Director: Christopher McQuarrie
Stars: Tom Cruise, Simon Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson, Ving Rhames, Henry Cavill, Michelle Monaghan, Sean Harris and Vanessa Kirby.
Review by Damocles
No … bloody … way!
Mission Impossible Fallout is a classic of the action genre. Quite possibly one of the master-classes of action cinema.
No shaky camera. No ridiculous cutting away from the lead actor. A minimal use of CGI. Action sequences that serve the story and inform the audience about the character’s motivation.
Not since Mad Max Fury Road, has there been a film quite as good, and Mission Impossible Fallout, almost tops it.
Every single action sequence and stunt was an incredible adrenaline rush. There is so much to enjoy and marvel at, that its almost impossible not to relive the sequences in your mind and find adrenaline coursing through your veins.
However, in the hands of a lesser director, Tom Cruise’s stunt-work would have been massacred on screen, but McQuarrie utilises the camera skilfully and beautifully, with deft cinematography that perfectly serves the action sequences and a creative freedom that can only come from having a star doing incredibly insane stunt-work.
At 56 years old, Tom Cruise is almost relentless in his ability to amaze and thrill the audience. Whether it’s performing a live and proper HALO (High Altitude Low Opening) jump that only Special Forces unit in the military would perform, or just that glorious montage of him running across the rooftops of London, few can say that his commitment to stunt-work and sheer energy isn’t impressive.
The supporting cast, all do an excellent job of making the world a believable and fun escape. Rebecca Ferguson reprises her role from Rogue Nation as Ilsa Faust, and is as dependable as ever, the female counterpart of Ethan Hunt. Ving Rhames and Simon Pegg have their moment to shine, with Rhames being used more and better in this film, than he has been previously.
However, the standout character was Henry Cavill’s Walker. The now famous “bicep reload” is in off itself an important element to the character and perfectly establishes what he is capable of.
The plot continues the story of Rogue Nation, with Ethan Hunt and his team tasked with finding the remnants of the Syndicate, who have relabelled themselves as the Apostles, under the leadership of John Lark, and prevent a nuclear holocaust.
Pacing is almost airtight. It uses situational humour to deliver a breather between the action, and unlike many films, the third act is just as solid as the previous two. This, in of itself is noteworthy due to how often action films have a very flagging last act.
The cinematography perfectly showcases Europe. In vein of the old Bond moves, where locations served to up the ante of the stakes, amidst the glamour of the Continent, Fallout visits Paris, London, and for an incredible finale, Kashmir.
Each location is almost upended in the chaos that Ethan Hunt leaves behind, in particular Paris being an incredible standout of action cinema, with multiple chase sequences in a myriad of vehicles that leave you gasping at the screen.
Simply because Tom Cruise is that close to death in every single one of them, and you simply must admire the work of a man who is so committed to entertainment, that he is willing to die for it.
To aid with these sequences, Lorne Balfe created a pulsing score that echoes the work of Junkie XL in Mad Max Fury Road. Fast paced beats, roaring overtures that creates a cacophony of noise that behoves you to both realise the stakes and the speed of which everything has escalated.
Mission Impossible Fallout is film-making at the very peak what Hollywood action cinema can deliver. It takes all the lessons learned from master-classes of Mad Max Fury Road and John Wick and delivers insanity on screen.
Let’s hope that the lessons learned from the success of this film, mean an even greater standard be reached for future blockbusters and adventure films.
A scene to recall: The helicopter stunt when he falls … that literally had me gasping and goosebumps erupted like a rash across my body. Also that magnificent transition from film to IMAX lens was amazing.
Image courtesy of The Atlantic.