Tom Cruise shows up a fourth time in the role of IMF agent Ethan Hunt, setting out on another stirring adventure involving all sorts of cool and clever espionage gadgets, which aren’t implausible, just impossible, and that’s the whole point.
Brad Bird‘s Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol is an entertaining, exciting and fun action picture that offers us just the right amount of humour, action, suspense and cleavage. It is a skillful effort from a skillful director, and I’m glad he’s still got it.
As the film is getting started, we see that Hunt is in a prison in Moscow for reasons which will be revealed later. Busting him out are agents Jane Carter (Paula Patton) and Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg), who require him on their mission to infiltrate the Moscow Kremlin and obtain some sort of secret files on a Swedish politician named Kurt Hendricks (Michael Nyqvist) who has nuclear war in mind and bombs the Kremlin during the IMF’s missions to get his hand on a launch control device. All he needs now is the codes.
The codes are to be given to Hendrick’s assistant Winström (Samuli Edelmann) by French assassin Sabine Moreau (Léa Seydoux) at the Burj Khalafi in Dubai, so this is where the team goes next, now joined by William Brandt (Jeremy Renner), chief analycist of the IMF secetary played by Tom Wilkinson. Their mission is too complex for me to explain, but trust me when I say that watching the scene where Ethan Hunt climbs the Burj Khalifa is a breathtaking experience and I am thankful there was no 3D or other fakeness there to ruin it. The climax of the film takes the team to Mumbai, India. A fight inside some sort of garage is more exciting than it may sound.
Throughout it all, the team is being followed by a Russian cop named Anatoly Sidorov (Vladimir Mashkov), who believes that Hunt and his team are to blame for the fall of the Kremlin. Ving Rhames also appears in a brief cameo that will please fans of the previous films.
As per usual, the vast array of conveluted techniques and futuristic gadgets the team uses are just as pointless and overly complex as they are cool. I don’t really care if their stuff is plausible or even nessecary; as long as their equipment is tremendously clever and cool, it isn’t going to matter a bit.
It should come as no surprise to anyone that I found the scene where Tom Cruise is jumping around on the Burj Khalifa to be the most enthralling one in the film. Especially when you consider not only that Cruise did all those insane stunts himself, but also that the film crew were apparently having a hard time getting him to stop, because he was just enjoying himself so much. I think it was director Brad Bird who said in an interview that getting Cruise up there was much easier than getting him to come back down.
I love this vertigo-inducing image of Tom Cruise just chilling on top of the Burj’s spire. Tom Cruise has been famous for over 20 years now, and he definitely still got it. I still think his best film is Magnolia but surely this must be his most insane performance.
Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol is a highly enjoyable and stirring film with good action, good humour, good gadgets, good cinematography and, again, astounding stuns performed by Mister Cruise himself. Some of the computer generated visuals, such as the Kremlin explosion, were nothing really special, but it is the real stuff that makes this movie so entertaining. Need I mention the Burj Khalifa sequence yet again?