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MOVIE REVIEW

Mission: Impossible - Fallout also known as “Mission: Impossible VI,” “M:I 6 - Mission Impossible,” “M:I VI - Mission Impossible,” “Misión: Imposible - Fallout,” “Misión: Imposible - Repercusión,” “Mission: Impossible - Utóhatás,” “Mission: Impossible - Yansimalar,” “Missão: Impossível - Efeito Fallout,” “Missão: Impossível - Fallout,” “Neimanoma misija: atpildo diena,” “Nemoguca misija: Raspad sistema,” “Nhiem Vu Bat Kha Thi: Sup Do,” “Επικίνδυνη αποστολή: Η πτώση,” «Мiсiя неможлива: Фолаут», «Мисията невъзможна: Разпад», «Миссия невыполнима: Последствия»

MPAA Rating: PG-13-Rating (MPAA) for violence and intense sequences of action, and for brief strong language.

Reviewed by: Keith Rowe
CONTRIBUTOR

Offensive
Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
• Adults • Young Adults
Genre:
Spy Action Adventure Thriller Sequel RealD 3D IMAX
Length:
2 hr. 27 min.
Year of Release:
2018
USA Release:
July 27, 2018 (wide—4,000+ theaters)
DVD: December 4, 2018
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Relevant Issues
Copyright, Paramount Pictures

spies in the Bible

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FILM VIOLENCE—How does viewing violence in movies affect families? Answer

Copyright, Paramount Pictures Copyright, Paramount Pictures Copyright, Paramount Pictures Copyright, Paramount Pictures Copyright, Paramount Pictures
Featuring: Tom CruiseEthan Hunt
Rebecca Ferguson … Ilsa Faust
Henry CavillAugust Walker—a CIA assassin
Vanessa Kirby … White Widow—a black market arms dealer, and the daughter of Max
Michelle MonaghanJulia Meade-Hunt—Ethan’s wife
Wes Bentley … Patrick
Simon PeggBenjamin “Benji” Dunn
Angela BassettErica Sloan—new Director of the Central Intelligence Agency
Alec BaldwinAlan Hunley—a former CIA Director who became the new IMF Secretary
Sean Harris … Solomon Lane—an anarchist mastermind
Ving RhamesLuther Stickell
See all »
Director: Christopher McQuarrie—“Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation” (2015), “Jack Reacher” (2012)
Producer: Bad Robot
Paramount Pictures
See all »
Distributor: Distributor: Paramount Pictures Corporation. Trademark logo.
Paramount Pictures

“Some missions are not a choice”

“Mission: Impossible” Trivia

Q: When Martin Landau left the “Mission: Impossible” TV show in 1969, which notable actor stepped in to fill the vacated position in the cast? (Answer below…)

Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) has accepted another mission, but the operation doesn’t go as planned and three grapefruit-sized plutonium cores end up in the hands of the bad guys—self-named Apostles, whose misguided manifesto is “the greater the suffering, the greater the peace.”

To make up for the earlier mishap, where Hunt chose his team over the lives of thousands of innocent people, the IMF (specifically Alec Baldwin’s Alan Hunley) commissions Hunt and his team, Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames) and Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg), to retrieve the pilfered plutonium “by any means necessary,” four words that significantly complicate matters.

The broker who can secure the plutonium for Hunt, the superhero sounding White Widow (Vanessa Kirby), asks for something audacious in return… the release of Solomon Lane (Sean Harris), the villain from the previous film. To ensure that Hunt doesn’t go rogue, Erica Sloan (Angela Bassett) sends CIA agent August Walker (Henry Cavill) along as a watchdog. Of course, Hunt must go rogue in order to save the world, as he always does… just in the nick of time.

Even though this is the sixth movie in the series, “Mission: Impossible—Fallout” has many firsts. This is the first “M:I” movie to be released in 3-D (RealD 3D). Christopher McQuarrie has become the first “M:I” director to call the shots on more than one film in the franchise. And while on the subject of firsts, Rebecca Ferguson, who plays MI6 agent Ilsa Faust, is the first female to appear twice in a leading role in a “M:I” film (also noteworthy is that she was pregnant while filming her scenes).

At age 56, Cruise is in amazing physical shape and still looks credible as an action star (unlike Roger Moore in his later James Bond movies). Cruise’s devotion to his craft is remarkable and his stamina is undeniable, especially since he continues to do most of his own stunts.

Cruise trained for a year in order to pull off the HALO (High Altitude, Low Opening) parachute jump in the movie. Since the scene takes place near sunset, Cruise and crew could only attempt one jump per day. With the assistance of a C-17 military aircraft and a ground crew to create a vertical wind tunnel, Cruise made over one hundred jumps at 25,000 feet just to deliver three shots for McQuarrie to use in the film. Now that’s dedication!

Not all of Cruise’s stunts were successful, though. In a scene, where he jumps from one building to another, Cruise fractured his ankle. The take was used as a key bit of action in the trailer.

Weighing in at 2 hours and 27 minutes, “Mission: Impossible—Fallout” has a longer running time than any previous film in the series. Turns out, it’s about 27 minutes too long.

That comment is no disparagement of the movie’s action sequences, which are innovative, wildly entertaining and, along with Cruise and Cavill, the main draw of the film. If “Mission: Impossible—Fallout” were to be judged solely on its high-octane action scenes, it would be a 4 star film. Unfortunately, in a summer blockbuster jam-packed with mind-blowing stunts, it’s easy to mistake spectacle for quality.

Despite having some of the finest pulse-pounding stunts in the entire series, this is a lesser “M:I” film, thanks to McQuarrie’s flaccid screenplay. The passé premise (the 80s spy movies called and want their plutonium back), trite dialog (“Family… what can you do?”) and languid storytelling (especially in the early stages of the film) are all narrative ailments the film can’t quite overcome.

That’s not to say that the film doesn’t have a plot… it does—a very straightforward, predictable and contrived one. People from Hunt’s past pop up at regular intervals with little explanation or preamble. Sloan’s backhanded comment about IMF agents treating every day like Halloween is amusing and incisive. Unfortunately, the movie fails to take its own hint since the mask gag is overused here. The down-to-the-last-second bomb disarming is a hackneyed story element that, thankfully, is delivered with a little self-reflexive humor here. McQuarrie trots out the tired “mole inside the operation” plot device in an effort to muddle the motivations of Hunt and Walker, but the shocking reveal is obvious from the start.

And why did Hunt and Walker have to parachute from a high altitude (a similar sequence appears in 2009s “Star Trek”)_through a lightning storm no less—just to land on the roof of a Parisian building they could’ve gained access to with a proper disguise? Maybe it’s because we get a show-stopping stunt sequence out of the deal or because the rapid plummet ties in with the movie’s title—the theme of personal and physical descent permeates the story.

So let’s take a closer look at the movie’s objectionable content. As an action movie, it goes without saying that there’s a great deal of violence here. The film covers the gamut of violent action sequences: fistfights, gun battles, knife stabbings, rooftop/car/motorcycle chases, helicopter dogfights, etc.

The well-choreographed slugfest in the bathroom is one of the most violent exchanges in the movie. Besides punching and kicking in coordinated combinations, the combatants use sink pipes or other debris as weapons. The melee is extremely brutal, and the advanced hand-to-hand combat eventually escalates to characters throwing each other through walls, stalls and sinks. To defy our expectations, the bout isn’t decided by a fist or sharp object, but rather by a bullet (which is anticlimactic). The fight concludes with the dead man being dragged across a white tiled bathroom floor, which creates a graphic streak of blood and gore.

During shootouts, we see blood spatter from people who are riddled by a hail of bullets. Several policemen are shot in one pursuit scene. A policewoman is shot in the leg by four thugs, and Hunt retaliates by gunning the four men down in a blaze of bullets. At least Hunt apologizes to the woman before his team flees the scene.

Men aren’t the only ones guilty of committing acts of violence in the film. One woman brutally stabs an assailant with a knife. Another woman repeatedly punches the villain in the face, stabs him in the leg with a broken bottle and then chokes him with a rope.

The various car/motorcycle chases result in vehicle crashes, bodies flying through the air and a great deal of property damage, which are all staples of this type of scene.

Many sequences don’t contain violence, per se, but have heightened moments of peril, like the parachute jump, the leap across buildings, a fall from a helicopter, etc. The helicopter chase is brimming with aggression as the two pilots shoot bullets at each other and try to force the other into crashing. And there is a winner-takes-all bare-handed brawl.

News footage of bombs going off in prominent places of worship around the world, rumors of the Apostles’ plan to unleash a nuclear attack (the result of which is also a tie-in with the title) worse than what occurred in WWII and a diabolical plan to contaminate the water supply to one third of the world’s population are all examples of indirect or off-screen violence. The characters also speak of an outbreak of the smallpox virus in a small village.

The movie’s profanity is moderately heavy, overall, but is extreme during the helicopter scene. That one sequence contains half of the expletives in the film. The movie has one f-word and a several s-words. Also, peppered in the dialog are a few instances each of “d**n,” “h**l,” “a**” and “b**ch.” God and Jesus’ names are taken in vain a few times in the film.

Even though the film contains no nudity, a deeply disturbing scene takes place inside a French bathroom. While Hunt and Walker are attempting to digitally scan an unconscious man’s face, a group of men walk into the bathroom and notice multiple sets of feet inside the stall. The interlopers, who assume a homosexual act is being committed, make catcalls and crude comments about joining the action. Even though what’s going on inside the stall is completely innocent, the perception of impropriety taints a scene that could’ve accomplished what it needed to without the salacious sidebar.

The action inside a French nightclub reveals partygoers in mostly proper garb (a few dresses are low-cut in the back), but otherwise the clothing is appropriate throughout the film. A few people are seen sipping on mixed drinks during the scene, which is the only instance of alcohol/drugs in the movie.

All things considered, “Mission: Impossible—Fallout” is a decent actioner with solid performances, stellar directing and mind-blowing cinematography. The location work, particularly the scenes shot in London, Paris and the United Arab Emirates, is truly exceptional and effectively simulates the continent-hopping narrative of a James Bond film.

The one thing the “M:I” films have consistently done right, and probably one of the major reasons why people keep turning out to see them, is that each new film ups the ante with its jaw-dropping, gravity-defying stunts and action scenes (like a modern-day Houdini, Cruise is a magician who keeps topping his previous death-defying feats). The last half hour of this film contains a chain of top-notch, heart-stopping action beats that may leave you gasping for air.

If you can get past the “same ole” plot elements, “Mission: Impossible—Fallout” is a riveting, thrilling popcorn flick that ends with a cliff-hanger and seems destined to be followed by another sequel.

Final thought: Hunt’s loyalty and obedience to the IMF is admirable. He accepts assignments immediately and unquestioningly, with no thought toward himself. What would the world be like if Christ followers everywhere were to accept Kingdom assignments in a similar manner? If we proceed in His power, we have nothing to fear. After all, no mission is impossible with God (Luke 1:37).

Trivia Answer

A: Landau was replaced by none other than Mr. Spock himself, Leonard Nimoy. The timing was perfect since Landau’s departure coincided with the cancellation of “Star Trek.” And if that isn’t enough of a coincidence, “Mission: Impossible” and “Star Trek” both premiered in the fall of 1966 and were both developed and owned by Desilu Productions (later Paramount Television).

  • Violence: Very Heavy
  • Vulgar/Crude language: Moderately Heavy
  • Profane language: Moderate
  • Sex: Moderate
  • Nudity: None
  • Occult: None

See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.


Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Comments below:
Positive
Positive—If you’re looking for an “action-packed” movie, you will not be disappointed! I was on the edge of my seat literally for about 85% of the movie. Lots of twists and turns that will keep you riveted to the story. Sadly, one “F” bomb (I gave an “Average” Moral rating because of this), and one mention of “Jesus” as an excited utterance.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Jack G., age 61 (USA)
—Good evening, movie lovers. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to see “Mission: Impossible-Fallout” on the largest screen your funds can afford, and is convenient for you location-wise. This is the best way to ensure a unique experience watching Tom Cruise perform the most amazing, yet insane, stunts ever. The writing, by Academy Award winner Christopher McQuarrie, is stronger than ever. Same goes for the acting, directing, cinematography, etc.

Biblically speaking, there is plenty of violence (mostly bloodless until the action-packed climax), a few misuses of God and Jesus” Names, and some mild and moderate profanities including one use of the f word (a first for the long-running franchise). There are some sexual references in French played for laughs.

It would be best for you to see the preceding five films (or four, if you dislike one installment) before seeing this one. Rated PG-13. This review will self-destruct in five seconds.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
—D, age 32 (USA)
Neutral
Neutral—Your review is fair and balanced. This movie is indeed an almost passé, hackneyed genre. There was nothing creative or innovative in this film. It is the “same ole, same ole” spy thriller we have seen so many dozens of times. The plot is typically convoluted, and the violence is more than plentiful.

What I did like about the movie is the amazing camera work that captured spectacular chase scenes, the good acting by the entire ensemble cast that works with Ethan on his mission, which has a couple of endearing sidekicks who provide much needed levity, and the loyalty of these characters to each other. Ethan tries to be as humane as he can in his inhumane job that requires killing or be killed.

I am glad I saw this on the big screen. If I had watched it on DVD, I probably would not have watched to the end. (Maybe I am too old for this type of movie.)
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Halyna Barannik, age 72 (USA)
Neutral—I want to share that the “Mission: Impossible” film series is not family-friendly. It never was. They are all PG-13 movies, which is not a family-friendly rating.

That said, I wanted to share my thoughts. I felt that it was a very compelling movie. The story and plot were predictable, but it hung me on the edge of my seat with all the stunts and action sequences. What made the film compulsory was you wanted to see how were they going to pull it off. I enjoyed this movie. It kept my heart pounding from beginning to the end.

Unfortunately, there was a moment in this film where it gave me an “ew” feeling. The scene where the white widow woman kisses Ethan Hunt. Tom Cruise is 56 years old. The actress who plays white widow is 30 years old. I felt like she was kissing her father. It gave me an “ew” feeling. Tom Cruise looks old. She looks young. The scene looked sick. See all »div>
My Ratings: Moral rating: Very Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Karen, age 52 (USA)
Negative
Negative—I have seen all the “Mission: Impossible” movies and was looking forward to this one, but was extremely disappointed in it. It feels like a video game for 15 year old boys with action action action, chase chase chase, with a weak storyline that has been done a thousand times and seemed what little plot it had going was an ego trip for Tom Cruise’s character. I went to see this movie with my 33 year old daughter who loves action movies, as I do, and we both repeatedly were looking at our watch asking when this lame piece of work was going to end. Running at almost 2½ hours, it was at least one hour too long.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 3
—Debra S., age 56 (USA)
Negative—I was very disappointed by this movie. I had always considered the “Mission: Impossible” movies somewhat “family” movies, until I saw the most recent in the series. I brought my entire family along for the viewing, to include my 11 year old daughter. I did not read the review beforehand, because I just took it for granted that it would be semi “Clean” like the others. I am sorry to say I was wrong. I was shocked and appalled at the language. When one if the actors muttered the f-word, I lost all respect for the “Mission: Impossible” series. Hollywood will always find a way to taint what was good.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Sherri Washington, age 45 (USA)
Negative—It’s got the greatest helicopter chase in move making history, yet this Mission fails to impress. It’s a bit bland in the first half of the movie, so the writers tried to spice things up by introducing call backs from the previous movies such as Ethan’s ex-wife and White Widows origins, but it still does little to help flavor the plot.

The recipe for “Fallout” is simple. Get some bad guys together with an evil plan that is simple in theory; then make it so overly complicated in practice Langley will feel little need to send in the Impossible Mission Force (IMF). Mix-in an abundance of deja vu moments straight from the last movie. Sprinkle in some cheesy jokes we all heard before. Then bake for two and a half hours and you got yourself the 6th “Mission: Impossible” move.

FYI. The bad guys are called the apostles. Since the word apostles most often refers to early Christian missionaries, I felt it necessary to rate the movie as very offensive.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Very Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Rob, age 25 ()

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