All I really was expecting, upon entering the theater to view Mission Impossible 4: Ghost Protocol was for the movie to be entertaining and better than Part 2 (and hopefully Part 3). I believe we can all agree that John Woo’s Mission Impossible 2 fell quite short in delivering the awesome factor of the first film in the series. I kind of hold it on par with Die Hard 2, but Part 3 was marginally better. I’m sure the combination of JJ Abrams at the helm and the addition of Philip Seymour Hoffman as the “Big Bad” helped.
Much like the previous installments, a new director stepped up to the plate for Ghost Protocol. Brad Bird, whose previous film work was the amazing Ratatouille, The Incredibles and Iron Giant, made the decision to drop cartoons for Tom Cruise and Company.
Well I have to say, Brad Bird delivered an amazing piece of work with Mission Impossible 4: Ghost Protocol (can I please just say MI4 from here on out? Kthnx!) I had my reservations that an animated movie director could deliver the goods but holy fuck, within the first fifteen minutes of the film, those reservations were dropped out the window of a very tall building only to be blown away in a surprise sand storm.
The difference from the previous entries don’t stop with Bird taking the director’s seat. The story here is pretty linear. The film opens to find Ethan Hunt (Cruise) incarcerated in a Russian prison. Soon aided in an escape from said jail, it seems he’s drawn right back into another one of those pesky conspiracies which comes with this IMF job. However, this one seems to level the Kremlin as well as destroy the IMF altogether. This is where the “Ghost Protocol” comes into play as we find the only agents left from the Impossible Missions Force is a new (can I say rag-tag?) gang which includes Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg), Jane Carter (Paula Patton) and William Brandt (Jeremy Renner). With little time, a lack of resources, and the imminent threat of nuclear war, the team sets off under the proverbial radar to stop “Cobalt” (Michael Nyqvist) from bringing the world to an end in his insane mission to bring on world peace.
The one thing I’ve grown to expect with every Mission Impossible film is to see some pretty great action sequences. And yes, they are in each installment. Once again, in MI4, Tom Cruise does some pretty batshit crazy stunts and the result makes the action even more (edge of your seat, crap your pants, and blame the smell on that annoying kid behind you) exciting!
Bird makes it a point with his directing skills to keep the film moving. The pace, the action, the sprinkling here and there of comedy, the cameo of Lost favorite Josh Holloway, that really hot chick fight that happens between Jane Carter (right) and that hot assassin chick Sabine Moreau played by Lea Seydoux (left)…well… I mean shit, I don’t have much bad to say about this movie. Really.
Well, okay, one gripe I did have with the film was the interactions between the characters. It wasn’t a big gripe, but I really felt that Jeremy Renner’s character was a bit out of place at times. Some of his more serious dialog came off laughable to me. Simon Pegg’s addition to the cast was necessary to offset the action and suspense with some comedy, plus he’s just really good. But, being that this is a Bad Robot production and we already got a little taste of Sawyer early on, I couldn’t help but keep thinking that Scotty from JJ Abram’s Star Trek somehow beamed his way into this movie.
Still, those are small gripes. Ultimately, MI4 delivers on all fronts. Rolling full steam out of the wheel house that houses James Bond, Jason Bourne and the Call Of Duty video games, Mission Impossible 4: Ghost Protocol is well worth the time.