Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
Director: Brad Bird
This is it folks, I feel that this film, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, is the film that takes everything that has worked in the previous films and merges them together to create a formula that will continue to work for this franchise. Do you like intense heart-pounding stunts done by Tom Cruise? Do you lie in emotional intrigue for your protagonist? Do you enjoy the team dynamic? Do you feel tension at world-ending stakes?
This film takes all those different components and puts them together in a package that shoots this to the top of my list in terms of Mission Impossibles. It is amazing that this film got made as a lot of series stop at a trilogy and even the ending of the third film felt like it could be the end of the franchise but I am glad they decided to continue telling these stories as there were so many cool things to still come.
Now before I completely gush over this film, I should point out my problems with it, as even though I gave it a 10/10, that does not mean it is flawless. It just means that it does almost everything right. For starters, the villain in this entry is a lot weaker than Owen Davian in the third movie, which I recently reviewed as well. He has very little personality and feels more like a generic terrorist, than the biggest threat that Ethan Hunt has faced.
His plan may be of the biggest scale up to this point, but the character has no charisma and that makes his plan seem dull. His lack of connection to Ethan also makes it that by the time we make it to the climactic fight, we feel no intensity as this villain doesn’t even really know who Ethan is.
While we have the situational tension, it would’ve been nice to have a more compelling character confrontation. My other negative is that I think the emotional conflict for Ethan is less impactful than in the last film. Like obviously, it is tough to top his wife being kidnapped, but honestly, it just feels like we have less connection to Ethan.
Now back to complementing this movie. I truly believe that Tom Cruise climbing the Burj Khalifa is probably the greatest stunt in film.
That is a huge statement, considering the stunts that have been performed, but I feel the scope and the weight of this type of undertaking will be studied as a hugely important moment for the art of stunts and stuntmen. It might not even be my favourite Mission Impossible stunt, but I do think it is probably the best stunt in the series.
I have a fear of heights and when Tom Cruise/Ethan Hunt steps out of that window and looks down, it is genuinely terrifying and tense. The fact that that stunt is real and done by Tom Cruise on the actual Burj Khalifa is incredible. You don’t see stunts of this scale in many movies, especially ones that don’t use CGI. Other than that amazing scene this film is filled with excellent moments and great action.
I think that the Kremlin break-in is a really fun sequence with lots of cool action and a cool gadget in the form of the fake wall. I really enjoy how we think that scene is just a fun heist with no huge consequences, but then all of a sudden there is a bomb that actually goes off and blows up part of the Kremlin, which is nuts.
Things go wrong in Mission Impossible, but not usually something that has mass casualties for civilians.It sets the tone that anything can happen in this movie. The opening of the movie with Ethan in prison is a great opening that is fun yet has tons of great action.
I also want to say that this is the funniest Mission Impossible with tons of comedy both physical and verbal that lands almost every time. A lot of the humour is sarcastic and witty, but I really like how the jokes were written. It worked well for me.
The cast is great as ever with the Tom Cruise, being the standout as Ethan Hunt once again, being the anchor for this franchise. He really knows how to make the audiences care for his character and feel what’s at stake at all times. His relationship with the rest of the cast is also important, and the way they play off of each other is really important.
It is also nice to see Simon Pegg return as Benji, where he gets to do even more as field agent this time around. His energy and excitement allows for comedy as well as making some scenes less intense and more fun. The relationship between Benji and Ethan is one of my favourite parts of this film, and it just continues to be expanded upon in the following two. Jeremy Renner as William Brandt is a good addition to the group, as he is the by-the-book agent who is almost the opposite of Ethan, always trying to stay between the lines instead of crossing them. He and Ethan have some good sparring scenes showing their different perspectives.
So there it is, I think that this film is the best Mission Impossible yet taking element that has worked so well in the other movies. This movie perfectly captures what I love about this series and puts it in the craziest package. I think this is probably the most rewatchable film in the series as you’re glued to the screen the whole way through. You are in awe of the stunts and you are also laughing along with the characters. I definitely think you should check this one out!