January 17, 2012

Unmissable Movies ~ Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol

January 17, 2012  

I am so bad at remembering things, even when they're fresh in my mind. I would make a terrible reviewer, so what I write are not reviews but pleas - actually, think of them as demands - that you go to a movie, watch a TV show, or listen to a band. I strongly recommend not missing Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol. If you have an IMAX near you, don't pass up the chance to see it with the loudest, clearest speakers on the largest, prettiest screen. I went last weekend with four other family members, all of whom didn't have particularly high expectations. We all left as enthusiastic fans with huge smiles on our faces.

I can't get into all the detail I would like since I've seen it only once and my mind is Swiss cheese (speaking of which, G4 has been playing Quantum Leap lately!), but I can certainly say it was incredibly entertaining and highly nerve-wracking. Any fan of thrilling action, awe-inspiring stunts, and terrific fun needs to see this movie. There were so many adrenaline filled scenes. The packed theater jumped in unison at a sudden collision, which was inevitable but perfectly executed at an unexpected point. We groaned at every bone-shattering leap, and Tom Cruise's heart in the throat moments on the side of the Burj Khalifa produced audible gasps.

Ghost Protocol was also a lot funnier than should be expected of a spy thriller, mostly courtesy of the effortlessly hilarious Simon Pegg with help from malfunctioning tech and Jeremy Renner as the new guy with a haunting secret. Tom Cruise doing his own stunts is sheer madness and oh so entertaining. And Paula Patton is a gorgeous ass-kicker. Each of these likeable main characters has chemistry with the others and an important part to play, and no one is indestructible or faultless. One of the best scenes early on involves a holographic screen, a device that projects sound, and a green field agent who almost blows it. This is a tremendously good time with a wonderful sense of humor. I just read a comment from someone who thinks it was unnecessary. I completely disagree. If a movie is too heavy there is nothing really to relate to, no one to identify with. Injecting humor into a serious situation will be more effective in getting me to care about what happens and gives the characters personality.

I always remembered the first Mission Impossible for giving me nightmares after killing Emilio Esteves in the elevator shaft. I saw the second movie maybe a few times, but only because I had nothing better to do. I don't think I ever even watched more than a few bits here and there of the third installment. But Ghost Protocol, with its ability to blend comedy into the action without making the characters ridiculous, I am proud to say I love. Congratulations are in order for Brad Bird (The Incredibles) and all the talent for catapulting MI4 into my favorite movies by the halfway mark. That doesn't often happen. I probably won't get to see it again before it's out of theaters, but I sure as hell want to.

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