My in-laws wanted to watch it at our place, so we rented it for them on iTunes and invited them over. I thought I might sour on this, because my second screening was at a not-great theatre with a tiny screen and bad speakers (the worst way to watch this movie), and it felt like watching this through a tin can. But in my own home, with the subwoofer bumping, this was great. 

The exposition remains ridiculous. The action sequences are frequently exhilarating (the car chase, the train finale), but it feels like the editor behind those finely crafted scenes was locked in a closet for the rest of the film. It’d be very easy to knock 30 minutes of exposition off the negative. 

But the action and general professionalism of this thing is off the charts. The visual staging is excellent (personal foibles about silly camera angles aside), and the clarity that comes from holding a camera still for more than 3 seconds and clearly arranging visual elements in the frame is an area where Mission:Impossible is leagues ahead of the competition. 

So what I’m saying is that this is a smartly staged, well crafted action thriller that runs long in the tooth, but is frequently exhilarating. Maybe this wouldn’t have been top tier filmmaking in 2001, but in 2023, it more than clears the bar for excellence (whether that’s a sign of changing tastes or the cinematic apocalypse is up for personal interpretation). 

This is probably the weakest recent entry in the series, but it’s hard to remember a 4‑film stretch from any other current franchise as good as Ghost Protocol, Rogue Nation, Fallout, and Dead Reckoning 1

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