Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Mission: Impossible III (2006)

Following on from Brian De Palma's first film and John Woo's second, J.J. Abrams takes the helm for his first feature film to bring us a third instalment of Ethan Hunt's IMF activities. MI:III is a very slick and stylish film with some tremendous action sequences; stunt director Vic Armstrong designed the stunts so that Tom Cruise could do them all, and he did! This only egged Philip Seymour Hoffman on to get involved too, and so the final showdown fight is actually Tom and PSH throwing each other through doors and windows. This all adds a certain amount of realism to the proceedings.

Tom is fine as usual as Ethan Hunt; more than anything else he is an action star, and for this he is just right. PSH is an unusual choice as a baddie, but his gravitas really works and gives his character Owen Davian much greater depth. I had to look up his character's name on IMDB, and that's perhaps a criticism of the film; you don't really feel that you bond with any of the characters. I mean, we know Ethan, but I don't feel that we get to know any of the other characters or know the justification for their actions.

However, MI:III is an action film first and foremost, and as such completely succeeds. Competently directed, well acted and some thumping action.