Commenting on the critics with Simon Columb…
Ben Childs managed to see some sort of preview of Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol at the BFI Imax at Waterloo:
“Judging by the quarter-full auditorium at the Waterloo IMAX this morning, studio Paramount’s most difficult mission – should they choose to accept it – will be to build buzz for a belated sequel that no one saw coming, and few really clamoured for. It seems there’s little press interest for MI4, but if the movie does turn out to be a box-office turkey, that would be rather a pity. This is a series which is getting better with age, and there are indications that the new film might be the best instalment yet.”
In the first instance, I caught wind of the buzz a while back and I can’t wait to watch it. The bottom line is that Tom Cruise is a great action star. The Mission: Impossible series is different to many other action-film franchises in that in each film has had very different approach. Brian De Palma’s spy thriller in 1996 was a great take on the film whilst John Woo blew the doors off with M:I-2 and then finally J.J. Abrams tried to make the film a family story in Mission: Impossible III when the film began as Cruise’s wife is held at gun point by the antagonist … played by indie-movie star Philip Seymour Hoffman.
Brad Bird directs the fourth installment and some characters return – Simon Pegg, Ving Rhames – and the strong use of the word ‘abort’ in the trailer and Renner’s accusatory “we all have secrets Ethan…” indicates we go back to its roots by referring to the first film of the franchise.
I hope Childs is right about the quality of the film – because, especially in sequels, the word-of-mouth is paramount. If people are talking about the film, as Ben Childs does, by saying it is the “best of all four”, you will be talking big money. But we all remember the mixed reviews of something like Tron: Legacy and, indeed, the box-office was nowhere near as good as it should’ve been.
The clock is indeed ticking…
Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol is released in the U.K. on December 26th after opening in North America on December 16th.