Quick Reaction: Mission Impossible – Ghost Protocol

After three Mission: Impossible movies, all with varying degrees of success, do we really want a fourth one?  As it turns out, yes we do!  In fact, based on this latest movie, I’m ready for the fifth Mission: Impossible.

However let’s discuss what’s in theaters now.  The latest in the series, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, starts out with our hero Ethan Hunt (Cruise) being broken out of a Moscow prison.  Hunt is broken out because the world needs saving from a crazy person bent on setting off nuclear bombs (Michael Nyquist) and I suppose no one else was available. 

So it’s up to Hunt and his team (Simon Pegg, Paula Patton, and a late arriving Jeremy Renner) to trot around the globe from the Kremlin in Moscow to Mumbai, chasing down our would be terrorist.   Oh, one catch.  The IMF (Impossible Missions Force, yeah really, that what it means)  has been disbanded so they’re on their own here.   Which kind of sounds like every other M:I movie.  Except this one does better than the previous three.  Much better.

For the first time in the M:I series we see Hunt working with his team (Simon Pegg, Paula Patton, and a late arriving Jeremy Renner) for the entirety of the movie.    This is a welcome change.  As is Hunt’s latest team itself.  We saw Pegg in a small role in the third Mission, here his role is expanded and it’s for the better.    Pegg is a funny guy and is perfect for the comic relief.   Patton is required female member and provides additional intensity (and a nice cat fight as well.  Those are always welcome).  Renner enters later in the film and is somewhat counterpart to Cruise.

The action set pieces are impressive and all work wonderfully.  From scaling the world’s tallest building in Dubai, to a foot chase in a sandstorm, and a fight in a ridiculously high-tech parking lot, there is no disappointment in the action department.

For some reason I’ve sorta ignored the IMAX format for movies.  When the IMAX theater in Fort Lauderdale opened in 1992 I was pretty excited about.  I saw a number of documentaries there but when regular features started converting to the format I was indifferent about it.   That is, until I saw Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol.

I had read that a section of this movie was filmed in the IMAX format and I knew that section was a sequence that takes place on the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai.   The idea of seeing Tom Cruise dangling off a building on a five-story screen was too much to resist.   And the IMAX did not disappoint.  Ghost Protocol is a fun and exciting movie in any format, but if you can I would strongly suggest you seek out the giant IMAX screen to maximize the experience.

Grade: A+

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