Monday, August 13, 2018

Mission: Impossible - Fallout

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion (or other commenters), that's fine. To each their own. These reviews are not meant to be statements of facts or endorsements, I am just sharing my opinions and my perspective when watching the film and is not meant to reflect how these films should be viewed. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 0-5. 0, of course, being unwatchable. 1, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being great and 5, being epic! And if you enjoy these reviews feel free to share them and follow the blog or follow me on Twitter (@RevRonster) for links to my reviews and the occasional live-Tweet session of the movie I'm watching!  When it comes to Mission:  Impossible movies, I always choose to accept...and, yes, I know that was stupid and cheesy but I just love these movies!

Mission:  Impossible – Fallout – 5 out of 5

I love the Mission: Impossible franchise.  Pretty much every single movie (but the second one) is top notch action and exciting fun.  So, totes obvs, I was excited as hell when I saw that first trailer for the new one; Mission:  Impossible – Fallout.  What kind of insane stunt was Tom Cruise going to pull off this time?  What type of crazy nutso action was going to be presented?  Like the previous ones (except the 2nd one), it delivered the goods and it was awesome!

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Behold, the mustache that will live in infamy in Justice League.

A terrorist group calling themselves The Apostles recently was able to get their hands on three plutonium cores during a botched IMF mission; they plan on using them to creature nuclear weapons and bring chaos to the world.  IMF agent; Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise), is charged with retrieving the cores.  The problem is that he must extract the former leader of the defunct criminal organization called the Syndicate; Solomon Lane (Sean Harris), in order to do so.  With his team at his side; Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames) and Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg), Hunt sets out to complete the mission but finds himself saddled with a dangerous CIA operative named August Walker (Henry Cavill) and is being shadowed by a former ally; Ilsa Faust (Rebecca Ferguson) who both have their own interests in Lane.

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I love that action movies can make business casual an awesome uniform
for a fight scene but when I have to dress like this for work I feel
like I'm being tortured.

Director Christopher McQuarrie becomes the first director to return for a second movie in this franchise and that is a great thing.  As writer and director, McQuarrie crafted a captivating thriller that is incredibly exciting and a whole lot of fun.  Overall, the story is very solid and does a great job of building off of the previous film Rogue Nation and I like the development we see; whether it is from the antagonist Solomon Lane, the heroes like Hunt and Faust or even Hunt’s ex-wife Julia, who makes a return.  Fallout is the first film to really feel like a continuation and McQuarrie makes this feature feel a tad bit like universe building rather than just another mission that the chose to accept.  However, that doesn’t take away from the new developments this film delivers.  For example, the character of August Walker was a nice addition to the series and his role was exceptionally memorable from both an action standpoint and a story one.

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Benji and Luther are back...already that means this movie is awesome.

One element that really struck me was the use of sound in the film.  From a sound editing perspective, the audio track is tight as hell.  It does a tremendous job of amplifying the action and making everything feel like it has more weight.  Whether this comes in the form of items whizzing by as Hunt flies past cars while on a high speed chase or the simple sound of elbows and fists being thrown in a fist fight, the use of sound really aided in creating very vivid moments of action.  Sometimes, action scenes are accompanied only by natural sound and it helps make these already memorable sequences even more stark and attention-grabbing.  Playing in concert with the sound is the score, which is varied but never random feeling.  While the use of music may not be the first thing a viewer would notice in a film like this, Fallout still did a tremendous job of having the perfect musical accompaniment for what you were seeing on screen.

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The Foley work on that mustache was next level.
Okay, that's the last mustache joke.

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Ilsa is back and still bad as hell.
Performance-wise, Fallout is great.  Cruise is keeping the formula true for the character he’s played now for 22 years and he’s backed up by franchise regulars excellently with Rhames providing the hip and tender factor and Pegg hitting all the right comedic notes.  While Cruise may also provide a nice badass factor, he’s definitely out-badassed by Rebecca Ferguson as Faust and Henry Cavill as Walker.  Both of them are tough-as-nails characters and they make it damn believable.  Finally, Sean Harris is extra unsettling as the antagonist Solomon Lane and his performance is really a thrill to take in.  He is able to be this looming threat despite the fact he spends most of the story in custody.  

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I have an intense fear of drowning.  This scene is my effing nightmare.

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While it is definitely an insurance headache, seeing
Cruise's face while these stunts happen really
helps emerge one into the action.
Of course, the biggest and most anticipated portion of these films is the action and stunts.  Somehow, the Mission:  Impossible films are able to out-do themselves with each passing entry.  Hell, watch the first one nowadays and it just looks so mild by what they’ve churned out since the third film.  This one really made a name for itself by having Tom Cruise make history by being the first actor to perform a HALO (high altitude, low opening) jump.  He trained for a year for this and it was worth it because the final sequence is epic.  It looks incredible and it is very exciting.  And that is just one moment in the film!  Fallout delivers memorable moment after memorable moment and makes the film a non-stop thrill ride that basically never lets up on the action.  The movie provides an incredible array of stunt-based action scenes that run the spectrum of a simple foot chase to a helicopter showdown to an incredibly thrilling car and motorcycle chase through some very busy streets.  To put it bluntly:  The action is very satisfying.

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I say this all the time but despite how I hate his religious beliefs, I respect the
hell out of Cruise for having the courage to do these stunts.

Mission:  Impossible – Fallout keeps the traditions and tropes this action franchise has established and juiced them up so it never feels repetitive or stale.  Even when the story slows down for exposition and development purposes McQuarrie is able to make it feel like the foot is never let up from the gas pedal and the story moves along at an amazing pace.  The movie is exciting, badass and fun.  It has all the right ingredients at all the right measurements and it makes it one of the best in the series so far.

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