Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (2011)

I was interested in seeing the latest Mission Impossiable because I had heard that they filmed certain sequences in IMAX, and I wanted to see the results.  I've seen several films in IMAX and have always come away from the experience at just how clear the images are.  The filmmaker Brad Bird makes good use of the process, and the film really looks great.

I've been a big critic with studios making or re-making films in 3D.  It feels very gimmicky, and there still are those stupid glasses.  My little one hates them, and doesn't like watching a 3d film with them.  Avatar was amazing, but in the hands of a filmmaker like Jim Cameron there is no doubt that he uses the technology to his advantage, and to the films advantage.

The IMAX experience is similar but I have always come away from an IMAX experience that seemed breath taking.  The imagery, and the sound is fantastic.  

The story is simple.  This is not just another mission. The IMF is shut down when it's implicated in a global terrorist bombing plot. Ghost Protocol is initiated and Ethan Hunt and his rogue new team must go undercover to clear their organization's name.  The film goes to several countries and it looks almost like a travelogue.  The beautiful scenery will amaze you and transform you into the film.  The most and best use of the IMAX experience is when Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) is hanging from one of the biggest an tallest buildings in the world, and that we see it is him, and not a stuntman.

The photography is breathtaking as you look down at the height of the building.  Then there are the performances of the cast.  The one who shines here is Simon Pegg.  His character provides the laugh track to the film, and it isn't forced.  There were some scenes that looked a bit forced, but I was easily brought back by the action of the film.

I cannot see this film make a good transition when it hits TV/cable, but there is enough action in the film to keep ones attention, but if you must see this film see it in IMAX.  It's pretty awesome, and the film really lends to the format.

Paula Patton is sexy and tough as the agent Carter.  Jeremy Renner is pretty cool as an agent who has some dark deep secrets that become relevant to the film, but it's Simon Pegg's performance that sticks out.  The film wraps up with more Mission Impossible films to come, which seem appropriate.

The one thing though that I felt which was weak in the film was the villain.  Michael Nyqvist
plays the villain and I felt that we didn't get enough of him to be a formative villain for the IMF.  It's a weak argument for the film.  But I felt that the villain needed to stand out more and he didn't.  So hence my mentioning it here.  If you're going to have a villain bent on global annihilation you should have one a bit  more better drawn then he was in the film.  Just look at all the Bond films and there villains.  Those villains are and were memorable.
But if you like action flicks you won't be disappointed, and I have to say I was impressed with Cruise's performance.  Cruise seems to be growing into the part of Ethan Hunt, and he seems to be enjoying it and it looks that way on screen.  If you see the film you won't hate it.  It's a good pop corn movie.

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