Hollywood is woefully indifferent to the scripts it puts together for its action flicks (those scoundrels!), and so the one created for Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (2011) doesn’t exactly tell a high-quality story. But it’s such a wonderfully rich B-feature I was delighted to have laid eyes on it.
Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and his International Monetary Fund team–scratch that! that’s not what IMF stands for here–go after a mad scientist with a remake-the-world scheme. There are plenty of tight, technically savvy action scenes (Ethan’s vertical car ride to the bottom of a confined area, his effort to climb a stunning skyscraper, Jane Carter’s heated battle with a female assassin). Also, the film sort of channels pictures of the past: 2001: A Space Odyssey gadgets and “zero gravity” floating emerge.* And in Mumbai, where the story finally ends up, Tom Cruise becomes an everyman James Bond and Paula Patton, who plays Agent Jane Carter, becomes an exemplary Bond movie beauty-cum-heroine.
Directed by Brad Bird.
*It’s not really zero gravity, which I why I used the term in quotation marks.