitement reaches a fever pitch. This is especially true if you happen to catch MI4 in IMAX. GHOST PROTOCOL is the movie you want to go see in IMAX. It is outright spectacular as Tom Cruise hangs off the Burj Khalifa (the Dubai building which stands over 160 stories tall), to an almost dizzying effect.
It is a treat to see Tom Cruise back in action hero mode. He gives Ethan Hunt the charisma and intensity needed to really resonate with audiences. He is absolutely believable as a man who will go after what he believes to be the right thing at any cost. It also helps that he is surrounded by such a talented group of actors. Paula Patton (PRECIOUS) is not only gorgeous, but she is absolutely terrific as an agent with a vendetta. She certainly adds spice to Jane, yet she is much more than a pretty face. The always reliable Simon Pegg (HOT FUZZ, SHAUN OF THE DEAD) once again steals a scene or two from Cruise as the wisecracking Benji. And then there is Jeremy Renner (THE HURT LOCKER, the upcoming THE AVENGERS). Believe the hype as Renner is proving to be one of the most talented actors working today.
Brad Bird has given new life to MISSION IMPOSSIBLE, which seems like an impossible mission altogether. This action-packed roller coaster of a movie seamlessly pulls you in and doesn’t let go. On the rare occasion it slows down, it quickly sends your heart pounding and pulse racing again. With MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: GHOST PROTOCOL and FAST FIVE, it is nice to see action done right. Both of these two films breathe new life into their respective franchises, and hopefully MI4 will find the same box office success. I never thought I’d say this, but thanks to the sheer enjoyment MI4 brought, bring on MISSION IMPOSSIBLE 5.