Monday, 9 January 2012

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (2011)

In the 4th installment of the Mission Impossible series, Ethan Hunt and his team are racing against time to track down a dangerous terrorist named Hendricks, who has gained access to Russian nuclear launch codes and is planning a strike on the United States. An attempt by the team to stop him at the Kremlin ends in a disaster, with an explosion causing severe destruction to the Kremlin and the IMF being implicated in the bombing, forcing the President to invoke Ghost Protocol, under which the IMF is disavowed, and will be offered no help or backup in any form. Undaunted, Ethan and his team chase Hendricks to Dubai, and from there to Mumbai, but several spectacular action sequences later, they might still be too late to stop a disaster. © IMDb

I do not consider myself as the great fan of Mission Impossible franchise. The first part, released in 1996 (!) was action at its purest, with the small intrigue set up by the question “Who betrayed the group?” and the soundtrack which pretty soon was installed on 95% of mobile phones as the alarm clock signal. Since then Ethan Hunt became iconic spy, even though the franchise overall was going downhill. The second part was an absolute failure, already too surreal for a serious action movie but still not surreal enough for Matrix-style movie. The third part improved a little bit but generally it was still laughable.

Little surprise, I expected the 4th installment to be at approximately the same boring level. My low expectations were even reinforced by the fact that Tom Cruise was getting older and, as evident in Knight and Day, where the stunts were repetitive and boring. However, I was walking out of the cinema with the smile; Mr. Cruise managed to beat the expectations.

No doubt, the plot is silly and, from time to time, even stupid. Seriously, terrorist acting alone is trying to launch the nuclear attack? Why not mammoths waking up after the Ice Age and trying to crush all the world capitals? Do not expect the depth of the plot out of this movie. Even the jokes that were included to keep the plot together will entertain only those who have not seen the other parts of the franchise. But this movie was created to amuse us by the dynamic action, wasn’t it?

And the action part is something that is done well in this movie. I was watching it in IMAX, and the adventure outside the Burj Khalifa is breathtaking when shown on the huge screen. Faster heart rate and round eyes are guaranteed when the screen is large enough or when one is too afraid of the height. But even if we do not consider the episode, there are quite a few stunning scenes, chases and fights to keep the viewer busy holding on their chairs tight.

It would be pretty weird to expect some outstanding performance out of the cast. Tom Cruise is simply doing his job, and doing it pretty well – it requires little acting talent but a lot of effort in performing the stunts. Simon Pegg is always good, he is very convincing yet again as the computer geek (Paul was the movie where he trained the role, I believe). Paula Patton as “the Hunt’s girl” needed only good figure, which she has, just watch out the party in Mumbai. Jeremy Renner who played William Brandt requires a line as well. He was absolutely up to speed with Tom Cruise, perfect action figure, I was surprised (in a good sense) with his performance. There are rumors that he is going to replace Tom Cruise in future installments of the Mission Impossible, and I can stay reassured – he will be a good spy.

VERDICT: Much better than the previous ones, breathtaking action featuring forever young Tom Cruise
WATCH: if you want to give your brains a rest and simply want some dynamic stupid action.

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