After a brief wait of a few days, I finally got to watch the third Installment of the Mission Impossible series, (Titled, obviously,Mission Impossible III). I'd like to put in a disclaimer here: The review herein may contain references to the story and goings-on in the movie! In other words, It contains spoilers!!! Careful!!! Here is the plot summary from IMDB:
Super-spy Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) has retired from active duty to trains new IMF agents. But he is called back into action to confront the toughest villain he's ever faced – Owen Davian (Philip Seymour Hoffman), an international weapons and information provider with no remorse and no conscience. Hunt assembles his team – his old friend Luther Strickell (Ving Rhames), transportation expert Declan (Jonathan Rhys Meyers), background operative Zhen (Maggie Q), and fresh recruit Lindsey (Keri Russell) – to travel the globe pursuing Davian and rescue Hunt's love, Julia (Michelle Monaghan).
Performance-wise, Tom has delivered a much more elegant and matured performance in this movie,as compared to the earlier two movies.All the three movies had a love-angle to the lead pair but it is much more prominent in this one. And it is a common ploy in Hollywood movies to 'use' the heroine as a scapegoat in order to subjugate the hero! And this is used to telling effect in MI III. Rest of the cast do their job in a matter-of-fact routine with Ving Rhames and Laurence Fishburne getting some meaty dialogues. The ladies in this enterprise get few frames. Maggie Q, as the lady teammate of Tom is strictkly ok whereas Keri Russell as the 'Hostage' in a botched-up rescue mission, gets only a few scenes (and a few more in flashback) but it is Michelle Monahagan who gets a meaty portion and ,since she's a doctor, gets to 'save' Tom in the climax! But the actor who takes the cake in this one is the man who portrays the ruthless arms dealer – Philip Seymour Hoffman. He brings in a chilling cold-steel feel to his character and manages to win instant hatred, both of the hero & the audience.
The MI series has always delivered slick edge-of-the-seat action and this one too doesn't disappoint. The Action scenes are brilliantly thought-out and even better-executed. Though first-time director JJ Abrams is no John Woo, he has done a commendable job in the movie's action shoots. There are two action scenes which stand out in the entire movie.First one is an air assault on the Washington bridge which looks similar to the one in True Lies but is much more explosive. This is evidently the turning-point of the story as Owen Davian escapes after Tom & his team manage an elaborate Vatian City break-in in order to kidnap him. The second one is the highrise-jump scene shot in Shanghai where Tom vaults across two buildings and manages to bail-out with what he wants – something called as the 'Rabbit's Foot' for which Owen holds Michelle a for ransom. There are two copter chases in the movie and the first one, shot amidst towering power-generating-fans is the best one. But there is no single-stunt-scene that manages to remain in the memory long after one's finished with the movie! I still remember the bike-chase in MI II but then thatz John Woo!
All in all, the movie is a good watch and the action buff that I am, it was indeed more xciting for me. One fact that I noticed in all of the MI movies is that there always is a 'mole' on the inside who compromises on the hero's plans and makes life hell for him! While in Part I we had Jon Voight, there was Sean Ambrose (though he was techincally not a mole!) in Part II. And in Part II it is ……I won't tell! And considering that MI III is a 'triquel', where have the past relationships of Tom disappear to? Atleast a passing reference could'ave been included. The movie's emotinal undertones are far greater than in the earlier versions, considering the fact that Tom gets engaged ( and eventually does get married too!), and there was a scene where Hoffman threatens to kill Michelle after counting down to 10, which was a downright tearjerker! I was rather disappointed with the climax because there is no thrilling fight between Tom and Hoffman……just a petty scuffle which ends rather tamely! And IMO, the scene where the 'mole' is revealed was very much anticipated! Hollywood has this knack of leading Viewers up the wrong alley before revealing a totally other facet but this time it falls rather flat in the face!
My rating for Mission Impossible III : 3.5 out of 5