Throwing stuff at the internet to see what sticks
Wednesday, January 11, 2012 M .Ovie Reviews: Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
Okay, here's how big a dork I am: the only reason I was remotely interested in seeing MI:GP at all was because I'm a fan of the director, Brad Bird, who previously directed The Iron Giant and The Incredibles. Both cartoons, yes. I was kind of expecting another one, to be honest, but it didn't turn out that way. This is actually one of the more exciting action movies I've seen in a while.
There are a couple of interesting things about the way this movie is being marketed. First, there's no number in the title, which is usually a sign of a tired franchise with nothing left to say. Second, it's implied that this movie represents some kind of passing of the torch from Tom Cruise's Ethan Hunt character to whomever Jeremy Renner is playing. Actually, neither could be further from the truth.
I can understand why a studio might want to downplay the couch-jumper's role, given that he's had a few PR missteps in the past few years that have left him not quite as popular as he used to be. But no, it turns out that this is very much an Ethan Hunt joint, with his hair, moves, chronic acrophilia, and messiah complex on full display. Renner steals a moment or two (and at one point a gun) from him, but it's Cruise control all the way. Feel free to kick me in the face for writing that.
As for the state of the franchise, I liked this movie a lot better than the second one (I can't speak to the third one, which I skipped). There's the obligatory globetrotting chase for an internationally vital McGuffin, but as always, what that is never seems as interesting as all the crap they go through to get it. Including that sequence with Ethan dangling from the ridiculously tall Burj Khalifa in Dubai. Even more shocking than that stunt is the scene immediately preceding, where Ethan expresses actual doubt that he can pull it off. That's almost a more impressive feat than jumping out a window a quarter-mile in the air. And then there's the sense that the world we live in is like a life-sized Disneyland, with spies able to go "backstage" at any given moment and use seemingly innocuous items like pay phones and train cars as vital resources that have been placed there for their express use. It's a little Get Smart at times, but you're having enough fun that you don't mind much.
Simon Pegg was also a nice surprise. Not that I expected him to suck, but that I don't think I knew he was going to be in it. He gets all the good jokes, of course, including one great spy-tech-based sight gag inside the Kremlin. Some chick I've never heard of rounds out the IMF team, with the primary job of looking uptight and not towering over Ethan Hunt too much.
Febrifuge and I saw it on an IMAX screen, which I would recommend for enjoying Bird's kinetic camera work to greatest effect. Because dude rocks it. Could have done without the eighty-foot close-ups of the dude with the broken nose, though.
A success overall, but you should probably leave the movie when Ving Rhames does. After that it gets pretty irritating. posted by M. Giant 1:17 PM 3 comments
So, I guess this livescore person had some kind of webcam to see the dress you were wearing while you typed this entry, which I gather was gorgeous. Let us know what Trash and M. Edium think of the London fabric shops when you get there.