Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

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thirtyframesasecond
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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#101 Post by thirtyframesasecond » Sat Jul 28, 2018 2:37 pm

All the Best People wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 1:26 pm
Thanks. I totally missed that line. There was a lot of chatter in my theater, so maybe that's why.
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She says it in the Paris charity ball scene. I think she named her mother by name as Max, and well, it seemed pretty ominous to have that speech included

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Big Ben
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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#102 Post by Big Ben » Sun Jul 29, 2018 7:15 pm

Fallout is great for what it is. A balls out action movie. It's not going to change the world by any means but it's a lot of fun and a man sitting next to me let out an audible wheeze after a prolonged action sequence. It's a very good way to spend two and half hours.

I do wonder at what point Cruise is going to call it quits though. It's very apparent in some scenes it really is Cruise and the lack of CGI is really astounding. Haven't had this much fun since Fury Road with action sequences!

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thirtyframesasecond
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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#103 Post by thirtyframesasecond » Mon Jul 30, 2018 3:17 am

I'd echo what everyone else is saying. It was an incredible ride and two and a half hours zipped by. The action set pieces were superb and even though it seems like it's "let's have a big one" then dissect Ethan Hunt's relationships a bit, then "let's have a big one", etc. it works so, so well. Cruise busted his leg during filming and I'm sure you can tell exactly when that happens
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maybe the third roof jump in London, he stumbles away in clear agony
. McQuarrie did a good job with the first Reacher film and he and Cruise work so well together. Cruise should only work with him now (The Mummy, man - jeez). Watching the franchise back again (not MI2 - it won't age better) and it really is a fantastic set of action films.

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DarkImbecile
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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#104 Post by DarkImbecile » Mon Jul 30, 2018 5:22 pm

Have to agree with those who thoroughly enjoyed this; if only every major summer franchise was held to the same standard by the filmmakers involved, perhaps this time of year wouldn't inspire as much dread as it does.

Someone on Twitter wrote that every action sequence in Fallout goes on for two minutes longer than it should — but in a good way — and that's probably the best summation of what McQuarrie has brought to this franchise. In both this most recent entry and Rogue Nation, Cruise's favorite collaborator has shown that he's as capable as any action director of not just sustaining but constantly escalating the intensity of the stuntwork and the narrative stakes, which avoids the pummeling repetition and numbing absurdity of a half-hour orgy of meaningless destruction in a Transformers movie*. McQuarrie's sense of rhythm and pacing extends to the script as well, which gets across enough of a wry understanding of the ridiculousness of the franchise's tropes and the absurd intensity of its star to prop up its conceits, but not so much that it undermines the audience's investment in the proceedings à la Moore-era Bond movies. It's also humorous that this was the first entry in the series that had more than just a hint of serialization, and yet it felt no more necessary to the proceedings to have seen the prior films than it ever has.

*According to McQuarrie, the film had about 25 minutes of footage removed from the first cut, including components of at least two major action sequences featured in the trailers (Cruise's rope breaking above the dance hall crowd and the shot of his helicopter flying straight at a semi); while it might have been fun to see those sequences raised to yet another level, I can imagine how another twenty minutes might have pushed especially the climactic third act sequence over the line from exhilarating to exhausting.
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The compounding complications of the finale prompted several bouts of spontaneous laughter from my IMAX audience Thursday night even without a further extension of that scene; I couldn't help thinking of Robin Williams' stand-up bit on golf: "So there's one thermonuclear bomb then?" "Fuck no! There's two, hidden in different places in the Himalayas!" "But they can be disarmed once we find them?" "Fuck no! There's a third component and it's on a helicopter flying away at a hundred miles an hour!..."
Finally: 6>5>1>3>4>2

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thirtyframesasecond
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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#105 Post by thirtyframesasecond » Tue Jul 31, 2018 2:55 pm

Knock the first film to the front and I agree with that order.

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Finch
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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#106 Post by Finch » Tue Jul 31, 2018 3:29 pm

So, Fallout (MI6). The story is almost hysterically convoluted and the whole business with the masks is getting very old. This film and the last have been very progressive with their women characters so it's a bit disappointing they stick to the same old same old in other respects. It's not exactly boring but I'd like them to be thinking outside the box for the story for the inevitable seventh film and take more risks creatively. And the music is horrible, just awful. So these are the two aspects of the film that aren't good. Where it just SINGS is the action and the only studio film that does it better still, is Mad Max Fury Road. The Paris sequence and the helicopter chase in the finale is absolutely riveting stuff. Say what you will about Cruise's antics off-screen but the man knows how to put on a show. He is the closest the Americans have to Jackie Chan. And I'd be very surprised if I hear a funnier line in the movies this year than "Why is he running around in circles?". I literally laughed out loud at that one.

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thirtyframesasecond
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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#107 Post by thirtyframesasecond » Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:13 pm

Finch wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 3:29 pm
So, Fallout (MI6). The story is almost hysterically convoluted and the whole business with the masks is getting very old. This film and the last have been very progressive with their women characters so it's a bit disappointing they stick to the same old same old in other respects. It's not exactly boring but I'd like them to be thinking outside the box for the story for the inevitable seventh film and take more risks creatively. And the music is horrible, just awful. So these are the two aspects of the film that aren't good. Where it just SINGS is the action and the only studio film that does it better still, is Mad Max Fury Road. The Paris sequence and the helicopter chase in the finale is absolutely riveting stuff. Say what you will about Cruise's antics off-screen but the man knows how to put on a show. He is the closest the Americans have to Jackie Chan. And I'd be very surprised if I hear a funnier line in the movies this year than "Why is he running around in circles?". I literally laughed out loud at that one.
My fave line was
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when Cruise offs Cavill and says "prick!"

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Finch
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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#108 Post by Finch » Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:26 pm

I completely missed that one. ^

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#109 Post by McCrutchy » Tue Jul 31, 2018 5:08 pm

I saw this again in IMAX DMR after discovering that my initial Dolby Cinema screening has a constant 2.40:1 aspect ratio. I enjoyed the film again, and it holds up quite well to a second viewing. If only the HALO jump had been in 1.90:1, that would have been disappointing, but the helicopter chase--which is split up by some standard 2.40:1 material--makes the experience much better, and for that sequence alone, I'm glad McQuarrie asked for the shifting aspect ratio on the home video releases.

I will say that I'm not sure that
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Simon Pegg's Benji should have made it in the end. His quasi-final scene where he is almost successfully hanged feels a lot like something that should have killed him, and I wonder if the writers were indecisive. I get that Benji is there for humor, but the character really feels like he's run his course after this movie (the Wolf Blitzer bit really sums up the character, in being both clever and lame at the same time), and having him not survive would have made for a nice emotional moment for both the end of this film, and also a nice callback for the inevitable sequel. Cruise could have kept Pegg on as a producer (or maybe even a writer) in future installments as a show of gratitude, and the movie would have felt a bit more dangerous in the end.
Also, IMDb says that
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Jeremy Renner was supposed to reprise his role as Brandt from the last two films, but ultimately could not because of commitments to the Marvel films. It makes you wonder if, for this film, Cruise/McQuarrie had initially wanted Brandt to be a lot like the Walker character played by Henry Cavill. If Brandt had turned against Hunt and eventually died, that would also have fit nicely into making the film more dangerous and probably would have made keeping Benji alive that much more sensible.
Finch wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 3:29 pm
So, Fallout (MI6). The story is almost hysterically convoluted and the whole business with the masks is getting very old...And the music is horrible, just awful. So these are the two aspects of the film that aren't good.
Convoluted plots and people wearing masks are both key features of this franchise and I certainly hope they aren't going anywhere. They are both completely absurd, but are also just believable enough to be...possible...hence the franchise.

I will admit that the music is kind of disappointing, but that is really Cruise and McQuarrie's fault for hiring Lorne Balfe, who is a protégé of Hans Zimmer and Zimmer's Remote Control Productions. Initially, I was a fan of some or most of Zimmer's recent music, and in some films (particularly Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy), his music just works, but by 2018, this kind of music has become dominant in many big budget action films, and now it's a bit tired and repetitive. There was apparently a lot of trepidation in the film score community when Balfe was officially announced to replace Joe Kraemer, who provided the excellent score for Cruise/McQuarrie's Jack Reacher and also did Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (a score I don't recall, but was apparently very highly regarded as well), and the reaction seems to be mixed. However, I will say that on repeat viewing, the score became fatiguing outside of the memorable use of bongos, and there are a lot of Zimmer-style moments, especially in the action sequences.

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tenia
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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#110 Post by tenia » Wed Aug 01, 2018 5:23 am

I see a lot of love here for Rogue Nation over Ghost Protocol. However, I'd tend to favour Ghost over Rogue specifically for one reason : I found the team chemistry much more effective on Ghost than on Rogue, where it almost felt at times like Pegg had hijecked the movie. It disrupted the balance I found overall on Ghost for something which seemed to me more problematic and less productive. It's not that I disliked Pegg and his character, but he felt like having too big of a role within a team than then felt disbalanced for the worst.

Thus the question for those having seen these 2 and Fallout : how Fallout fares regarding this element ?

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#111 Post by Lost Highway » Wed Aug 01, 2018 7:12 am

I'd say it was Rebecca Ferguson who stole Rogue Nation. She instantly established Ilsa Faust as the most interesting character in the series and is the reason why Rogue Nation has a slight edge over Ghost Protocol for me.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#112 Post by tenia » Wed Aug 01, 2018 7:47 am

Fair point. She didn't particularly struck me, which probably explains why I'd factor other things first in the overall balance of the movie. But if I had to choose, I suppose I'd prefer what Renner did with his character in Ghost rather than what Ferguson did with hers in Rogue, but thanks anyway for the reminder.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#113 Post by jbeall » Wed Aug 01, 2018 1:31 pm

I can only echo the praise for the action sequences, and the Paris sequence was exceptionally well shot with some "magic hour" lighting. This was the best pure action movie I've seen since Mad Max: Fury Road, and it hardly matters that the plot is utterly preposterous.

Also, after seeing Henry Cavill reload his biceps so hard that he literally grows a beard, I realize I'm not spending nearly enough time at the gym.
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Out of curiosity, is this the first movie in which a character (Solomon Lane) is the Macguffin? Also, I missed Hunt saying "prick" at the moment he killed Walker, but he does say that when he pulls up alongside him in the chopper, at which point Walker just shrugs and reaches behind his seat for a rifle. I'm also wondering if it's a running gag in this film that Ilsa Faust is a lousy shot. She was aiming for "John Lark's" chest, but shoots him in the face, and then, from a stationary position atop a bridge, can't assassinate Lane with a sniper's rifle. It's kind of amazing she hasn't killed Hunt yet, but then again, it would make sense if that's what she's trying to do.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#114 Post by connor » Wed Aug 01, 2018 2:33 pm

Surprised to see such little love for M:I III. I didn't see it until recently and thought, in some ways, it was more engaging than 4 and 5.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#115 Post by tenia » Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:27 pm

I always had positive memories about it and I often don't really see what there is about it that makes so many people ranking it so low.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#116 Post by DarkImbecile » Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:37 pm

It's not that it's not good — Hoffman is far and away the best villain in the series — just that it's a very good blockbuster franchise with only one mediocre entry. When all the other entries are lumped together, minor differences in taste are responsible for the ranking order more than a major drop off in quality.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#117 Post by Werewolf by Night » Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:39 pm

I like it, it's very well made, but it's a very nasty movie in a way that's not particularly welcoming to repeated viewing. IV's breezy, non-stop action was a relief, and I'm glad the series has continued more in that direction (though I do appreciate McQuarrie's attempts to maintain a cohesive narrative to Hunt's life and career).

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Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#118 Post by hanshotfirst1138 » Wed Aug 01, 2018 8:21 pm

connor wrote:Surprised to see such little love for M:I III. I didn't see it until recently and thought, in some ways, it was more engaging than 4 and 5.
I didn’t really go for III. The plot was solid and PSH is a great villain, but Abrams’ rapid fire cutting and action sequences just make it feel like a glorified TV pilot to me. That said, he does give it an attempt at a central emotional weight with the relationship between Hunt and his wife, and there’s no denying it’s where the franchise started to steer towards a more cohesive direction. I love the heck out Ghost Protocol; Brad Bird’s almost musical sense of editing and traces of screwball give it such a beautiful sense of rhythm. I’d really like to say something poaitive about II, as I love John Woo, but like most of his American films, it’s sadly just not very good. McQuarrie has done a very solid job so far, no doubt, but given that this franchise always thrived on little flourishes brought by auteurs, it might be nice to have some new blood. Either way, 6, like 5, was consistently thrilling and entertaining throughout.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#119 Post by jbeall » Wed Aug 01, 2018 11:21 pm

The only one I definitely don't like is MI:II. The latex masks were pushed way beyond the point of absurdity (and with none of the vaguely ironic overtones of, say, Fallout). I saw it in theaters and recall the entire audience bursting into laughter the moment the pigeons appeared outside the bunker door. III is overall a mediocre installment, but it's fine. Hoffman's good in the role, but he doesn't have enough to do. I would probably rank them 1, 4, 6, 5 (all very good), 3 (mediocre), 2 (laughably bad).

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#120 Post by connor » Thu Aug 02, 2018 11:59 am

Saw Fallout last night and yes the hype is justified. Though it feels like McQuarrie went in thinking "I'm going to make a Chris Nolan/Sam Mendes film." Or maybe I'm just being distracted by the faux Hans Zimmer score.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#121 Post by whaleallright » Sun Aug 05, 2018 5:32 pm

n/a
Last edited by whaleallright on Wed Aug 08, 2018 2:15 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#122 Post by Brian C » Tue Aug 07, 2018 12:56 am

I'm not as big of a fan of this series as you guys - they've all been almost instantly forgettable to me, and I had to rewatch Rogue Nation again the other night just to remember literally any of it. But I did notice an uptick in quality with Fallout, which actually felt like someone directed it. There's some real imagination in the staging of the action sequences, and I was really pleasantly surprised at how little of it looked like obvious CGI.

Still ... there's really nothing here that we haven't seen a million times before, either in terms of story or in terms of action setups. It's well put-together, but it was too long, and I felt my attention starting to wane about the time they got to Kashmir. The helicopter sequence is impressive, but it's also interminably long, and frankly by the end I was just glad the movie was over.

There's also a real problem with the whole franchise, which is that Cruise is not and has never been a particularly interesting actor to me. And his performances in these movies have been ludicrously one note - he is INTENSE. It's literally the only thing he brings to Ethan Hunt. Ghost Protocol had some fun with this aspect of his persona, but the last two have played it straight, to their detriment. And none of the other characters are given much either - Pegg is the one-note wiseacre, Ferguson stares at people with those wistful sad eyes, Baldwin does the ball-busting superior bit, Harris reprises his role for no reason and has nothing to do, and Rhames ... I dunno, says some lines. Cavill continues to be annoying in everything he does. The reason Kirby stands out in this film (and I agree she's great) is that she actually brings some personality to her role and it's like meeting the one person at a work party who wants to talk about something other than work.

So, long story short, the best I can manage for this is half-hearted admiration for the technical aspects.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#123 Post by Persona » Tue Aug 07, 2018 6:06 pm

Hmm...

Fallout was pretty good? I guess?

I am really trying to figure out where the extra levels of hype are coming from. I guess after the past couple everyone was just primed and ready for this one? To me it was pretty much on par with the rest of the series (well, excluding 2 and somewhat 3, which are below par). Lots and lots of plot, exposition, plot, exposition, action, plot, exposition, plot, action, action, action, plot, drama, action, action, action, Action, ACTION, CARTOON LEVELS OF ACTION.

It definitely seems to hit a bit of a stride somewhere around the bathroom scene. Starts to gain momentum, has that lovely collateral damage vision for Hunt, really good setpiece AND THEN... gets bogged down in its own plot machinations again, starts to feel unwieldy, then delivers the expected third act pyrotechnics which basically amount to Tom Cruise flying a helicopter very unsafely.

Yeah, the Fury Road comparisons did this movie absolutely no favors in my opinion.

The action is good but it's not that sort of distinctive, relentlessly building and story communicative, artful kind of experience that the action was in Fury Road. Here it's very much Mission Impossible/Hollywood setpieces, well-crafted but nothing that will really stick in my brain other than maybe the bathroom scene. And some of the shots from the street chase.

Henry Cavill is once again more of a physical presence than anything. I was pretty non-plussed by him and thought he was actually kind of bad in parts. People love him because of the mustache and arms loaded meme. I think Cruise and Ferguson were the only consistent performers in this one, really, though Ving does get a really nice moment with Ilsa late in the film (even if the whole set-up of that scene is awkward af). Some of the shaky acting/line-readings/performance beats really didn't help all the plot/back-story dumps go down any smoother.

The twist in the film is SOOOO predictable I was thinking there had to be another twist on top of it, but no. And then because you know what the twist is going to be, you can see how it will get outed from a mile away. So that whole part of the film, I mean, there was no dramatic relevance to it because of how the characters were set up in relation to it, so it was just a big fat nothing and an eye-roll for me. The way they use it to add to the personal stakes for Ethan, though, is so ridiculous and contrived... I mean, I don't know what to say. Turn my brain off, I guess?

McQuarrie seems to have established himself as a very solid director of action. Funny because you think his strength would be in the characters and the writing, but other than a somewhat superficial sheen of intelligence, I found most of this story to be about as dumb as your average Hollywood action flick, and also just about as thematically relevant. When a grand statement is made at the end of the film that the world "NEEDS the IMF" it felt like it was supposed to carry some weight with me and my life and in my world, and I'm still trying to figure out what that is. Like, uh, intelligence agencies and counter-terrorism units are good, is that it? But as compromised as those entities are for most of this film, I don't think you can even take that away from it.

But I guess it's good that the world has heroes and that those heroes have a good support network? Yeah, we will go with that. It just doesn't quite resonate because Hunt's heroic acts towards the end of this one feel so unreal you'd think you were watching a Fast & Furious flick.

Anyways, I can't say I hated my time in the theater, it was surely entertaining enough... even if this is yet another Hollywood flick that I thought was unnecessarily long and unfocused and blustery. Like, I am straight up yearning for the days when home video discs actually needed a section for deleted scenes. That said, I do want my shot from the trailer of Hunt almost flying his helicopter into a truck. Seems like a whole (and perhaps more interesting) section of that final setpiece was left out of the film.

Sidenote: this is shot by Rob Hardy, same guy who shot Alex Garland's films, and boy is it a weird experience watching a Mission Impossible movie and constantly thinking, "Uh, yeah, these compositions and the lighting really remind me of Annihilation." I don't know if the gauzy, pastel, soft-lighting and flaring look works great for this type of movie... but it does still kind of work, somehow. And the look of the film aptly hardened up a bit for the final act.

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#124 Post by tenia » Sun Aug 12, 2018 5:58 am

Saw this yesterday, and that was very good though very predictable (and indeed often quite dumb in places). I guess it has to do with how you buy into these ridiculously long action scenes and chases without getting too bored. This one hooked me, probably because they're shot and edited well enough so that I didn't end up finding myself trying to decipher where the hell everybody is and where they're going and what's going on on screen.
I found it also interesting to have nods (more or less direct) to pretty much every previous entry in a way that felt well integrated (though I guess the 1st movie is the more shoehorned one). This somehow also seemed to create a better balance between the different team members and characters as a whole.
I also liked that the small brushes of humor are light enough (and short enough).

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Re: Mission: Impossible Franchise (1996-?)

#125 Post by dda1996a » Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:29 am

This is in no way like Fury Road and I don't know who and why that comparison was made. But...
This is a great action film. I think it's a combination of not having any good action movies come out (when Avengers Infinite Shit is considered the blockbuster of our era you know things are bad) and this being well made, enjoyable and just fun. I don't think any of the M:I films are perfect but with the exception of 2 all of them are pure fun while also being for the most part well shot, edited and directed.
I didn't dizzy out the theater but I was glad to see this on the big screen and will gladly support any solid, fun film like this which doesn't rely on CGI and carnage (plus this was shot on 35mm which is just great).

Also having mentioned that awful Avengers movie, I liked how this film also posits our hero to choose between allies/friends and world destruction, but does so in a not stupid way that actually makes sense and doesn't make me groan. It feels ingrained to Hunt and his crew to try and manage both and I was rather happy with the way they avoided falling into the obviousness of the black/white dichotomy of that aforementioned film.

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