How is it possible for a franchise to just outdo itself and improve upon each new instalment? The only other one that comes close is The Fast and the Furious (2001 - ). Tom Cruise and the directors he picks for each new entry deserve massive amounts of praise for continuously blowing expectations out of the water and delivering exciting, daring moviemaking. For a sixth film to not only be this good or even the best in the franchise, but one of the bets action movies ever made is remarkable. Basically this review is going to be nothing but heaps of praise for a movie that left me wholly satisfied and engaged every one of my senses.
When I first heard that Christopher McQuarrie, director of the previous instalment Rogue Nation (2015), was to return for this film I was a little concerned. The rotation of a new director is what has made each of these films so distinct and brilliant each time and with the same director returning I was worried that the enthusiasm and passion may lessen and result in something disappointing. This is what happened when Sam Mendes blew everyone away with Skyfall (2012) and then failed to reach the same heights again with Spectre (2015) for James Bond. After watching Fallout it makes perfect sense why McQuarrie returned here as it is very much a direct sequel to Rogue Nation.
Having this chance to continue the story he helped craft in the previous film definitely gave McQuarrie the time to improve his craft. Just looking at this film is beautiful, from the cinematography to the directing, the tense nature of the action scenes and the story that never slows down or gets boring, everything is perfect. It goes without saying that Tom Cruise himself deserves a lot of praise too as he if the driving force behind these movies. Without his commitment, dedication and just how much he cares about this franchise, it’s possible that this franchise would have never survived past the second film with someone else involved in the lead role. By now most know just how crazy Cruise is when it comes to the stunts and how much he puts his own life in danger for our entertainment, but you can’t deny the results. In terms of acting performance, he’s rivalled here by Henry Cavill as CIA assassin, August Walker.
Cruise and Cavill share much of the first hour together and the two are electric together, playing off each other with a spark that ignites in some terrifically choreographed and brutal action scenes, the bathroom fight in Paris for one. Not to discredit the rest of the cast though, Simon Pegg and Ving Rhames are in reliably good form as the comedic duo of the film, Benji and Luther. Rebecca Ferguson makes a welcome return as IIsa Faust, continuing to be the best female character of the entire franchise and Sean Harris as antagonist Solomon Lane has officially become the best villain of the franchise. Having these films be centred around Ethan Hunt and his team is what gives the films their heart and the reason the action scenes are always so exciting, because they are always character driven.
The final result of Fallout is an insanely tense and often heart-pounding action thriller that draws upon aspects of every Mission: Impossible, but is something entirely unique and special. It’s an experience that I feel is missing from the cinema nowadays. As much as I love superheroes and impossible things brought to life with CGI, it’s exhilarating when a Mission Impossible film comes along and shows us all how it’s done with real stunts, real locations and very real injury. Special mention must go to the composer here who has provided the best music for the series so far, as well as the opening credits which were by far the most exciting they’ve ever been. The camera captures everything so perfectly that everything looks so crisp and clear, with action scenes that are tense, brutal and immersive. There are even emotional moments that caught me off guard that really make you realise just how far we’ve come with some of these characters. Fallout has a prefect mix of everything that makes a truly great film and one I’m afraid not enough people are going to see. The franchise really has made each film better than the last except M:I 2 (2000) and it’ll be hard to keep the quality the same from here, but if they want to try a seventh time then they should definitely go for it.