Director: Christopher McQuarrie
Cast: Tom Cruise, Simon Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson, Jeremy Renner, Ving Rhames, Alec Baldwin, Sean Harris
Plot: Ethan Hunt and his team square off against an organization similar to the IMF who want to turn against their former governments, while the CIA disbands the IMF and tries to bring Ethan into custody.
Review: It's quite impressive actually, watching Tom Cruise, arguably the biggest movie star in the world, do the things he does in the M:I films without the help of stunt doubles, at the age of 52. Say what you want about the man, but he is one committed action star.
In this latest instalment, the CIA has had enough of the IMF's reckless tactics in carrying out their assignments and pushes for them to be shut down and absorbed by the agency. It couldn't come at a worse time as Ethan Hunt discovers that a rogue organization called The Syndicate, made up of agents presumed dead all over the world, is doing everything possible to destroy the IMF and everything they had done. With no support and only a few friends left to turn to, Ethan finds an ally in the form of Ilsa Faust, a double agent who also works for the leader of The Syndicate, Solomon Lane.
In terms of action, director Christopher McQuarrie's effort is almost on par with Brad Bird's work in the last film. The most talked about airplane sequence that features Cruise hanging out on a plane taking off is actually at the film's beginning, and yes, it is awesome to actually see the man do that. From then on, the action doesn't let up as we are treated to car chases, hand-to-hand fights and yet another high security break-in, though the over-the-top complexity of the break-in makes it seem almost ridiculous and thus not as fascinating to watch as the famous ceiling hanger from the first film.
Cruise is again in his element as Ethan, and though his age is starting to show on his face, he still hasn't lost a step in becoming an action hero. Simon Pegg gets a lot more to do this time around as Benji. Just like he came into his own as Scotty in the Star Trek sequel, he does so here too as Benji gets in on the action with Cruise, leaving co-stars Jeremy Renner and Ving Rhames much less to do this time around. Rebecca Ferguson is pretty good as Ilsa, doing the action beats just as good as Cruise, while Alec Baldwin lends his commanding presence he's well known for as Hunley, the CIA director hell bent on apprehending Ethan.
The downsides come in the form of the film's villain played by Sean Harris. While Harris suits the role to a tee, the role itself isn't well written enough. The film's climax is also quite a letdown, which gives the previous film a slight edge over this one.
Overall, this Mission: Impossible instalment is a lot of fun from start to finish, even if it is not as good as Ghost Protocol. Recommended. (8/10)