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MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - Fallout
When it comes to secret service, spy or government agency movies (from Bond to Bourne, and naturally the M:I franchise), the ultimate impetus for a narrative filled with action, suspense, close calls and nail biting moments is always the scenario of nefarious forces getting their hands on nuclear weapons (and fully intent on using them). As the sub-title suggests, that is the case here (also obviously having a double meaning in 'fallout' within the agency and consequences of certain actions).
With these plans put into irreversible motion, Ethan Hunt lands in the middle of it, his loyalty and even his sanity called into question, but moreover its subtext boiling down to a sense of morality and the conundrum of the greater good - would you let your friend (or a stranger) die in order to save millions…? While another believes you need to eradicate millions to achieve peace…
With several key players acting as cogs in a complex machine leading to the retrieval of these plutonium assets (from an arms dealer and broker, to nuclear scientist and the terrorists), it is not going to be an easy or straight forward exercise. Not by a long shot, with the quick and decisive physical and violent actions kicked into motion leading to top notch action scenes from car, motorcycle and foot chases through Paris, to London and Kashmir for bomb defusing and one of the best helicopter chase / crash scenes ever. Not to mention the amazingly choreographed fist fight sequences and literal cliffhangers. Oh, and of course there's some double crossing and misdirection afoot to ramp up the tension with plans thrown into disarray.
The real stunt feats executed by Tom Cruise does make a difference when watching these high octane movies, with the knowledge that he truly braved these life threatening situations. Whether it is a testimony to his hardcore work ethic in getting the best shots possible, a deep seeded need to be admired or part of his psychosis that has him so deeply entrenched in Scientology - it doesn't reality matter, because when you sit down to watch this two and a half hours of top notch action, you want to be entertained without needing to analyze the motives behind it (which at the end of the day below the surface is more concerned about that first opening weekend numbers than how many people left the cinema with a smile or cathartic vicarious release).
He's getting older, but with it Cruise seems to be getting bolder (his faith in the safety team needing to be rock solid in pulling off some of these eye-popping moments).
Attached to Cruise in both a writing and directing capacity for over a decade (starting with the screenplay of Valkyrie), Christopher McQuarrie's gritty but slick directing style from Jack Reacher and the previous Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation translates very well into Fallout.
While the 3D doesn't do that much save for a few set-pieces placing the viewer inside the action, it is quite a spectacle to watch in the IMAX format.
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