Mission Impossible is now seven movies in and still these movies are superbly done. When you compare that to other large franchise’s like Fast that have turned into completely different entities over the years. Mission Impossible has maintained the same tone and excitement that has had fans hooked for years.
Even Tom Cruise coming into his 60’s has not changed the series, his stunts are bigger and better than ever. Cruise’s latest motorcycle base jump has been heavily promoted and it didn’t disappoint. It’s a common phrase to say that you “have” to see a movie on the big screen, but seriously watch this movie on the biggest fucking theater screen that you can find!
As Cruise is lining his motorcycle up for the jump, wide shots of the mountainous surroundings really give you the sheer scale of what he is about to do. As he launches himself and the motorcycle off the cliff face there were gasps in theater and that is not only credit to Cruise’s bravery but the incredible camera work, it puts you right in the scene and my stomach dropped. It genuinely made me woozy watching his initial plummet and that is something I rarely experience in a theater.
But what’s also incredible after watching that stunt is that it interconnects with the next phase beautifully, as Cruise glides his parachute onto a runaway train, what comes next is just as astounding, there is another immaculate action sequence with the train heading to disaster, Ethan Hunt & Grace (Hayley Atwell) scramble for safety, its superbly shot and includes a beautiful zero gravity sequence.
The combination of Cruise’s cliff jump and the whole train sequence intertwining makes Dead Reckoning’s last act possibly the best action I’ve ever seen in a theater, there were moments when I realised I was holding my breath. I take my hat off to Tom Cruise & Christopher McQuarrie, we say it every time…but how are you going to top that.
The main antagonist of the film is not of the usual irk, usually our villains come in the form of disturbed men hell bent on destroying the world with a dirty bomb or some kind of virus. This time however the villain is a hyper-advance artificial intelligence know as ‘The Entity’. It started out targeting global banks and defence systems. Before moving on to be able to infiltrate any security system, even manipulating a Russian sub, in a clever opening pre-credits scene.
The Entity enlists an old enemy of Hunt’s in Gabriel (Esai Morales). As both good and bad parties travel the world in an attempt to bring two halves of a key together. The key is the only thing that is capable of unlocking the source code of The Entity and the only way to either gain control of it or destroy it.
Ethan assembles his team, with the return of familiar faces such as Benji (Simon Pegg), Luther (Ving Rhames) & Ilsa (Rebecca Ferguson). The team also recruit an international thief in Hayley Atwell’s Grace and we see the return of Vanessa Kirby as the arms dealing White Widow. Pom Klementieff also joins the cast as Paris. An almost silent, deadly and impeccably dressed assassin, she’s bloodthirsty and somewhat reminiscent of a Bond villain, she is also chasing down Ethan Hunt.
The film covers some fantastic locations including an Arabian desert where Hunt locates Ilsa, it even goes full Italian job as Ethan & Grace storm around the streets of Rome in a little yellow Fiat 500, being chased by a bulldozer of a truck driven by Pom Klementieff.
A mission Impossible film wouldn’t be complete without out the traditional Tom Cruise sprinting at full speed sequence and the face changing rubber masks all which feature plenty. The film even adds a nice comedy touch as Shea Whigham’s agent runs around an airport hooking his finger in people mouths in an attempt to unmask Hunt and Benji’s accidental BBQ of one Hunts masks being quite comical.
In the last few years the action genre has gained a new respect Top Gun: Maverick was hailed as the saviour of the theatrical industry by Steven Spielberg. Currently action flicks are keeping box office numbers above water and Mission: Impossible Dead Reckoning Part One is no exception it deserves every bit of the same success.
You can watch Mission: Impossible Dead Reckoning Part One in theaters now.