Dir: Christopher McQuarrie | Cast: Rebecca Ferguson, Tom Cruise, Hayley Atwell, Pom Klementieff, Vanessa Kirby, Simon Pegg, Esai Morales, Indira Varma, Mark Gatiss | US Actioner 163′
If you dreaded the phrase ‘to be continued’ at the end of an episode of the ‘X Files’, the words ‘Part One’ on the seventh and newest instalment of the Mission Impossible franchise may have an ominous ring but this only adds to the anticipation in this latest outing. And you certainly get your money’s worth on this peripatetic romp through Europe in search of a jewelled key to open who knows what: Tom Cruise (at 61 – occasionally raddled but reassuringly on form) pits his wits against a venal antihero Gabriel (Esai Morales), and scenery to die for – not to mention the spectacular stunts (Rebecca Ferguson performed her own after months of training).
The latest adventure sees Ethan Hunt (Cruise) and his IMF team embarking on their most dangerous mission yet: To track down a terrifying new entity that could signal the end of the world should it fall into the wrong hands. At the same time dark forces from Ethan’s past threaten to close in unleashing this deadly race around the globe. In the face of this mysterious, omnipotent enemy Ethan is forced to accept that nothing is more important than his mission, not even the lives of those he cares for most (yes there’s romance too!).
And this latest Mission certainly delivers the goods, there are plenty of laughs (most of them I hope intentional, courtesy of Simon Pegg), the enormous budget is well-used with spectacular set pieces and an ingenious script from McQuarrie and his co-writer Erik Jendresen (based on the Bruce Geller TV series). There two terrific scenes employing Venice as a back drop, there’s an incredible climax involving a locomotive plunging off a bridge, and amidst all that testosterone boasts a fearsome foursome of femmes fatales. @Richard Chatten