It's possible that I've never been this excited for a movie to come out in a very long time. Sure - there was anticipation for Infinity War, Solo and Ocean's 8 but they didn't have me booking a day off from my job in order to see the first showing on opening day at my local cinema.
This did. And it was worth it. Simply put - You should believe all the hype you've heard about the movie. It's the best Mission Impossible movie to date (though Ghost Protocol is pretty close) and possibly the best action movie of 2018 so far.
From a pretty low-key but rather cool opening that harks back to the finale of Rogue Nation to a mind-blowing finale that genuinely has you thinking that our heroes might have actually failed on their mission (whilst also having a fun nod-and-wink to Mission Impossible II), it doesn't really slow down once you hit the Hans Zimmer influenced interpretation of the theme tune by Lorne Balfe (seriously the best version of the theme in the movies).
Much has been made of the return of both Rebecca Ferguson and Michelle Monaghan, and whilst the replay of the is-she-isn't-she an ally dynamic between Ilsa Faust and our heroes could seem a little familiar, it's laced with just enough new material to make it feel fresh and different and, if anything, she doesn't get quite enough to do - whilst Monaghan really isn't in it enough, nor has she been since the third film, to make her appearance tired, but it does serve to close off that section of Ethan Hunts backstory so that he can return to having a fully-fledged love interest again next time, should they choose to.
The stunt work is genuinely thrilling and breath taking with several OMG moments throughout - the HALO jump, the Parisian car-chase, the foot-chase in London and the climactic helicopter sequence are all well shot and easily improve on the previous films already gripping and stunning Moroccan car/bike-chase - with Christopher McQuarrie showing he's levelled up as a Director since Rogue Nation three years ago. I would hope - perhaps even put money on - us seeing a third Mission Impossible film under his stewardship in 2021 unless he gets pulled in for a Bond film in the meantime.
Which brings us to Henry Cavill, who does a solid job as August Walker at providing us with an alternative to Cruise's Hunt. He - solidly built with an impressive punch and a top-notch moustache (I'm a fan of the facial hair - but it was Cavill's here that influenced me to grow my own as an experiment - and keep it) certainly looks different to Cruise's clean-shaven handsome action hero. As is commented in the movie - Walker is a hammer whilst Hunt is a scalpel - and we don't doubt it.
My only complaint about August Walker - and it's an issue with McQuarrie's decision as Director rather than Cavill as an actor - is that the twist is given to the audience relatively early on and, with a little creative camera work, the scene could have been retained without spoiling the twist. Or it could have been reframed as a flashback much later in the movie alongside the eventual reveal.
But that's a small complaint - other than Vanessa Kirby being absolutely wasted in the role of the White Widow (though the link to a previous character suggests she might have known who Hunt was from the outset) so it's good that she's set up for a future return - alongside the villains for the film who are never actually completely defeated and promise a recurring foe for Hunt as Spectre is/was for James Bond.
I cannot recommend the movie enough - and will be heading to see it several times more over the coming weeks whilst I work on improving my own Cavill-esque moustache.
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Image - IMDb