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Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (some scenes in IMAX)


Stars: Tom Cruise, Paula Patton, Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg, Léa Seydoux, Michael Nykvist, Tom Wilkinson, Ving Rhames

Director: Brad Bird

There's lots of mighty tasty action in this latest mission (number 4 in the series), which shouldn't disappoint fans of the franchise.

Taking in about as many exotic locations as a James Bond film, Ethan Hunt (Cruise) becomes a rogue agent after the IMF secretary (an unbilled Wilkinson) is summarily dispatched, following which Ethan and his crew. whip-smart agent Patton, mysterious analyst Renner and computer nerd Pegg, chase after the film's 'McGuffin' - a case containing the codes to a nuclear launcher.

Some of the fastest and giddiest stunts yet devised - with Cruise shouldering as much of the action as the insurers will allow - include a fiercely-paced escape from a Russian prison, car chases galore, a pursuit through a sandstorm, and a vertiginous climb by Cruise up Dubai's tallest building, with only 'sticky' gloves between him and oblivion.

The makers certainly surpass themselves in these scenes, even if the plot is as old hat as in Bond's early days. You may smile as Cruise sketches an accurate picture of the villain (an underused Nykvist from the original Dragon Tattoo film, hardly getting a chance to strut his stuff) on the palm of his hand in just a few seconds, but there's no denying the actor's commitment to the role.

Performances, in fact, are all good, apart from Anil Kapoor's Indian sub-villain, while, judging by the ending, Mission 5 will be blasting off from the drawing-boards any day now.

David Quinlan

USA 2011. UK Distributor: Paramount. Colour by deluxe.
137 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 12A.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 1, Drugs 0, Swearing 0.

Review date: 23 Dec 2011