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MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - FALLOUT

SYNOPSIS:
The best intentions come back to haunt Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) as dangerous plutonium falls into the wrong hands with plans to attack a third of the world's population. Hunt joins up with familiar faces and some new ones in order to right the wrongs previously made.

Review by Louise Keller:
Jam-packed with jaw-dropping stunts and spectacular locations, this sixth in the franchise is a ripper: a welcome package of nonstop thrills, an intelligent story and Tom Cruise at his charismatic best. Beyond the familiar characters, relationships and fabulous theme music, everything about the film feels new. Christopher McQuarrie, who wrote and directed the 2015 installment, Rogue Nation, is back at the helm, delivering an action-rich satisfying thriller with intrigue, nail-biting tension and humour, all of which acts as wrapping paper to the personal stakes at its heart. Success is never a given: we are never sure if or how IMF operative Ethan Hunt will cruise through (pun intended) the high-risk situations in which he finds himself. That overt sense of danger and uncertainty is what drives the film.

The plot involves an arms dealer known as John Lark, a terrorist organisation known as the Apostles and plutonium intended for simultaneous multiple attacks. There are complications of course and Hunt and his team comprising Benji (Simon Pegg) and Luther (Ving Rhames) have to improvise when everything goes wrong. The dynamic between the three is terrific. It has a bit of everything: daring, humour and muscle. Then there are a string of interesting characters: bearded Henry Cavill as a CIA assassin, Angela Bassett as the CIA director, Alex Baldwin as Hunt's boss, Vanessa Kirby as the seductive White Widow, and Sean Harris as the villainous Solomon Lane. The personal elements involve Hunt's wife Julia (Michelle Monaghan) from Instalment III (2006), plus the tantalising push-pull relationship with MI6's Ilsa (Rebecca Ferguson) from Rogue Nation.

Yes, Cruise jumps out of planes, scales cliff edges and partakes in nail-biting chase scenes, but the action sequences feel sparkling fresh and take us to new heights of daring. Highlights include an extraordinary motorbike chase sequence through the streets of Paris and a chilling denouement in a designer white men's room. The parachute landing on the ornate glass dome roof of the Grand Palais is anything but ordinary, but nothing tops the spectacle of the Kashmir sequences amid the snowy peaks. The helicopter chase and its ramifications will have you checking your Fitbit for your pulse rate.

The thing about Ethan Hunt is that we are rooting for him from the outset. We understand his concern - for the world at large and for everyman. He is not the invincible hero who breezes through the challenges. We hurt when he hurts; we worry when he worries; we breathe a sigh of relief when he overcomes his odds. He is human and we connect to his humanity.

All the production values are top notch and that familiar MI theme music elicits goose-bumps whenever it pops up at key moments. It could well be the best of the MI series to date. There is so much happening, it is near impossible to take it all in. I can't wait to see it again!

Review by Andrew L. Urban:
Ending with a trio of climaxes, M:I 6 justifies its lengthy running time by an outstanding marriage of creative writing and bravura execution. This is achieved well within the railings and rules of the high-end action thriller genre, in which an evil actor (Solomon Lane not Sean Harris himself of course) is determined to cause death and destruction on a vast scale with an infernal device. The scale of the destruction and the power of the evil are ratcheted up every time producers of a blockbuster screenplay try to raise the finance. And so it is here, but thanks to inspired creativity in Christopher McQuarrie's heart, the well trodden path - otherwise known as the hero's journey - is embellished with a wonderfully unique love story. I won't spoil that!

The aforementioned Sean Harris does demented evil with terrific understated menace, which is what gives the drama its edge; your baddie has to really bother the audience if you want the friction to start a fire. Tom Cruise doesn't do cruise as Ethan Hunt, a high voltage performance with a soft underbelly when needed. A cool Henry Cavill and understated Ving Rhames provide excellent support as Ethan's pals in action, while Rebecca Ferguson is wonderful as Ilsa Faust, the female agent not to be messed with. The lovely Michelle Monaghan has a small but critical role which will break your heart but for all that, Vanessa Kirby as the mysterious and powerful White Widow delivers the standout, memorable, not to be missed performance. (She played Princess Margaret in The Crown series [2016-17] with equal impact.)

Simon Pegg as Benji Dunn continues to develop his off-beat action characters and Angela Bassett is a nice surprise as Erica Sloan the secret agency boss, while Alec Baldwin is solid as Alan Huntley the agency head kicker.

The stunts are spectacular and the fight choreography jaw dropping. But there is much more meat on the screenplay than blurry action, all of it kept pumping with a creative score by Lorne Balfe and captured in Rob Hardy's excellent camera work. Peter Wenham's production design is so good you won't notice it.

Fallout gives franchise filmmaking a good name.

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 2
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 0

REVIEWS FROM THE MI FRANCHISE:
MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE II (2000)

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE III (2006)

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE: GHOST PROTOCOL (2011)

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE: ROGUE NATION (2015)

MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: FALLOUT (M)
(US, 2018)

CAST: Tom Cruise, Henry Cavill, Ving Rhames, Simon Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson, Sean Harris, Angela Bassett, Vanessa Kirby, Michelle Monaghan, Wes Bentley, Frederick Schmidt, Alec Baldwin, Lian Yang, Wolf Blitzer

PRODUCER: J. J. Abrams, Raphael Benoliel, Per Henry Borch, Tom Cruise, David Ellison, Dana Goldberg, Don Granger, Christopher McQUarrie, Jake Myers

DIRECTOR: Christopher McQuarrie

SCRIPT: Christopher McQuarrie, Bruce Geller

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Rob Hardy

EDITOR: Eddie hamilton

MUSIC: Lorne Balfe

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Peter Wenham

RUNNING TIME: 147 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Paramount

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: August 2, 2018







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