Review: Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation

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Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation

At 53-years old, Tom Cruise (as the ever-resourceful and amazingly lucky IMF agent, Ethan Hunt) proves again why he is one of the only living actors able to legitimately claim the status of “movie star.” Scientology, Schmlientology…who cares? This leading man consistently delivers in some of the most entertaining movies ever made – and in this case he’s even doing most of his own dangerous stunts.

The plot In a nutshell (or a compact audio tape, as it were) has the IMF being disbanded by congress, at the suggestion of CIA director, Alan Hunley (Alec Baldwin), just as the Impossible Mission agents are getting ready to go after Solomon Lane (Sean Harris), the head of the evil terrorist organization known as the “Syndicate.”

Who would win in a fight between the Impossible Missions Force’s Ethan Hunt and MI6’s James Bond? It’s hard to say, but in the 2015 espionage movie battle, Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation has set the bar incredibly high, and the upcoming 007 film, Spectre, is going to have a tough time beating all of the edge-of-your-seat excitement packed into the latest M:I effort.

Ethan Hunt (Cruise) and his team, consisting of Benji (Simon Pegg), Brandt (Jeremy Renner) and Luther (Ving Rhames), join forces with a deep cover British agent, Ilsa Faust (Rebecca Ferguson), to go up against Lane and the Syndicate, saving the world, the IMF and their reputations in the process.

The plot is spy-movie plausible enough and does its job by setting up the impossibly crazy action sequences; which writer/director Christopher McQuarrie (who worked with Cruise on Jack Reacher) serves up with wild abandon and fresh, fun energy.

The score by Joe Kraemer has Lalo Schifrin’s original Mission: Impossible theme infused throughout, which makes all of the action additionally thrilling; but that mind-sticking music would make opening a jar of mayonnaise exciting. Here’s betting you’ll be humming it on your drive home.

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation

Watching Rogue Nation is one of the best times I’ve had in the theater so far this year, and with high-octane movies like Kingsman: The Secret Service, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Ant-Man and Mad Max: Fury Road already giving 2015 one of the best action-film resumes in history, that’s saying something.

The Mission: Impossible movie franchise just keeps getting better and better, and I can’t wait to see what they have in store next (supposedly there’s already a sixth one planned.) In the meantime, I’ll be going to see this one a couple more times on the big screen. This is one mission you should definitely choose to accept. Grade: 9/10

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Bob Leeper
Bob Leeper is the co-owner and manager of "Arizona’s Pop Culture and Alternative Art Network," Evermore Nevermore. He is the co-creator of the pop culture events Steampunk Street and ENCREDICON, and is a member of the Phoenix Film Critics Society. He also curates the Facebook fan site The Arizona Cave – AZ Fans of Edgar Rice Burroughs, and is one of the few brave and bold fans of Jar Jar Binks.