In a departure from normal protocol, Agent Ethan Hunt is not necessarily given a choice to accept the mission in this instalment of Mission Impossible. Hot on the trail of “Cobalt” (the mandatory code-name for a MI villain), things go horribly wrong and “Ghost Protocol” is activated which basically disowns Agent Hunt and the entire IMF, and to further complicate things, the IMF’s secretary is also assassinated which basically leaves Agent Hunt and his team with practically no support of any kind.
What Cobalt’s plan is and how Hunt and his rag tag team of Jane Carter, Benji Dunn and intelligence analyst William Brandt try and thwart his plans make up for the rest of the movie. while the story pretty much moves on predictable lines, what makes this movie stand apart from the rest of other spy movies and makes it the best in the MI franchise is the sheer scale of this movie.
From blowing up a part of the Kremlin to the amazingly crazy unbelievable action sequence shot at the Burj Khalifa, Dubai, this movie has to be the grandest in terms of imagination for a spy-action genre. The fact that Tom Cruise manages to bring his A-game to the screen in terms of performance and the style with which he portrays Ethan Hunt is a huge bonus. He doesn’t look a day older than Jeremy Renner (who plays William Brandt, and who is 9 yrs younger than Cruise is) and kudos to the efforts that the entire crew of this movie has put in to pull off some amazing stunts on screen.
Simon Pegg as Benji brings his trademark style of British comedy on screen and portrays the role of the ‘gadget guru’ (once again a mandatory items of all movies of the MI franchise, and all spy-action movies in general). Paula Patton also is quite commendable and plays her role decently enough.
All said and done I liked this movie and liked it a lot. Having said that, WTF were the movie makers thinking bringing in the entire India angle to the story. Whoever did their research on India and whoever was in charge of designing the sets, props for this section completely messed it up. While I had read articles and seen leaked photographs of the India sets on the web, I didn’t realize that a studio as big as Paramount and producers such as Tom Cruise and JJ Abrams would end up overlooking such shoddy work. I mean, if it was so hard and inconvenient for them to recreate India on a set, they might as well have shot that entire sequence in any other country where it would have been easier for them to shoot a movie. The fact that this portion seemed to have been added to pander to the Indian audiences is something that I find hard to believe given the fact that Indians anyways download movies for free and watch them.
Another question I have in this regard – What was decided first? The casting of Anil Kapoor which forced the makers to select India as one of the locations for the action to take place, or the choice of India which forced the selection of Anil Kapoor as one of the characters. In any case, to summarize, both India and Anil Kapoor have been wasted in the movie completely, and there is not even an ounce of saving grace in this regard.
If Indian viewers are willing to overlook the extremely stereotypical version of Indian streets, traffic, etc during the climactic sequence, this movie is good fun. Tight screenplay, decent story telling, awesome stunts, and Tom Cruise performing as Ethan Hunt, all of these are really compelling reasons to watch this movie.