Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol

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mission impossible ghost

Tom Cruise, as usual, did most of his own stunts — including this building climb.

It’s strange that director Brad Bird won Oscars for animated films The Incredibles and Ratatouille, (and was involved with Iron Giant as well as some animated TV shows), and he directed this action picture. It’s the fourth in the franchise, and it sometimes feels like a cartoon.

Don’t get me wrong, the stunts are sometimes amazing. The 20 minute scene we get early on in Dubai is breathtaking (It helps if you have a fear of heights like I do).

And for a film done in Imax, it certainly utilizes that nicely.

But in a weekend where we get the spy movie Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy – which puts us to sleep, this spy thriller is on the other end of the spectrum. It felt like they were trying to do a James Bond movie (while Daniel Craig spends this weekend in the best movie of the year).

The first Mission Impossible was good, but I didn’t care for the next two. This one has some impressive stunts, and certainly a great cast. I fell in love with Paula Patton as a caring teacher in Precious. I became a fan of Jeremy Renner with The Hurt Locker. And Simon Pegg cracked me up in Paul, the alien comedy. It’s just weird that he wasn’t all that funny in this. He was there to be the comic relief as a sidekick to Cruise, but just having him babble doesn’t make it funny.

The premise is one that’s as old as the hills (or Tom Cruise, who at 50 really shouldn’t be scaling buildings anymore).

The IMF is shut down and implicated in a terrorist bombing. Cruise and his rogue team try to clear their name. Now, I have no clue how without any help they can buy all the fancy devices they use for these missions, but really…this is a film where you are required to suspend your disbelief.

And like a James Bond movie, with a gorgeous woman as diamond loving arms dealers, exotic locales, and of course nuclear strikes (one bomb hits a skyscrapper in San Francisco – with apparently nobody in the U.S. ready to retaliate…oops, that suspension of disbelief I forgot about).

The script needed some work, but if you just want to enjoy a popcorn flick this holiday season, go see it in Imax (it’s a few dollars more, but filmed in Imax).

I enjoyed the Dean Martin song when it was used in Swingers so much more, but there were enough interesting scenes that I was never bored (loved one in which the Russian subtitles switch to English, as a knocked out Cruise is regaining consciousness).

I was bummed that I didn’t see a single ghost. Boooo!

This gets 2 ½ out of 5 stars.

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