The fifth instalment in the Tom Cruise-helmed Mission: Impossible series is an entertaining, action-packed caper with all the necessary trademarks of the genre: complex heists, high speed car chases, fancy gadgetry, a spot of political intrigue, a charming hero, a mysterious beauty, and a dastardly villain. In Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation, IMF agent Ethan Hunt attempts to bring down the criminal organization, creatively named the Syndicate, after the IMF is officially dissolved by the director of the CIA (Alec Bladwin). Along with some help from his techie best friend Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg) and other ex-IMF agents, William Brandt (Jeremy Renner) and Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames), Ethan chases the Syndicate’s leader (Sean Harris) across the globe. Their mission, however, is complicated by double agent Ilsa Faust, played by the beguiling, budding action-star Rebecca Ferguson (who looks like remarkably like Catherine Zeta-Jones crossed with Ingrid Bergman).
Predictable yet still delightfully thrilling, Rogue Nation is the fun version of a James Bond film but without the rampant sexual aggression. Ethan and Ilsa, although mutually attractive, retain a flirty but non-physical relationship during their adventures. In fact, Ethan seems to hold more affection toward his long-time friend Benji whom he is careful to protect throughout the film. Ethan’s hero complex is occasionally irritating, especially when other characters try to convince him to take other courses of action and he refuses to do so point-blank. Also, Sean Harris’s villain, although somewhat unsettling to look at with his blond hair, glasses, and high voice, is not particularly formidable or convincing as a criminal mastermind. However, Pegg, Renner, and Baldwin provide welcome comedic tones and Cruise’s dedication to his performance and to the entertainment of the audience shines through.
Rating: 4 out of 5 flute guns