With the IMF disbanded, and Ethan (Tom Cruise) out in the cold, the team now faces off against a network of highly skilled special agents, the Syndicate. These highly trained operatives are hellbent on creating a new world order through an escalating series of terrorist attacks. Ethan gathers his team and joins forces with disavowed British agent Ilsa Faust (Rebecca Ferguson), who may or may not be a member of this rogue nation, as the group faces their most impossible mission yet.
Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation which is the fifth entry in the Mission Impossible franchise proves that yes, a franchise can get better as it progresses if it’s in the hands of a capable filmmaker and has Tom Cruise as its lead star. I was quite impressed with the very slick Ghost Protocol but Rogue Nation manages to not only trump the previous one but is perhaps also the best Mission Impossible yet.
Tom Cruise has developed a bit of a habit of doing death-defying stunts with the utmost ease and well, he’s at it again, hanging from a plane in the very first scene of the movie and this heart-pounding scene very much sets the tone for everything that follows. Tom Cruise is at his best yet again as Ethan Hunt. Despite playing the same character for the fifth time Cruise still manages to bring both depth and charisma to this performance and the physicality that Cruise brings to this role deserves special praise in itself. Christopher McQuarrie who’s responsible for writing the Academy Award winning script for The Usual Suspects as well as directing Cruise in Jack Reacher does a fantastic job of taking the helm. Not only does he present a smart and well-balanced script but also manages to direct some of the most thrilling and jaw-dropping set-pieces of the entire series, and that’s saying something. The action always had me at the edge of my seat, a feat only Mad Max: Fury Road was able to accomplish this year.
However, I think it would be wrong if only McQuarrie and Cruise were to thank for the success of this movie because the entire cast does a marvelous job of complementing Cruise as well making their own presence felt. The biggest surprise is undoubtedly Swedish actress Rebecca Ferguson who carries half the movie and nearly steals the entire thing from Cruise as friendly foe to Ethan Hunt, Ilsa Faust. Ferguson’s character is as much of a badass as she is sexy and needless to say she puts forth an excellent performance. And unlike most Tom Cruise movies this film isn’t all about Tom Cruise and this time around Cruise is happy to sit back and let the other actors shine as well and the film’s stellar supporting cast that features: Simon Pegg (Bengi), Jeremy Renner (William Brandt), Ving Rhames (Luther Stickell) and Alec Baldwin (Alan Hunley) all have their moments.
Another thing that puts Rogue Nation above its predecessor, Ghost Protocol is the fact that the film gives us a very compelling villain in Sean Harris’s Solomon Lane who is huge step-up from Michael Nyqvist’s Hendricks from the previous film. Lane brings a heavy dose of conflict to the story and there were moments in the film that made me genuinely hate this guy.
All in all, Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation isn’t just one of the best movies of the summer but is also the best one of the Mission Impossible franchise which seems to be getting better and better as it ages. Rogue Nation greatly benefits from writer/ director Christopher McQuarrie’s deft direction who is able to bring a uniquely earthy feel to all the film’s gut-wrenching set-pieces as well as a great script, while Tom Cruise, Rebecca Ferguson and the rest of the talented cast are all at the top of their game. Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation is a movie you shouldn’t miss