All original written content is (c) 2015 Mike Pascale. Visual content is (c) its respective owners. Bru-Hed is a trademark of All Ages Media and Mike Pascale.
NEWBIES: If this is your first trip here (welcome!), here’s the QT on what these reviews are.
THIS WEEK: The fifth installment of Tom Cruise’s TV-based franchise goes fast and furious! He and his Impossible Mission Force-mates Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg and Ving Rhames have to team up with deadly hottie Rebecca Ferguson to expose the “rogue-nation” super-secret Syndicate and its leader after CIA boss Alec Baldwin has the IMF officially disbanded and hunts down Cruise’s Ethan Hunt. Let the chase(s) begin! Written and directed by Christopher McQuarrie with story by McQuarrie and Drew Pearce.
- If you’ve seen the trailer with Tom hanging off the airplane as it takes off, you know what you’re in for as that’s the opening scene! (That’s not CG, by the way. Cruise was strapped to that plane as it took off and did the take six times. The dude may be wacky, but he’s wacky tough, too.)
- More wild and/or complex fight scenes, chases, gun fights, tech, infiltrations and getaways than ever. It’s getting tough to top each installment, but they try their best and the audience benefits.
- The spectacular sets and exotic locations equal the stunts. If you’ve ever seen the movie Casablanca, you’ve never seen the city like this before! Bogie and Bergman would’ve had simultaneous heart attacks if they were with this cast.
- Speaking of the cast, they’re all dead-on choices. Everyone does a great job, and the interplay between the characters (especially Pegg and Cruise, they and Ferguson, Baldwin and Renner, Renner and Rhames) is excellent.
- Ferguson is smokin’ hot, and we get treated to a wet swimsuit (sadly, the pool butt shot in the trailer is not in the actual film for some dumb reason), skin-tight leather pants, and, best of all, a quick-but-glorious nekkid side-boob shot that yours truly will be putting on a loop.
- The usual nod to the TV show’s “this message will self-destruct in five seconds,” but with a surprising deadly twist.
- Though the main baddie is a total dick (as he should be), you get a great closure not usually seen in these types of films (and even I noticed the parallel with the hero’s shot from earlier. I like that stuff.)
- The British version of the CIA is called MI-5. Get it? And we get to see the Prime Minister loopy.
- Nice comedic moments with Pegg (of course) both alone and with others.
- If the motorcycle chase here isn’t the best ever filmed, it’s at least in the top three. Holy monkey crap!
- Ladies, Tom is shirtless and tied up. Need I say more?
- Great fight choreography, and this time it seems the lady gets the best scenes.
- Although Cruise’s character does the stereotypical superhuman stunts and survives the impossible, at least he doesn’t immediately do the Taylor Swift and “shake it off” instantly. After the underwater scene especially, he’s visibly affected and takes time to get back to 100 percent.
- Lots of the usual double/triple twists, questionable alliances and who’s-not-who you’ve come to expect from the franchise.
- It’s said that this type of movie is only as good as its villain. Thankfully that doesn’t apply here, as the villain isn’t seen much (most of the film is Ethan looking for him); and when he does show up, he talks a bit like a bad Peter Lorre impersonator, except harder to understand. I think even Pegg’s Benji could take him in a fist fight.
- With some of the fights and chases, there’s a ton going on and it’s not always clear what and who are where or what they’re doing. Same for the plot; hard for my average brain to keep track of who was double-crossing who and how/why.
- In the water scenario, they say they can’t use oxygen tanks because of a metal sensor. With all the gadgetry available, how do they not have mini-air tanks made out of plastic or carbon fiber? If they can make race cars and aircraft engine parts out that stuff, they can make an air tank.
- A few suspension-of-disbelief moments that stretch the viewer’s brain cells. (Pretty much all the bad guys are lousy shots, and a BMW has the greatest end-over-end-over-end-over-end crash test results in history.)
- This one’s on me and fans of Arby’s Roast Beef: I kept waiting to hear Ving Rhames (voice of their commercials) say, “We’ve got the MEAT!” I hope it’s on the blooper reel.
- No button during or after the credits! I know it ain’t a Marvel movie, but I was hopin’ for at least somethin’.
I didn’t pay extra fer 3D so I can’t comment on it, although the chases and fight scenes are probably more impressive with it; but to me it didn’t make this any less a blast. And this is a blast. Fooze and crew do it again! You’ll want to see it on the big screen to be a part of the action, and then watch it a couple more times on video to slo-mo and freeze frame all the fights, chases, stunts, close calls and Ferguson’s T&A; plus check out all the setups, outtakes, how-tos and making-ofs.
P.S.: Pascale can draw action, fight scenes and T&A to decorate your wall. Get some art and get a 20 percent discount if you mention this review. Just ask Craig here!
DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed herein are not necessarily those of Wednesday’s Heroes, Mike Pascale, Tom Fooze, Scientology, the CIA, British secret service or Jim Phelps. If anyone catches you reading this, the secretary will disavow any knowledge of your existence. This review will self destruct in ten years, or until Bru gets a paying gig, whichever comes first.