Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt hasn't lost a step (even with a broken foot), if the early Mission: Impossible - Fallout reviews are any indication. In fact, if the first wave of critic reactions are to be believed, Fallout might be The Dark Knight or Mad Max: Fury Road of Mission: Impossible movies, in the sense that it sets a new bar for the franchise as a whole. And all it took was Cruise nearly killing himself several times over, along with Henry Cavill's glorious facial hair.
Paramount is clearly confident about the project, seeing as the studio lifted the Fallout social media reactions embargo immediately after it screened the movie for members of the press in Paris this week. The film, which is the second entry in the series written and directed by Christopher McQuarrie after Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation, won't even hit U.S. theaters for another two weeks. Nevertheless, the review embargo has already been lifted and, so far, critics seems to think quite highly of what Cruise, McQuarrie, and their team have accomplished.
Fallout picks up with Ethan and his IMF team after a mission gone wrong leaves them scrambling to save the day, even with a dangerous CIA assassin (Cavill) in hot pursuit. Rebecca Ferguson and Sean Harris reprise their Rogue Nation roles as Ilsa Faust and Solomon Lane here, along with Alec Baldwin, series mainstays Simon Pegg and Ving Rhames, and newcomer Angela Bassett as Cavill's boss. There's no Jeremy Renner this time since the actor was busy not appearing in Avengers: Infinity War, but it sounds like Fallout turned out great even without him. For more on that, check out these SPOILER-FREE excerpts from the first reviews.
Robert Abele - The Wrap
At nearly two and a half hours, it’s designed to test your patience for the things that matter in these movies - violent confrontation, deception, jokey camaraderie, and over-the-top action - but it does so with a remarkably re-engaged fluidity of purpose. The only filmmaker to return to the franchise for a second go-round, writer-director Christopher McQuarrie... [has] proven to be a sharp and dedicated keeper of the flame, from first drawn gun to last cliffside stunt.
Chris Nashawaty - EW
At this point in Hollywood’s franchise-fatigue cycle, it’s rare to see a sequel (nevermind a fifth one) one-upping itself. Fallout is a unique exception that defies our seen-it-all cynicism. It’s the kind of pure, straight-no-chaser pop fun that not only keeps taking your breath away over and over again, it restores your occasionally shaky faith in summer blockbusters.
Karen Han - /Film
Directed by Rogue Nation’s Christopher McQuarrie, Fallout does nothing if not cement Mission: Impossible as the greatest franchise we currently have, and manages it by leaning fully into the near-demented earnestness given tangible shape in Cruise’s running. It hurtles along at such a breakneck speed that it might as well combust, and that even talking about it almost feels like spoiling it, as the temptation is to name every insane set piece in simple awe.
Todd McCarthy - THR
Loaded with extended sequences that show Tom Cruise doing what look like real - and really dangerous - stunts all over central Paris and London, in addition to more far-flung destinations and on almost any means of transportation you care to name, writer-director Christopher McQuarrie's second outing on the [Mission: Impossible] series tops what he did with Cruise three years ago with Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation, which is saying something.
Peter Debruge - Variety
[Christopher McQuarrie] clearly believes in creating coherent set pieces... He places audiences just over Cruise’s shoulder, or staring into the actor’s face as he grimaces with exertion. Ethan Hunt has never met an impossible mission, and yet, audiences need to believe that this one could get away from him for the thrill to work. Here, with everything that he’s ever cared about on the line, Hunt proves why he’s summer’s most valuable action hero.
Richard Lawson - Vanity Fair
Though Fallout has some definitive conclusions, it leaves Ethan’s world open enough to invite in whatever other new criminal catastrophe might await. If the antics are as dizzyingly high-grade as Fallout’s, I eagerly welcome the next installment. McQuarrie’s film is the most fun you’re likely to have at the movies this season, a riot mounted with precision, a melee in which every punch and crunch is considered. I worry for Cruise’s safety should he continue to make these films, but he at least seems to be in the best possible hands.
All in all, it sounds like McQuarrie hit another home run in his second time at bat on the Mission: Impossible franchise. As heavily as Paramount leaned on Cruise's death-defying stunts to market Fallout (including, his skydiving jump from a plane 25,000 feet in the air), the reviews suggest the movie delivers not only some of the most thrilling scenes and set pieces in the series yet, but among 2018 action films overall. It further appears that Fallout has the greatest stakes, both emotional and plot-wise, out of the six Mission: Impossible adventures released to date.
Now that we've entered the back-half of 2018's summer movie season, it's encouraging to hear that there are great blockbusters like Fallout to look forward to, along with the various independent films going into limited release in August (see Searching, Skate Kitchen, and so on). Here's to hoping general audiences enjoy Mission: Impossible - Fallout as much as critics have, up to this point.
Source: Various (see the links above)
- Mission: Impossible - Fallout (2018) release date: Jul 27, 2018