Friday, December 23, 2011

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol in IMAX

Tom Cruise and the IMF team are back for the fourth adventure of the series. As everyone should know it's based on the popular TV show from the 60's. My personal favorites are the first and the third films. The first one was directed by Brian de Palma and was probably one of his best movies to date. The new one follows the formula well it's an pulse-pounding non-stop adventure with twists and turns some gadgets and masks but the thing that makes Mission Impossible an exciting franchise is the death defying stunts, the ones that have you on the edge of your seat even if you feel confident that the guy is going to make it out unscathed. In the first one it was the CIA break-in. The third one it was probably the break-in to the Vatican, the second one was OK with the Pharmaceutical facility but the John Woo helmed flick suffered mightily with a somewhat silly script and those damn birds he has a fetish for. For this fourth one the greatest thrill comes when Hunt is tasked with scaling the tallest building in the world the Burj Khalifa Tower in Dubai. This thing is 160 floors, 828 meters. Yeah, I got a little dizzy watching him wall crawl up that thing, and honestly I think you would too, especially in IMAX.
Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) is back with a new mission. Get back the Nuclear launch codes from a terrorist before he can launch the missiles.  Sounds easy enough but he's got an extra wrinkle. His agency has disavowed him and his team after an explosion at the Kremlin. His team is accused of terrorism and they have to go underground. With him is loyal hacker and friend from the last film Benji (Simon Pegg) who now has field status. He's got two new additions to the team, the vary capable and beautiful Jane (Paula Patton) and the mysterious and troubled analyst Brandt (Jeremy Renner). This one sort of resembles the first film in some respects due to Hunts being disavowed again but that's where the similarities end. This film has some of the best action sequences I've seen this year, perhaps in the last few years. It's true that the characters are lacking in true depth or development but that's pretty much always the case in these films. Director Brad Bird has pumped some new life into this series and given us a film was some pretty entertaining twists and turns and he put together a great group to enjoy this new mission with. I really love the addition of Jeremy Renner here and I think his Brandt character is far more interesting then Ethan Hunt and I wouldn't mind if he did take the reigns of the series going into the future. This was truly a team effort this time, not just a Cruise fest of witty punchlines and daring do. I also kind of liked the fact that their attempts to stop the bad guys was also kind of sloppy. The special gadgets would break at inopportune times, they'd almost always have to rely on plans B or C. You hardly see a flick now a days with spy gadgets that just suddenly don't work. Surely it doesn't happen to James Bond. But I kind of liked the added challenge.
So if you want to get the best viewing experience from this movie then you gotta see it in IMAX it will blow your mind at least a little bit. Especially the tower sequence. Also if you see it in IMAX you'll get a chance to see that pretty awesome 6 minute trailer for the Dark Knight Rises. Nolan doesn't give you too much information but the film looks like it may be the best yet.  I know there are a lot of flicks out there this Holiday season but if you want to stick with the solid then Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol is a good start.
Grade: 4 Buckets

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