Mission Impossible shows rivals how a summer blockbuster is supposed to look
LOVE him or loathe him, Tom Cruise could teach stars half his age a thing or two about what constitutes a great summer crowd-pleaser.
Far from running out of steam, the fifth instalment in the Mission: Impossible series is an enjoyable reboot and proof that super-sleuth Ethan Hunt has a lot more to offer.
Cruise, now 53, can still cut it as an action star and his love of audacious stunt work is again evident here.
He, his co-stars and director Christopher McQuarrie have an innate understanding of what makes an entertaining
You’ve got the script which cleverly combines action, a sense of urgency and humour, and gives the supporting stars a chance to shine. Relative newcomer Rebecca
Ferguson fares particularly well in this regard.
You’ve got the sense of knowing, inclusive humour that nevertheless falls short of parodying the actual film.
You’ve got the ridiculously ambitious challenges that have made M:I so successful and, crucially, you’ve got The Tom Cruise Run, an action motion so nifty that Cruise should patent it as a workout.
Following an opening sequence involving Hunt and — what else — a plane in mid take-off, we learn that MIF has been disbanded by the government, wary of Hunt’s knack for doing things his way.
But with a shady new group called The Syndicate threatening global terror, Hunt has no notion of hitting the golf course and is soon captured by one of their top men, Solomon Lane (Sean Harris).
In his efforts to take them on, Hunt is joined by his posse (Renner, Pegg and Ving Rhames). He gets his butt kicked by the sassy Isla (Ferguson, excellent) but then she helps him escape. Just who is she working for, and can she be trusted?
There are some pacing problems. Rogue Nation is slow to build and as it reaches its finale it gets tied up in a couple of plot twists too many. It’s almost too busy a film.
But the cast are having such fun it’s infectious, and the most outstanding scenes are up there with the best the M:I series has ever produced.
Cruise acquits himself well, but the movie’s real revelation is Ferguson, sexy, alluring and tough as a mysterious female agent. She’s given the screen time and does not waste it.
Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation (12A) 4/5 STARS
THE VERDICT: The M:I series gets a reboot thanks to some great action scenes and a strong cast.