“I love what I do. I take great pride in what I do. And I can’t do something halfway, three-quarters, nine-tenths. If I’m going to do something, I go all the way.” –Tom Cruise
If you’re looking for a summation of Tom Cruise’s work ethic there it is. As he has proven time and time again, Fallout being no different, he does the most he can with each project he takes on for the entertainment of the audiences that want to see him. He’s grateful for them and his effort shows this. Mission: Impossible-Fallout is pure summer blockbuster at its finest and proves yet again that simplicity in story does not have to mean mundanity. The basic story of missing plutonium is one we’ve all heard many times before but it still very much acts as the proper kind of macguffin that pulls the characters along so we can see them do what they do best. We want to see Cruise perform crazy stunts and we want to see Hunt and his team defeat the bad guys with only one second left on the doomsday device. We want spectacle with likeable characters and Fallout not only succeeds at this but it is one of the best action films of 2018 and one of the best Mission films to date.
In the second half of summer and the sixth installment of a franchise that shows no signs of stopping, Fallout proves that if the right people are involved on both sides of the camera magic can happen no matter how many films deep a franchise is.
When Mission: Impossible 2 came out it appeared this property was a horse with a broken leg and no hopes of mending. As the gun was being placed against the poor animal’s head JJ Abrams swooped in and saved a franchise breathing new energy into it with the unlikely sequel Mission: Impossible 3. It showed just what Cruise is capable of and more importantly what these films were capable of with as I said the right people behind it. And as each subsequent sequel has been released the strength of the entire franchise has grown as well. If anything these movies bring about the question of Cruise being human or not. His stunt work is nothing short of brazen mastery of a craft molded only for those of us brave enough with just enough crazy sprinkled on top.
While each film has its big stunt, the one they focus on in the trailers this particular outing with IMF features not one major stunt but six insane feats of human courage and quite frankly a healthy amount of madness. (I can’t imagine how much this man’s insurance costs him.) But this is what makes the lasting effect of a long running franchise like this, the conviction to bringing it all to glorious cinematic life. When you watch a scene and wonder how they did it I think this is a big win for them. It means the waving of their magic stick has fooled the best of us even as the average audience member becomes more savvy to the ways of Hollyweird trickery. It seems with Cruise and director McQuarrie the trick is to not deceive but to simply pull off the impossible in camera with Cruise front and center for all of it. From HALO jumps to motorcycle chases against traffic Tom Cruise puts forth his every effort to achieve cinematic gold.
Stunts aside what makes these Mission films work are the characters, even the ones that only make a single film appearance. Every character possesses an interesting motivation to either tag along with Hunt or attempt to stop him by any means necessary. When Brandt’s (Jeremy Renner) reason for helping Hunt in Ghost Protocol is brought into question it’s revealed that Hunt’s and Brandt’s pasts have intersected before and as far as Brandt knew a mistake of his cost the life of someone close to Hunt; he feels responsible to Hunt because he thinks he let him down and wants to make sure it never happens again. Jane’s (Paula Patton) reason for helping Hunt resides in revenge for her partner and lover who died at the hands of an assassin going up against Hunt.
In Fallout, Ilsa (Rebecca Ferguson) returns in hopes to not only find her freedom from MI6 but to prevent Hunt from killing himself in his blind need to defeat the villains of his life. She respects him and likes him in many ways and knows the importance of his continuance. He is the difference between mission accomplished and catastrophe.
This is an action film firing on all cylinders from the cinematography to the stunt coordinators to even the quieter scenes, Fallout is everything I was hoping it would be and so much more. This is one to see on the big screen, IMAX if possible. Tom Cruise once again proves why he is so crucial to modern cinema and why he will probably outlive us all. He’s 56, let that sink in.
Rated PG-13 For: violence and intense sequences of action, and for brief strong language
Runtime: 147 minutes
After Credits Scene: No
Genre: Action, Adventure, Thriller
Starring: Tom Cruise, Rebecca Ferguson, Simon Pegg, Ving Rhames, Henry Cavill
Directed By: Christopher McQuarrie
Out of 5 Nerdskulls
Story: 3.5/ Acting: 4/ Directing: 5/ Visuals: 5
OVERALL: 5 Nerdskulls
Buy to Own: Yes
Check out the trailer below:
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