When a mission failure results in three plutonium cores ending up in the wrong hands, the IMF is put under CIA overwatch. Things get even more complicated when it's discovered that that the group looking to acquire the plutonium - known as the Apostles - are the last remaining members of Solomon Lane's (Sean Harris) Syndicate. Their goal, cause a global catastrophe that will bring about a new world order. And the only link to the Apostles and the plutonium that Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and his team have to work with is a mysterious arms dealer known as the White Widow (Vanessa Kirby).
In the 22 years it has been around, the Mission: Impossible franchise has gone through many guises. Each movie is as different from the last as the men who direct them. Fallout may have the same director as Rogue Nation - a first for the franchise - but Christopher McQuarrie still manages to make this a very different movie. This one's a lot darker than previous instalments, the mission is more personal for Ethan who is questioning some of his life choices. But the personal side of the story definitely puts an interesting spin on things. We learn more about who Ethan is, beyond the dedicated spy who will go to insane lengths to save the world.
In order to create this very different Mission: Impossible movie, McQuarrie has put together an incredible cast. There's a lot of returning characters - all of whom slip perfectly back into their roles - including an intriguing reappearance by Ethan's wife Julia (Michelle Monaghan). It was good to see Alec Baldwin get a little more involved in the action this time around, he plays a major part in one of the movie's most thrilling scenes. There's also a few new faces, although Angela Bassett is criminally under utilised, Vanessa Kirby and Henry Cavill both bring something very interesting to proceedings.
Now I know Mission: Impossible is known more than anything for it's extreme action set pieces, shot in some of the most spectacular parts of the world. I am happy to say that Fallout does not disappoint. With a High Altitude Low Opening (HALO) jump at 25,000 feet, a vomit inducing helicopter chase and Tom Cruise right in the middle, this is more than just fun, it's pure adrenaline fuelled excitement. Not to mention the fact that despite a sometimes more gritty appearance (than normal anyway), everything about this movie looks stunning.
Cruise spent a year training to do the HALO jump - something that had a very tight 3 minute window at dusk, in which it had to be shot. Somewhere in there Cruise managed to learn to fly a helicopter as well! Lets face it, the man is batshit insane. But there is something (possibly a morbid fascination) about seeing Cruise perform these stunts himself, it adds an authenticity to the movie. It's certainly a credit to him that he can act out a scene whilst piloting a helicopter through some hair-raising manoeuvres. And he certainly paid the price for his dedication this time, breaking his ankle during a jump between buildings in London - the shot of which actually makes it into the movie. Pegg's character Benji looks at Ethan sometimes in much the same way I imagine Pegg must do at Cruise, when he's performing these insane stunts. The question is; where do they go from here? I certainly don't envy the people who have to figure that out!
But the question on everyone's mind, and by everyone I of course mean me...was Fallout worth the scandal that was Moustache-Gate? Well I would have to say yes, it was worth it. Justice League - as much as I do like it (sorry) - was never going to be a great movie, Fallout on the other hand, had that potential. Ever since the first images of Henry Cavill's August Walker dropped, the character has been surrounded by intrigue. Something that Cavill delivers on (in spades). It was good to see him play someone very different - especially to Superman. He brought a raw and brutal intensity to the mysterious Walker. And if that means a couple of shots of the Man of Steel with a funny looking mouth...so be it.
In a year that has seen some pretty incredible action movies, Christopher McQuarrie has given us something entirely different. With it's intense action set pieces and compelling story, Mission: Impossible - Fallout is nothing short of spectacular. Now I can't say if he has knocked my personal favourite (Ghost Protocol) off the top spot, but McQuarrie has definitely surpassed his first instalment in the franchise. But as I said before, the real question is; where do they go from here?
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