Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (2015)

Run time : 133:00

CBFC Rating : U/A

The Mission: Impossible movies have been mostly a high quality franchise since 1996. Ever since Tom Cruise created the TV show reboot, we have been greeted with mostly great and innovative action movies. I love this franchise because every movie has its own feel (because they always change directors) and every mission feels new and more exciting than the last. In case you don’t know, this movie once again follows Tom cruise aka Ethan Hunt and his team as they must eradicate the rogue organisation known as the syndicate or the Anti-IMF. Based off the trailers for the movie, I thought I may have seen too much of it’s best moments but in reality, I only got glimpses. So many things surprised me about this flick and I have nothing but very positive things to say.

After the IMF basically saved the planet from World War III, one of the best things that movie does is not making it an end of the world mission again. The Syndicate was an imposing force but it felt more personal because they were taking the battle to the IMF instead of vice versa. Subtly one of the best parts of the movie is the villain played by Sean Harris. While not overly memorable like Phillip Seymour Hoffman in M:I III, he provided a legitimate threat and was never a dumb cliché villain. His plan was actually so convincingly intelligent that I actually had doubts that our heroes could prevail. The Rogue Nation could have easily have come off as a “League of Shadows” type organisation but instead they used real wits while also being a physical threat.

Director and Writer Christopher McQuarrie did a phenomenal job with both action sequences and well placed comedy. I thought McQuarrie’s last film jack Reacher was just okay but any doubts I had about him directing this movie were vanished immediately. Unlike the other M:I instalments, every action scene in this movie is memorable and amazing. Ghost Protocol had the amazing building scene but the end action scene is very forgettable. In Rogue Nation, every action scene from the plane scene to the opera to the bike/car chase to the underwater heist were incredible and amazingly directed. Especially the underwater scene which was my personal favourite scene because the suspense was fantastic and visually it was spectacular. The comedy, especially from Simon Pegg, was used superbly because it didn’t beat the audience over the head with it. The subtle humor from basically every character brought so much and never stepped over the line where it was unbelievable that something would be said or done during a serious scene. Simply amazing work by McQuarrie.

The cast in this movie is the best we have ever gotten in the franchise. Obviously , not enough can be said about how amazing Tom Cruise in these movies. Think what you will of him in real life but on screen he is truly captivating and that’s all that really matters. The real stunts that he did were insane and no other actor of his calibre would ever do that plane takeoff. For a 53 year old man, his work is unprecedented. Simon Pegg is great once again as Ethan Hunt’s tech savvy side kick. While he is still very much the comedy center of the movie, we got a lot more emotion and dramatic work from him and he did a marvellous job. Jeremy Renner returns as William Brand and although he didn’t do as much physical action as he did in Ghost protocol, I like the character he has become and how he fits in with the team. Also, Renner has some of the best comedic timing. Ving Rhames once again returns and he has so much more to do in this movie. His chemistry with Jeremy Renner was unexpectedly brilliant and was actually one of the better things in the movie.

Additionally , I was gracefully surprised by Alec Baldwin’s character. I had pre-existing emotions to believe that he would be a walking cliché of a character but I was surprised as to as interesting and important his character was. Also, Rebecca Ferguson has the breakout performance of the year so far. She brought a whole new level to the story and she wasn’t the forced love interest that she could have been. While I can’t say too much without spoiling it but her character has many twists and turns that are so original that I had no idea what was going to happen.

Originality is a huge factor into why I love this movie. I love the cool gadgets like the Flute Gun and masks, which had always been staple to the franchise. I also loved how this movie keeps you guessing. There were many  time when I thought the movie was going to go a certain way but then veered off into a better and more interesting direction. The only real negative thing I have about this movie is that there is one scene that I felt dragged a bit and I think the movie was a little long but all in all, Rogue Nation was one of the year’s best movies so far. I can’t wait for Mission: Impossible 6.

My Rating : 3.5/5 Stars

PS: Director of Photography Robert Elswit (an Oscar winner for There Will Be Blood) is marvellous with his razor-sharp photography in car/bike chase scene.

– Ashok Reddy

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