Tag Archives: Michelle Monaghan

My Favorite Scene: Mission Impossible: Fallout (2018) “Extracting Lane”

Mission: Impossible Fallout’s Best Scene

Mission Impossible: Fallout defied the two defining trends of 2018 at the films. It exceeded the wildest expectations anyone had for the sixth film in a 22-year-old series, and it managed to be the poster child for how franchises can be amazing in a year when franchise fatigue seemed to reach a new level of punishing. Not only is Fallout the best MI film, but it’s also arguably the best film of last year and the best action film since at least Mad Max: Fury Road. The film manages to weave a coherent and compelling plot around a series of action set pieces that play like a compelling audition tape for the creation of a Best Stunt Work Oscar category. No matter what kind of action scene is your personal favorite (skydive; gunfight; fist fight; crashes; explosions; and chases by foot, helicopter, motorcycle, and car) Fallout does them and does them as well as any film ever has.

Sean Harris in MIssion Impossible: Fallout
Sean Harris in MIssion Impossible: Fallout (2018)

Picking one of those set pieces to elevate over the others is a tough call. The HALO jump is astonishing. Cruise and Cavill’s restroom rumble is fantastic. My favorite sequence of the film though is the extraction of the film’s villain, Solomon Lane, from custody and the ensuing madness in Paris. Director Christopher McQuarrie, who also wrote the film, crafted a masterful action sequence in which an improvising Ethan Hunt has to figure out a way to break his nemesis out of a moving armored convoy while minimizing any collateral damage intended by his allies of the moment. The sequence, which also highlights the film’s gorgeous cinematography and score by Lorne Balfe, typifies what I think is Fallout’s best move: humanizing Ethan Hunt. There’s more characterization for Ethan in this film than in the previous five combined and, with a few exceptions, most of is done in the beats between actions. He’s tired in this film. Always so cocksure and calculated, Hunt spends a lot of Fallout looking out-of-breath and in overt exasperated disbelief at some of the things he still has to do to keep the world safe. Tom Cruise, at age 56, finally lets his character look his age, and I think he’s a more interesting protagonist for it. Fallout a bar for quality that’s going to be a near (brace for it) impossible standard for future installments of the franchise to follow. If there’s a flaw in the film, I can’t find it.

Mission Impossible Fallout Poster

Mission: Impossible – Fallout Trailer #3 (2018) “What’s Done is Done When We Say It’s Done”

 

The third full trailer for Mission: Impossible – Fallout has been released; or the first international one.  This trailer contains nearly all-new footage that last week’s, so it’s a departure from most international trailers, which tend to be remixes of the domestic.  The sixth film in the franchise, written and directed by returning Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation director Christopher McQuarrie, finds Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and the IMF team seemingly paying for a lifetime of tough choices.  Despite three full trailers, they’ve managed to give little away about the film’s plot, other than the return of Michelle Monaghan, who played Hunt’s wife in MI3 and MI4, seems to indicate this is going to get extremely personal for the IMF operative.  Other than that, all we know for sure is that Hunt’s team is going to run afoul of the CIA and that there will be extended scenes of Tom Cruise running and jumping off of various edifices.

In case you think it’s just you, it’s not.  Tom Cruise has made an entire career of running at top speed through films.  And, why yes, I HAVE included a comprehensive supercut of all his running scenes below.

The Mission: Impossible franchise launched in 1966 with the original CBS television series, which ran for seven seasons and 171 episodes. Mission: Impossible returned in 1988 with a rebooted series on ABC. It failed to find an audience, however, and was canceled after two seasons. It was nearly a decade later that the Tom Cruise-led Mission: Impossible feature film would turn the small screen spy series into a hugely-successful cinematic franchise.

Christopher McQuarrie, who previously helmed Mission: Impossible Rogue Nation, is once again writing and directing the Paramount Pictures sequel, which opens in theaters on July 27, 2018.

Mission Impossible Fallout Poster

 

Mission: Impossible – Fallout Trailer #2 (2018) “Some Missions Are Not a Choice”

The second full trailer for Mission: Impossible – Fallout has been released.  The sixth film in the franchise, written and directed by returning Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation director Christopher McQuarrie, finds Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and the IMF team seemingly paying for a lifetime of tough choices.  Hopefully, given Cruise’s age and declining box office appeal, this will be the finale or at least a transition for the franchise, which-aside from the regrettable second installment, has been one of the longest-running, best franchises in all of movies.  Cruise has been playing Ethan Hunt now for 22 years…which should make all of us feel extremely old (including Cruise).

Mission: Impossible – Fallout finds Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and his IMF team (Alec Baldwin, Simon Pegg, Ving Rhames) along with some familiar allies (Rebecca Ferguson, Michelle Monaghan) in a race against time after a mission gone wrong. Henry Cavill, Angela Bassett, and Vanessa Kirby also join the cast.

The Mission: Impossible franchise launched in 1966 with the original CBS television series, which ran for seven seasons and 171 episodes. Mission: Impossible returned in 1988 with a rebooted series on ABC. It failed to find an audience, however, and was canceled after two seasons. It was nearly a decade later that the Tom Cruise-led Mission: Impossible feature film would turn the small screen spy series into a hugely-successful cinematic franchise.

Christopher McQuarrie, who previously helmed Mission: Impossible Rogue Nation, is once again writing and directing the Paramount Pictures sequel, which opens in theaters on July 27, 2018.

Mission Impossible Fallout Poster

 

Movie Review: Patriots Day (2016) *Boston Strong*

Mark Wahlberg, Patriots Day

The Boston Marathon bombings are still a fresh wound for the country, even more so in Boston, so a movie about them so quickly at first glance seems too soon.  However, enter Peter Berg and Mark Wahlberg who are on a roll turning horrific tragedies and current events issues which normally spiral off into larger debates (The War in Afghanistan, environmental impact, terrorism) into focused stories on the heroism of  the day.  Some people go their whole lives without having a day.  But if you’ve had one, you know that the rest of your life is viewed in light of what happened before that day and what came after.  It’s for the people who had these days that Berg is making these films.  Deepwater Horizon (which only came out months ago) reminded us that it wasn’t just a horrid environmental disaster; it cost 11 people their lives.  Patriots Day‘s scope is larger than Deepwater’s by a factor of ten. It’s Berg’s best film yet, Mark Wahlberg’s best performance of his career, features an outstanding cast of some of the best character actors working, and the end result is a memorial to a city that stood strong during a day that will forever be etched into its psyche. Continue reading Movie Review: Patriots Day (2016) *Boston Strong*

Trailer Time: Patriot’s Day Trailer #3 (2017) *The Only Thing You Have To Fight Back With is Love*

Deepwater Horizon is one of the most underrated films of 2016, but for those of us that saw it, we saw a bond between an actor and a director beginning to churn out greatness.  Lone Survivor, Deepwater, and now Patriots Day have teamed Peter Berg and Mark Wahlberg in intense stories that are timely, human, and powerful.  The Boston Marathon bombing was, in many ways, the best we can hope for in this war against senselessness.  An entire city rallied instantly in the face of a horrific act and the fear that more was to come, and-in the end-played out on every TV in the country, the teamwork produced justice.  Boston strong, man.  And I’m a Yankees fan, so that takes a lot!  Patriots Day is getting a select cities release to qualify it for awards season, but will open wide January 13, 2017.
Continue reading Trailer Time: Patriot’s Day Trailer #3 (2017) *The Only Thing You Have To Fight Back With is Love*