1. What’s it about?
The movie opens to secret agent Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) in a Russian prison, having taken the fall for the unsanctioned killing of some Serbian soldiers (after which the U.S. government disavowed the existence of his mission). Hunt is broken out by Benji of his old team (Simon Pegg) and Jane, a new team member (Paula Patton). He is given a secret mission by the Secretary of Defense: to stop the transfer of nuclear launch codes to a madman who would happily reduce the earth to nuclear dust. Hunt teams up with Jane, Benji and later, Brandt (Jeremy Renner) on this impossibly difficult endeavor.
2. Will I like it?
This is a spy action thriller that is true to the spirit of the Mission Impossible series. It has non-stop, frenzied action that plainly serves to move the storyline along. Tom Cruise has grown organically into the role of Ethan Hunt, much like Matt Damon has with the Bourne series. Fans of the series will like the film’s stylish sophistication and trademark scenes of globe-hopping and blood-pumping action. However, I found the plot of the film somewhat hackneyed and used up. Despite the tired storyline, the actors give solid performances in the film, and you find yourself being slowly and compellingly being pulled in to the story line.
3. Will my kids like it?
The action in this film rolls from the streets of Moscow to the desert and Burj Khalifa of Dubai to the streets of the wealthy part of Mumbai. There are several daring car chases, street fights, and an amazing scene at the Burj Khalifa that will keep them goggle-eyed with amazement.
4. Why is it rated PG-13?
The film is rated PG-13 for “sequences of intense action and violence.” The fight scenes are spy vs. spy fights like in the James Bond films and are not terribly graphic.
5. Are there inappropriate parts that are cause for concern?
As in any intense spy action thriller, the fighting is pretty intense at times, but there is no overt show of blood. There is one scene where Brandt comes clean about an issue about his past, and gulps down a couple of shots of whiskey.
6. When’s the best time for a bathroom break?
The action in this movie is unrelenting. The only down scene in the film is where the team is debriefing (more like yelling at each other) and arguing about how the mission went. That’s probably your best bet.
7.Is it better in the Imax version?
Yes. The strongest action sequences were filmed with 65 mm Imax cameras. There are only 27 minutes of Imax footage — 27 minutes of sublime and inspired camera angling that made me break into a sweat (and the inside of the theater was cold). The action bits in the Imax version are so compelling that Paramount is releasing the Imax version first on December 16th, and the widescreen version on December 21st.
8. Will I want to see it again?
You will want to see it again. Cruise has filled this role heart and soul, and fits the character of Ethan Hunt like a tailored Italian suit. I thought that Cruise brought maturity to Hunt’s character this time around, and also a hint of gravitas in some of the more emotional scenes of the film.
9. How good is the supporting cast?
The supporting cast were excellent. Simon Pegg is amusing but not hilarious as the techie support guy (who also wields a mean handgun when it’s called for), and Jeremy Renner contributes a thrilling performance during the action sequences in the film as the mission backup. Paula Patton is kick-ass in her role as Hunt’s mission partner and, by the way, looks stunningly gorgeous in an evening gown.
10.How was Brad Bird’s directing in this film?
Bird is making his live-action debut with Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol. His other work is in animated films, including Ratatouille, The Incredibles and Iron Giant. As I mentioned earlier, his IMAX sequences are wonders of crescendo action. But even with the used-up storyline, Bird manages to keep on yanking our attention on a visceral level, and in the end keeps us tensely engaged in the action and with the characters themselves.