Saturday, March 18, 2023

Tonight's Movie: Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (2011)

It was time to return to the MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE movie series today with my first-ever viewing of MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - GHOST PROTOCOL (2011).

I've been catching up with the series over the last few years and have really enjoyed all of them. GHOST PROTOCOL might have been my favorite; it had a lighter tone and some nice humor along with the expected impressive action set pieces.

This time around Agents Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg) and Jane Carter (Paula Patton) start off the film breaking Ethan Hunt out of a Russian jail. (It's a long story...)

The team's mission is then to stop Hendricks (Michael Nyqvist), who has Russian nuclear launch codes and plans to attack the United States.

The agents' plan to deal with the issue at the Kremlin fails, and they're framed for a devastating explosion, after which the President invokes the "Ghost Protocol": The team is disavowed and will have no help whatsoever.

That said, Ethan's boss, the Secretary (Tom Wilkinson), privately urges Ethan to press forward on the mission. The team also ends up acquiring an additional member in the form of the Secretary's case analyst, Brandt (Jeremy Renner). Brandt is a good man harboring secret guilt related to Ethan and his wife (Michelle Monaghan).

I'll leave off with the plot there. Suffice it to say that the film's 132 minutes are packed with terrific action sequences in varied international locations. Apparently Cruise was actually clinging to a wall 130 stories in the air during the movie's most nerve-wracking section.

The film is also quite stylish at times, not least when Jane dresses in a killer green evening gown as part of the campaign to get the codes back.

I appreciated the film's tight quartet of agents who have excellent chemistry and are a lot of fun to watch. Cruise is always someone I think of as an ultimate movie star; they don't come any better. 

Unfortunately this was Paula Patton's only entry in the series; Jeremy Renner would return in the next film but then was apparently too busy appearing in Marvel films as my favorite Avenger, Hawkeye, to continue as Agent Brandt.

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - GHOST PROTOCOL was directed by Brad Bird and filmed by Robert Elswit. It was written by Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec. The musical score was composed by Michael Giacchino.

Parental Advisory: This film is rated PG-13. The language is not too bad as these films go. Many people die but it's generally non-graphic.

I watched this film on DVD as part of the MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 5-Movie Collection. It's also available in other formats.

I have one additional film to catch up with, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - ROGUE NATION (2015).

The next film in the series, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 7 - DEAD RECKONING - PART 1 (2023) is due to hit theaters this summer.



Blogger Margot Shelby said...

Thanks for the heads up. I'll watch this one. I loved the first Mission Impossible, but didn't like the second one, directed by John Woo. His approach didn't work at all for this kind of picture. Then I stopped watching the franchise.

For me, Tom Cruise - like him or not - is not only the ultimate movie star, he's really the only bona fide movie star left. Emphasis on star. He has proven to have staying power. Other actors and actresses are just that, actors. And celebrities. Which is not the same as being a star.
I also think it's great that he does many of his own dangerous stunts.

12:08 PM  
Blogger Margot Shelby said...

On the topic of action movies - which I love - and because I recently watched Plane, I've been watching some other Gerard Butler movies. (He is a good-looking man!). The Has Fallen Trilogy is good, also Hunter Killer, a good submarine movie (which I also love).

Turn the brain off and have fun with them.

4:42 PM  
Blogger DKoren said...

This is my favorite of the Mission Impossible movies. I can watch this one over and over. It's so much fun and not quite as stressful as some of the others. Jeremy Renner is a delight in it.

I also second Margot's comment about Hunter Killer. That was surprisingly good, rather like a 1st season Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea episode in movie format. A lot of fun. I've been wanting to own that one.

5:45 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Hi, Margot and Deb! Thank you so much for your feedback as well as the Gerard Butler recommendations. I believe PLANE was my introduction to Butler. I love a good submarine movie and see that HUNTER KILLER is available inexpensively so I will pick it up soon. One of my kids has OLYMPUS HAS FALLEN but I've never seen it. I honestly didn't know he was in it until now!

Margot, I certainly agree about Cruise's star qualities. Offscreen Cruise seems like an oddball (i.e., to my knowledge he's not been seen in public with his youngest daughter for many years), but the man knows how to make movies and is a true star.

Deb, the lighthearted tone really appealed to me as well. I wish Renner had been in more of the series than just two films! I really like him (and am so glad he survived his devastating accident several weeks ago).

I'm hoping to see ROGUE NATION in a few weeks so that I'm completely caught up on seeing all the MI films before the new entry in the series is released this summer. (It takes a while only because my daughter and I are watching them together and she lives an hour away!)

Best wishes,

9:27 PM  
Blogger dfordoom said...

I've seen the first three Mission: Impossible movies and the first one is by far the best.

I agree with Margot about Cruise. He has that old-fashioned star quality that no-one else in Hollywood has any more.

9:27 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

DforDoom, I liked the first one a lot.

Cruise is really kind of a throwback in his star appeal, isn't he? There are other actors I like but he truly is a *star*.

Best wishes,

9:32 PM  
Blogger Margot Shelby said...

Laura, Cruise certainly seems like an oddball offscreen, but then, the more I see of all the Hollywood actors and actresses nowadays, the less I want to know about them personally.
Guess the old bromide still holds true: Never meet your heroes.

8:32 AM  
Blogger Laura said...


When I learn that someone whose work I admire is a nice person offscreen (i.e., Tyrone Power, Joel McCrea) it's the cherry on top of the sundae. But if I didn't separate out screen performances from offscreen personas/politics/morality/whatever it would be very limiting!

Best wishes,

9:22 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Newer›  ‹Older