I finally got a chance to check out Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol last night. I can’t say I was too huge a fan of the earlier Mission Impossible flicks, but I certainly enjoyed them. Say what you will about Tom Cruise, but his movies are mostly pretty awesome.
Ghost Protocol fits this same bill. It’s mostly pretty awesome. The series is known for plot twist after plot twist, but the story stays on a pretty straight course this time around. Cruise plays super-spy Ethan Hunt, a disavowed field agent that is no longer recognized as active by the US Government. When the movie begins, Hunt finds himself an inmate at a particularly nasty Russian prison. It doesn’t take long before his former team busts out the gadgets to break him out. Thus begins one of the coolest aspects of the film – all the little gadgets that the Hunt and co. use. For example, during said prison break, Benji (played by the always-great Simon Pegg), uses a sonic cannon to blast a hole into a 4-foot thick concrete wall. Breaking down walls with science. There’s a greater metaphor there, I’m sure. But since Cruise had pretty much total creative control over this movie, I’m just glad he didn’t use Thetons to eat through the wall (look it up).
I don’t want to go through the plot in too much detail, but here’s a pretty brief rundown. After the prison escape, Hunt and his team learn of a Russian extremist with plans to launch a nuclear strike. Honestly, that’s really the entire plot. There are some wrinkles along the way, but in a nutshell, they are just trying to catch a bad guy. Luckily though, there genuinely are some epic action setpieces along the way. Among these setpieces, The Burj Khalifa, aka the world’s tallest building, ranks among the coolest I have ever seen. I’m not going to lie, when Hunt was scurrying up the side of the building, a building whose sides are sheer glass mind you, I felt genuinely tense. I can’t tell you the last time a movie had me on the ege of my seat like that. After that ordeal is finally over, then you get an intense foot/car chase through a sandstorm. Truly awesome stuff.
The movie comes to a solid ending, giving a nice resolution to the story. Also, it’s left a bit open-ended as to leave the chance of yet another sequel on the table. It’s not too blatant though, so I’m willing to forgive that. Overall, I really did enjoy the film. Acting-wise, it’s about what you would expect. Over the years, Cruise owns the part of Hunt. No surprises there. As I mentioned before, Simon Pegg was good as bumbling tech specialist Benji. He was a nice touch of comic relief in an otherwise full-on action movie. Jeremy Renner is just ok in this. He is pretty much a throw away character, though. Seemingly he is there just to be a potential replacement for Cruise if the Mission Impossible film franchise does indeed continue. Lastly, Paula Patton plays the obligatory female team member, and she is totally forgettable. I also think she has the manliest face of the entire cast, but hey, maybe that’s just me. Here, look:
In any case, I thought the movie was great. It’s not winning any best picture awards, but for what it was, it was great. If you are a guy, you will love it. If you are a girl, you will probably like it.
Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, I rate thee 4 out of 5 stars.