MOVIE REVIEW: Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol

Film: Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
Starring: Tom Cruise
Directed by: Brad Bird

Some say the third time is a charm, but Director Brad Bird has made a hell of a case for it actually being the fourth attempt that gets it right. Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol” or as most will refer to it, “Mission Impossible 4,” takes an already energetic franchise (literally) to new heights, packing enough slick visuals and big bangs to overshadow a weak script and all notions of rationality just in time for the holidays.

Somehow being younger than last time we saw him, Tom Cruise returns as Agent Ethan Hunt in the latest edition to the MI franchise, this time bringing along Sean Of The Dead‘s Simon Pegg, The Town‘s Jeremy Renner, and Precious‘ Paula Patton to round out his team. As expected, Pegg portrays the tech-geek, Renner is the “agent who has seen too much,” and Patton struggles with her emotions, but the cookie-cutter feel of their characters is quickly forgiven as the story begins to unfold in all its stunt-packed glory.

After escaping from a Russioa prison, Hunt quickly finds himself on the trail of Kobalt, a globe-trotting terrorist with a flair for nuclear war. Following an attempt to stop Kobalt that goes awry, Hunt’s team and the entire IMF agency are given orders to begin “Ghost Protocol,” leaving them with no help, no funds, and only their innocence to gain. It may sound like a rough situation, but it is pretty much the exact same situation Hunt finds himself in with every film, only now there is a team of A & B list celebrities along for the ride (and oh, what a hell of a ride it is).

From a purely “eye candy” perspective, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol is everything a cinephile could ask for in an action film. There are lots of explosions, tons of cool gadgets, and at least a couple pretty girls along the way, but things really come off the rails as soon as characters open their mouths and attempt to convince audiences that Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec’s script is anything short of hokey. From beginning to end, nearly every sequence plays out with the most basic of action film setups, including an entire storyline revolving around “that one time I messed up and could not forgive myself,” and it begins to wear on the viewer far too early in the film. That said, Brad Bird’s keen visual eyes gives viewers plenty to keep them entertained when dialogue fails and further, he keeps scenes of pure conversation to a minimum, making it nearly impossible to ever be bored.

Though flawed, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol proves to be the strongest entry in the action franchise since its debut and offers plenty of spectacle to keep audiences wowed throughout the Winter. Brad Bird has produced a film that is both exhilarating and touching, even in the face of a weak script, and Tom Cruise is nothing short of badass. Let your mind (and sense of reason) relax this weekend and enjoy this big budget romp. You will not be sorry.

Review written by: James Shotwell

James Shotwell
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