Cruise CON­TROL MovieRe­view

Winnipeg Free Press - Section D - - FRONT PAGE -

DES­PER­A­TION. It’s a driv­ing force in all the Mis­sion: Im­pos­si­ble movies, as Tom Cruise’s per­pet­u­ally re­source­ful hero Ethan Hunt strug­gles to win through against odds that seem... well, see the ti­tle.

But there is an un­der­cur­rent of a dif­fer­ent kind of des­per­a­tion in this fifth en­try in the re­li­ably en­ter­tain­ing fran­chise. It ra­di­ates be­yond the cri­sis in its sto­ry­line.

kicks off with the much pub­li­cized stunt that saw Cruise cling­ing to the door of a cargo plane as it takes off. In the movie, Cruise’s char­ac­ter is try­ing to pre­vent the plane from tak­ing off with a ship­ment of ter­ror­ist-bound bombs.

Here’s the thing: The scene is ut­terly gra­tu­itous and does noth­ing to set the stage for the story. Rather, we are sim­ply in­vited to gaze at the won­der that is Tom Cruise as he seems to risk his life for the sake of a movie.

One be­comes aware of this look-atme dy­namic through­out the film. And frankly, it’s get­ting a lit­tle off-putting, es­pe­cially — you’ve heard this com­plaint be­fore — for a fran­chise that’s sup­posed to be about a team, not an in­di­vid­ual.

In a plot that seems bor­rowed from a Bond movie ( in par­tic­u­lar), Ethan finds him­self up against a mys­te­ri­ous or­ga­ni­za­tion known as The Syn­di­cate, a dark-mir­ror im­age of the Im­pos­si­ble Mis­sion Force ded­i­cated to cre­at­ing in­sta­bil­ity and malaise af­flict­ing western pow­ers. As he is gain­ing head­way in his in­ves­ti­ga­tion, cranky CIA di­rec­tor Alan Hun­ley (Alec Bald­win) pulls the plug on the IMF, leav­ing Hunt to carry on his in­ves­ti­ga­tion solo, tar­geted by both friends and en­e­mies alike.

Ethan’s main lead is the in­evitably beau­ti­ful Bri­tish spy Ilsa Faust (Re­becca Fer­gu­son) who saved him from tor­ture and death when he was cap­tured by The Syn­di­cate’s icy, sadis­tic chief­tain Lane (Sean Harris).

But even a su­per­spy needs help. Ethan en­lists tech geek/wannabe field agent Benji (Si­mon Pegg) to case a per­for­mance of in Vi­enna, where mem­bers of

Star­ring Tom Cruise and Re­becca Fer­gu­son

Grant Park, Kil­do­nan Place, McGil­livray, McGil­livray VIP Polo Park, Polo Park IMAX, St. Vi­tal, Towne. PG 131 min­utes

1/2 out of five

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