Mission: Impossible - Fallout

Mission: Impossible – Fallout Review: Go Ahead and Accept

Mission: Impossible - Fallout

Movie Rating:


Like The NeverEnding Story before it, Mission: Impossible continues to dominate the field of inaccurately named movies. Unlike The NeverEnding Story, Mission: Impossible keeps its high quality consistent into the sixth entry of this summer staple.

This year’s contribution is Mission: Impossible – Fallout. I am incredibly tempted to make a pun about all of the various vehicles that Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) falls out of, but that would be basic of me. The truth is that gravity is nearly a character itself in this fast-paced action flick that succeeds in keeping the audience on its toes.

Picking up just where Rogue Nation left off, Hunt is instantly given his next mission, should he choose to accept it. Categorical bad guy Solomon Lane (Sean Harris) is finally behind bars, and a new branch of criminal underbelly has emerged in this vacuum. This syndicate, known as The Apostles, have the opportunity to get their mitts on three units of plutonium, and Hunt is just the guy to stop them.

Very quickly, however, something goes wrong. During the nuclear handoff, Hunt is given a single instant to choose between his team and the mission. Being the swell guy that he is, he chooses his team, and the plutonium falls into the wrong hands.

This turns out to be the recurring theme of Fallout. What happens when you need to choose between your team and your mission? The new director of IMF (Alec Baldwin) admires Hunt for his loyalty to the team and ability to adapt a plan while completing the mission. His emotions are a strength. But to the CIA (represented by Angela Bassett), his refusal to follow orders at all cost is a liability, and she nominates a babysitter (Henry Cavill) to keep an eye on Hunt. A little internal tension never hurts in an action film, so with this new team assembled they all head to Paris to get that plutonium back.

Hitting its stride early, Mission: Impossible – Fallout then settles into its rhythm of gliding from one action set-piece to the next. Hunt runs and jumps across rooftops. He gets into shootouts and yells a lot. Name nearly any vehicle, and it’s very likely that he has a chase in it, and crashes it. There is nothing that man cannot do.

Beyond the physical demands of the film, Fallout has Hunt as the grand wizard behind the entire world of the film. He’s always two steps ahead of the bad guys and his own bosses. Watching the movie, and having a sense of ease with this maestro in charge, is a way to add some sense of relaxation between all of the incredible car chases and tense standoffs.

You likely already know how the plot will end, but that’s not the point of Mission: Impossible – Fallout. You watch it for the action and for Tom Cruise, and the movie delivers on both fronts.

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  1. I absolutely love this franchise and went into ‘Fallout’ with ‘Dark Knight’-like through-the-roof expectations. Just like ‘The Dark Knight,’ it exceeded them.

    I caught an IMAX showing last night (full-size screen, but with digital projectors). If IMAX is an option, settle for nothing less. The sound mix is astounding and the “full screen” aspect of the various IMAX scenes (shot on digital IMAX cameras) will blow your mind. The clarity and grandeur makes the sequences – especially the chopper chase – truly breathtaking. Instead of juttering back and forth between “full screen” and “wide screen” aspect ratios, it mostly does the slow transition so it doesn’t catch your eyes. (I only saw it because I was looking for it. My daughter didn’t notice.)

    I can’t praise ‘Fallout’ enough. It has everything – a twisty and complex plot, top-notch action, humor, a killer villain, thick tension and unpredictability.

    This is the ‘Mission: Impossible’ movie that the franchise has been building towards all along.

  2. Al

    My only problem with it is that the majority of it looked like warmed over petrified dog shit. And yes, I saw it in IMAX — full size. In fact, I even saw it a second time in a different IMAX — digital — just to see if there was something wrong with the first presentation. With the exception of the helicopter chase, the movie looks terrible. Drab, muted colors, tons of noise, moments of fuzziness, moments that are really soft-looking, etc. It’s a shame. This film definitely won’t make for a good 4K UHD experience. I think McQuarrie prefers this look. I recently watched all 5 M: Is in 4K, and while it’s certainly the best film in the series, Rogue Nation looked the worst out of all of them. The 4K UHD barely looked any better than the standard blu-ray.

    • McQuarrie insists shooting on film – some of us like that “look.” 🙂

      That said, maybe it was just IMAX itself. I saw it digitally presented on a non-IMAX screen and it looked great to me.

      • Al

        It has nothing to do with being shot on film. It’s a stylistic choice that doesn’t necessarily suit the franchise. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but many films that were shot on film have bold, gorgeous, beautiful colors! They are razor sharp! They have zero moments of blurriness/fuzziness. They don’t contain any noise (make no mistake about it, what you see in M: I – Fallout is digital noise, from the DI; it’s NOT film grain). I’m a huge advocate of shooting on film. I’ve driven hundreds of miles, in the past few years to see Nolan and Tarantino films in film projection. McQuarrie apparently doesn’t understand how to use shooting on film to his advantage. It’s interesting that the only segment of M: I 6 that looks great, is the one that he shot digitally (the helicopter chase was shot with IMAX digital cameras).

        • McQuarrie has a slightly gritty style, but I didn’t notice any noise during Fallout. I plan on taking Mrs. Hickman to see it on IMAX some time soon, so I’ll keep my eyes peeled for it.

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