Light the Fuse for Adventure with Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation

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Mission Impossible Rogue Nation Tom Cruise Critical Blast

The hunt is on for Ethan Hunt in the latest installment of the MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE franchise. With recent events in the IMF history, the CIA, headed up by Director Alan Hunley (Alec Baldwin), is keen to have the force defunded and folded into CIA operations. But Hunt (Tom Cruise) is now personally involved in unmasking the existence of an anti-IMF team calling itself The Syndicate. No one believes that this Syndicate exists, and when Hunt is callled in, he goes to ground, becoming the CIA's most wanted.

When Hunt is finally ready to make a move against the Syndicate leader (Sean Harris), he needs to call in favors from his friends, Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg), Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames) and William Brandt (Jeremy Renner) -- all of whom live under constant and intense scrutiny by the CIA for any chance that they might betray Hunt's location.

Hunt also finds a seeming ally in the person of Ilsa Faust (Rebecca Ferguson), a former MI-5 operative who is now either in deep cover with the Syndicate, or a loyal Syndicate member. Her motives are always kept shrouded, and you can never tell if she's helping Hunt take down the Syndicate or setting him up for something bigger that the Syndicate wants.

The big action scene is one I'm still not sure I buy, involving an underwater chamber used for cooling a giant computer. It's certainly over the top, and I get that the writers have to come up with...well, impossible missions to keep the action going. But I'm thinking there were other options available for tackling this scene the way they did.

I'm still nursing a bit of a grudge against the M:I franchise for what they did to Peter Graves' character in the first film of the series, but I'm learning to accept it and move on. And maybe it's carryover from the AVENGERS films, but I really enjoyed Jeremy Renner's performance in this film. In fact, I really got into everyone's performance, even Baldwin's, who isn't someone who usually tops my lists.

This Blu-ray/DVD/Digital release includes a commentary track with Director Christopher McQuarrie and Tom Cruise, as well as several featurettes that take the viewers behind the scenes and into the mindset of the actors. Much of them are focused on Tom Cruise, of course, but then he is the marquee listed star, so why not?

Adrenalin-charged chase scenes, highly-choreographed fights, and political intrigue all work together to make MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - ROGUE NATION a fun popcorn action flick.

4.0 / 5.0