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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Fishing in the Discount Bin: Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol

It's that time of the week again, for Fishing in the Discount Bin.  Isn't it weird how things are lining up?  Because of movie schedules, DVD release schedules, and my self-imposed schedule on this blog, I seem to be hitting all the big blockbusters from this time last year.  Case in point:  Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, which came out on December 16, 2011 -- almost two weeks shy of its theatrical release.  This entry is dated in my notes as having been written on May 4, 2012.

Gonna make this one quick because I'm sleepy.

As I blogged before when counting down to this film's release, Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol probably doesn't seem like the kind of movie I'd go nuts for.  But I was excited for it because of the talent behind the camera.  It was directed by Brad Bird.  Bird spent most of the 1990s working on The Simpsons, then he left to go make my favourite movie, The Iron Giant.  From there, his old classmate John Lassetter convinced him to set up shop at Pixar, where Bird made The Incredibles and Ratatouille.  After the success of Ratatouille, Bird wanted to try his hand at directing a live-action film.  Unable to find backing for his historical epic, 1906, he started looking for other directing jobs.  Finally, Tom Cruise and JJ Abrams figured he was the right guy to do the next Mission: Impossible film.  I was really excited to see what Brad Bird would be doing in live action, just as I've been excited about all his films.

Tom Cruise is back as superspy Ethan Hunt, who's busted out of a Russian prison after an exchange in Budapest goes wrong.  Hunt's mission - should he chose to accept it - is to break into the Kremlin and get files pertaining to a terrorist known as Cobalt.  But, of course, while in the Kremlin, Cobalt decides to blow the place up, and Hunt and his team are framed for the terrorist act.  The US Government then initiates "ghost protocol," where Hunt and his team are blamed for the attack, the entire IMF is dissolved and disavowed, but Hunt and his team are allowed to go rogue to find Cobalt.  Hunt and his team then chase Cobalt around the world, one step behind Cobalt, but one step ahead of the Russian spies who blame Hunt for the attack.

Cobalt's scheme:  nuke the planet, believing that the attack will strengthen humanity and lead to the next step in evolution.  You know, standard spy movie super-villain stuff.

On Hunt's team are Jane Carter, who blames herself for that Budapest operation going south and has a vendetta against one of Cobalt's troops; Benji Dunn, last seen in #3 as an analyst and is now a field agent, eager for his first mission, and Brandt, and analyst who is thrust into the field when everything goes crazy,  but does have a shadowy connection to Hunt's past.

This is a very good action movie.  It moves along really quick...a little too quick at times, as it's difficult to keep track of who's doing what and what they're chasing after.  The action sequences are amazing, though.  I really wish I saw this in theaters in IMAX, because everyone raved about the Dubai sequence in IMAX.  Oh, yeah, that's the film's signature action scene, when Tom Cruise has to scale the Burj Dubai...the world's tallest building.  It is a very good sequence.

But yeah.  It's a good action film.

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