Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Mission Impossible: Fallout

The latest episode in the Mission: Impossible franchise, Fallout, came out this weekend to good reviews and a $61 Million box office.  Mrs. Graybeard, who likes an adventure/action movie as much as anyone, and I went to catch it yesterday at the morning show. Retiree's privilege is that if we rearrange our sleeping in and playing with tools a little, they let us into the theater for $4 each.

As virtually all of these movies have been, it's a nonstop series of sit-on-the-edge-of-your-seat action sequences with a few moments here and there to catch your breath.  The plot is intricate: the MI team has to find black market plutonium, held by an organization that has not a single known face or name, to keep them from making plutonium bombs based on the work of a nuclear scientist who wants to wash the world in chaos.  Or something like that.  Thankfully, they didn't let the plot get in the way of the story; there are enough story twists and little surprises to keep me (at least) entertained and guessing.

Last week at some point, I saw a graphic on Pinterest (The World's Single Largest Waste of Time) like this one:

Beside the good natured ribbing over being a 56 year old stud muffin in amazing shape, Cruise has gotten a lot of positive press for doing his own stunts, and there are a lot of impressive stunts in the film.  It's hard to pick the most impressive but the technically most difficult stunt was doing a HALO (High Altitude Low Open) skydive out of a C-17 into Paris.  In the story line, they jump from about 30,000 feet and open their chutes at 2000 (going from memory).  This video (H/T John in Philly) goes into details of the amount of time it took to get this done safely in a movie.  They say that Tom Cruise is the first actor to do one of these jumps. 

As my wife commented, Tom is a big dollar property and you've got to know there's probably concern about losing the Franchise if something should happen to him.  Key Person insurance policies are nothing new in the rest of industry; you can bet there's a big policy (or two or more) on Cruise. 

The principle cast is the same as the last movie; besides Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt, Simon Pegg and Ving Rhames resume their roles as Benji and Luther (respectively).  In many ways the movie follows as a sequel to 2015's Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation.  A bad guy captured in Rogue Nation figures prominently in this one as a prisoner being exchanged, bartered over and kidnapped over and over.  Sean Harris as Solomon Lane spends much of the movie in a straitjacket, shackles, chains and more.  Henry Cavill, who plays Superman in the current DC comics universe guests - in a very convoluted role.  I think he's in there so Tom Cruise can beat up Superman. 

A lot of fun.  As I said about Ant Man a few weeks ago, be prepared to leave a few laws of physics behind and don't overthink it.  "Voluntary suspension of disbelief" and all.  When they talk about microwave transmitters that are small enough to inject into someones neck, that are powerful enough to be heard from anywhere, or heard from a satellite, don't go saying "but microwaves don't work that way".  It'll just spoil the fun.  Five stars.


  1. I was debating whether or not to go and see the film. With 5 stars from SiGraybeard, I think I'll part with some cash and do it. Thank you.

    1. Hope you find it to be as much fun as we did.

  2. "As I said about Ant Man a few weeks ago, be prepared to leave a few laws of physics behind and don't overthink it."

    If you're worried much by the laws of physics (or rationality) you shouldn't be watching a super-hero movie.

    That said, I didn't like the first Ant-man movie, so I will be seeing the sequel on Blu-ray.

  3. Not big on the MI franchise, much more a Jack Reacher man. Having said that I never was much impressed with Tom Cruise as an actor, Top Gun was detestable for me, but think he really became an Actor with Valkyrie.
    I was in Naval Aviation when Top Gun was made and knew several of the enlisted people he interacted with aboard ship while filming, all agreed he was a snobbish ass. That's ok but you better bring in a stellar performance as justification, which he did not. He seemed to believe that being a total ass-hat was what being a Fighter Pilot was all about; so whatever the general public thought of it he had a Delta Sierra to get past with me. Too much CGI in MI for that to happen.

    1. My wife's and my summary of Top Gun was to watch it on mute, so you didn't hear the dopey dialog. If possible, just fast forward through and watch the flying scenes.

      Is Tom Cruise a great actor? Not even close. But some of the movies are fun, and the MI series has been lately.