Christopher McQuarrie’s Mission: Impossible – Fallout makes each setting or jaw-dropping sequence an integral part of the film’s high octane, adrenaline pumping narrative resulting in a final product which is both thrilling and stunning to witness.
There are action movies that other actors either attempt to emulate or page homage (ex. The Rock in Skyscraper). Some action movies are so poorly put together that people cringe when anyone mentions their name. Then films like Mission: Impossible – Fallout are made with the intent of pushing the boundaries of a typical action film ultimately blowing expectations out of the water. McQuarrie’s second stint in the director’s chair will widely be considered his best work to date. Mission: Impossible – Fallout belongs in the same discussion as Terminator 2: Judgement Day and Die Hard which are both widely considered two of the greatest action movies ever made.
Mission: Impossible – Fallout’s narrative centers around the morality of IMF agent Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise). Over the duration of his career, he’s had a real issue with just merely killing these dangerous men and women in the interest of justice being served in a court of law. What happens when your morality leads to theft of three plutonium cores and enables one of the worst men ever to enact a plot of revenge against Mr. Hunt? Could his past actions ultimately bring down IMF’s greatest agent?
The success of the latest installment of Mission: Impossible is a direct result of McQuarrie’s direction. He has a deep understanding of what the audiences are craving in this new film. It is no longer acceptable to shoot in the more generic locations around the globe. Mission: Impossible – Fallout needed to be a large-scale upstaging of the previous missions to date. Paris, Rome, and London are just some of the stops on this intense journey. Rob Hardy’s cinematography captures the beauty of these locales while still chronicling the most intense action sequences of the year. Hardy used creativity and ingenuity to pull this off. During the HALO jump, he mounted a camera on one of the jumpers masks to capture the film’s seminal moment. During the chase scene in Paris, Hardy shot the truck getting stuck between two buildings from in the front of the vehicle at a higher angle. Doing this allowed the audience to see the jarring motion of the truck getting stuck and the police who were in high pursuit.
Lorne Balfe’s musical prowess is on full display as his melodies are woven deftly through each pivotal moment heightening the audience’s sense of impending danger. Mission: Impossible – Fallout‘s pacing is off the charts which matches the imaginative action sequences. The most memorable scene without question had to be the HALO jump. The level difficulty required for an extensively trained Marine to pull that off is high, having Tom Cruise do it is unreal. The helicopter chase sequence is incredible and makes me wonder if this is the type of action we will see in Top Gun 2: Maverick. It’s worth watching this featurette on the stunt to have an idea of the action in this release.
Overall, Mission: Impossible – Fallout is an assault on your nerves causing you to grow tenser as the unceasing number of action sequences unfold defying all logic and reason. Audiences might be exhausted by the end of the film but they sure as hell will be entertained too. There’s nothing wrong with that at all.