In an industry already chock-full of action blockbusters trying to stand out with young actors trying to be the next big thing, Mission: Impossible Fallout does exactly that with a lead actor who’s older than both my parents. Tom Cruise proves once again that he’s at the top of his game, still oozing with just as much swagger as he did over 10 years ago when the first Mission: Impossible film was released. The stakes, the storytelling, and the stunts are taken to new heights in this film, and it’s so much better than what I expected.
Tom Cruise reprises his role as Ethan Hunt. He brings his A-game, pushing the character to new levels both physically and emotionally. He even broke his ankle during a chase scene. The supporting cast is great as well. Returning characters such as Benji (Simon Pegg), Luther (Ving Rhames), Ilsa (Rebecca Ferguson), Hunley (Alec Baldwin), and Julia (Michellle Monaghan) help push the story and Ethan’s character arc, while also bringing levity to what is otherwise a gritty film. The villains in this film are superb, providing a real challenge for the titular hero. Sean Harris returns as Solomon Lane, who matches Ethan’s wit with cunning. Henry Cavill steals the spotlight with an imposing stage presence as Ethan’s physical match.
Henry Cavill steals the spotlight with an imposing stage presence as Ethan’s physical match.
The Mission: Impossible films are known for their literally death-defying set pieces. Fallout is the 6th entry in this franchise, and it proves that even after over 10 years, the franchise is still the gold standard for not only spy movies but also action blockbusters, surpassing even James Bond. With every new installment, it seems as if they want to do something more dangerous and exciting. In Ghost Protocol, they made Cruise climb the Burj Khalifa. In Ghost Nation, he had to hang off the side of an airplane and hold his breath for what seemed like forever in a thrilling underwater set piece. This film somehow puts those insane feats to shame, as, in this new one, Ethan Hunt had to jump out of an airplane into a storm and then, later on, hang onto a helicopter. There are so many other superhuman things Cruise pulled off in this film, but you’ll have to see it for yourself to believe it.
Director Christopher McQuarrie did an outstanding job with this film. This really is the best Mission: Impossible film so far, and that’s saying something since the others are amazing. If anything, this franchise gets better over time. The fights are exhilarating; the underground world of spies is ever evolving; the stunts are amazing. I cannot wait for what other crazy shenanigans they have in store for future films, but for now, we have one of the best action films ever to enjoy.
by Miguel Fermin, guest movie critic