Sorry for the length, but I didn't have time to write a short blog.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation - A Glorious Chase

It's hard to believe that Mission Impossible movies started in 1996 and Rogue Nation is number five in the series with Tom Cruise as IMF team leader Ethan Hunt.  The best thing about Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation is it does not pretend to be anything more than it is. Rogue Nation is a great action movie with wild chases, fun plot twists, a hero the audience likes, and exotic locations.

Okay, so maybe it is more than that.  Or maybe it is a little less than that.  I suppose  we could accuse the series of being a bit formulaic.  Ethan Hunt will get in trouble with our government.  Ethan will have to go it on his own.  Someone in the IMF or outside the IMF is trying to stop it.  Ethan will assemble his own crack team.  There will be THE woman for Ethan to understand, protect, and/or save. The fact is most movies of a particular genre or name are formulaic be they Marvel comic book movies, DC comic book movies, Bourne movies, or Bond movies. If you are going to condemn a big summer movie on that basis, you might as well quit going.

What make many, if not most of these movies work, is that they get their audience involved.  The fun thing about action movies is, duh, action.  Good action movies give us characters we love and root for. Great action movies even have stars who frequently do their own stunts. According to Simon Pegg who plays Benji in the movie, Cruise did the hanging on a flying airplane stunt not once but four times.  It is, by the way, the opening sequence of the movie and has little to do with the main plotline.
The cast of the movie is solid.  Ving Rhames returns a computer wiz, Luther Stickell, and Simon Pegg turns in his usual fun performance. Sean Harris is the perfect sociopathic villain.  Jeremy Renner as the head of the IMF plays well against his foil CIA head Alan Hunley, played by Alec Baldwin, who wants to end IMF and especially Ethan Hunt.

Most importantly though is THE woman, Lisa,  played by Rebecca Ferguson. What makes the character is more than the gratuitous swimsuit and underwear scenes that were included.  Lisa is smart, capable, and one tough agent.  While one of the twists is whether she is a good guy or a bad guy, she is Ethan Hunt's match in every way.  She is a great, action hero.  And, no I am not going to tell you if she is good or bad.

Go see Mission Impossible; Rogue Nation.  It's a genuine thrill ride and a solid genre movie.  It's just plain fun.