movies: mission impossible 3

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

mission impossible 3 - your mission, should you choose to accept it...Originally I hadn't intended on going to see Mission: Impossible III, but since The New World (which I originally wanted to see) doesn't seem to be playing anywhere in the state for some unknown reason, I had to settle for Cruisefest III...

Each MI movie seems to get further and further away from the original Mission Impossible concept as I remember it from the late 80's revival version... the original movie was possibly the closest, then the second was essentially a James Bond movie without the Bond... then this seems to just be a random action movie that happens to have MI additions.

While I (like a large proportion of the world I would imagine) am pretty much over Tom as a person, I have to give him his due... for the most part you actually forget all that TomKat nonsense during the movie... granted, you're not given a whole lot of time to actually do any thinking, but I don't know, given the movie, that that's necessarily a bad thing.

I am a fan of J.J. Abrams though, mostly from his work on Lost (although I have enjoyed the odd episode of Alias... I'm just not sure that he makes the transition from episodic teevee to feature film all that well.

Don't get me wrong, the movie was entertaining... and 100% action packed... and full of attractive (the edible Jonathan Rhys Meyers and, to a lesser degree, Billy Crudup), familiar (Ving Rhames, back again for a third paycheck) or unexpected (the actually surprisingly good "action version" of Keri Russell) casting... and the beautiful Michelle Monaghan gets another chance to shine (well, she does as much as she can with what she's given)... but, it was really all a bit been there, seen that, blown it all up before...

It almost felt as though they had taken the scripts from the first two movies and plucked out pieces of plot and then mashed them about a bit and filled in the gaps with random stock plot. And maybe they did... it had been offered to two other directors and been mangled around, sorry, in development at that stage, then it got further "development" after J.J. came on board... characters dropped, script rewritten... and while it does all hold together, when you do start to think about it after it's over and you can engage your brain again, it all feels like stuff we've seen before.

They didn't really even give the locations a chance to shine... Berlin, The Vatican City (or at least some part of Rome that doubled for it), Shanghai... there were no really amazingly lush visuals... yeah, one or two quick establishing shots, but that's about it... most of the rest of it seemed to have been filmed inside rooms or studio sets.

And I'm not really sure that having the movie start in the "present" before it "flashes back" to the start of the story was really the best way to handle it... I think keeping more of an element of surprise about what you think is going to happen would have worked a little better for this particular movie.

I was also disappointed that, without giving too much away, when Tom's character goes into the big impenetrable building to get the random plot device, they don't even bother showing us what happens inside... we get stuck outside in the van with the underused offsiders, Jonathan and Maggie Q...

And Muse was right... Tom does spend far too much time running in his movies... I think he spends about a quarter of MI3 (and most of that in the latter half) running in some form or another...

yani's rating: 7 Rabbit's Feet out of 10

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