Director: Christopher McQuarrie
Writers: Christopher McQuarrie, Drew Pearce, Bruce Geller
Stars: Tom Cruise, Simon Pegg, Jeremy Renner, Rebecca Ferguson, Ving Rhames, Sean Harris
Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation is the 5th instalment of the Mission: Impossible franchise and has Tom Cruise undoubtedly return as Ethan Hunt. Ethan Hunt's latest adventures force him to pursue a ghost like organisation known as "The Syndicate" that is staging mass acts of tactical terrorism around the world.
As far as summer action movies go, this may be one of the best this year. Christopher McQuarrie is better known as a writer, of which he won an Oscar with The Usual Suspects. But with his recent directorial success with Jack Reacher (2012) which I among few really enjoyed, I was really excited and intrigued to see what way he would take this successful franchise. The writing of MI5 (Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation) is of course heavily influenced by Christopher McQuarrie, with the twists and turns that wind through the length of the movie left me with my eyes fixed on the screen. And with Tom Cruise ageing fast, the writers and the directors really have to consider how much he could do physically with regards to his age, but did they? No, and I'm so glad they didn't.
Tom Cruise continues on his run of great action flicks, with MI5's predecessor Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (2011), Jack Reacher (2012), Oblivion (2013), and the surprisingly great Edge of Tomorrow (2014) and now this? You can tell Hollywood are milking every last action movie out of Tom Cruise before he decides to pack up shop and lean to a more mellow style of movie. From the get go Christopher McQuarrie has Tom Cruise, hanging on the outside of an airborne military jet, no green screen, no CGI, all Tom Cruise. Tom Cruise at the age of 53 is doing all of his own stunts and putting his body in great physical danger more now than he ever has, and it's brilliant to see, not only because stunts carried out by actors themselves show dedication and bravery, but because it's Tom Cruise. I don't think any current actor runs as fast as Tom Cruise, I mean whenever that guy takes off you know you're in for an adrenaline fuelled sequence. Thank goodness there is no shaky cam either, very little to be seen in this movie, especially in the best motorbike chase scene I've ever seen. The motorbike scene which is featured in the trailer is so wonderfully directed, point of view shots and the camera traversing in-between cars is exhilarating to see, although this scene is unfortunately short lived this was crafted excellently.
Tom Cruise if you haven't guessed already I was greatly impressed by, delivering that gritty, fearless and badass persona establishes him once again as one of the greatest action heroes in cinema. Simon Pegg is also a delight, with his brilliant Britishness and witty humour that creates that break from overwhelming action that some people need. After coming out of MI5 it hit me how many projects Simon Pegg has got his hands on, with his involvement in Star Trek, Star Wars and of course Mission: Impossible, leave some of the best movie franchises on his Resume. Rebecca Ferguson delivers that typical mysterious and seductive female that we see in most spy and secret service movies, so there was no real surprise there, although Ving Rhames's performance is all to short lived but thats just my opinion as I'm a huge fan of Ving Rhames.
However, speaking in terms of acting, MI5 does fall short of some things. The villain while he was sinister and odd looking, I didn't feel as much in fear as I have done by the previous franchise villains, for example Phillip Seymour Hoffman's character in MI3, he was powerful on screen, intimidating and ruthless in acts of violence and really established himself as the best Mission: Impossible villain. But all of those characteristics excellently portrayed by Phillip Seymour Hoffman is where Sean Harris really fell short. Not only his performance but his motive behind his plans to cause terrorism, throughout the movie I didn't understand him and why he wanted to do the things he'd planned.
Whilst the writing was good in incorporating new and old characters into the Mission: Impossible universe, there were some pacing issues that I felt were prominent in the film. Sometimes characters would just show up out of the blue or jump from one location to the other which began to distort the pace. I know that Christopher McQuarrie is known for his twists but there may have been a few too many which led me to wonder if some of them are believable, whilst there were some great twists and turns there were one or two that I didn't entirely buy.
With these minor faults aside the Mission: Impossible franchise is definitely on an up with success after success. With Mission: Impossible 6 confirmed already shows that they're selling them while they're hot, and proves the success of Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation. This summer is proving to be a great summer filled with critically acclaimed and fan beloved movies and MI5 adds to that collection. My Blu Ray shopping list for Christmas just got bigger.