22 April 2013

Getting Back On Track

In Mission: Impossible 3, Ethan Hunt is no longer a field agent having instead decided to become an IMF trainer. I often wonder what actors draw from for a role but when Tom Cruise plays a man who trains people in the secrets of a slightly sinister and shadowy organisation, I think I can pretty much guess. However he's roped back in to going out on missions when his most prized student is captured by Philip Seymour Hoffman, which just goes to show how good a teacher he must have been if the person who’s learnt the most from him can be captured by Truman Capote. I assume whilst this is going on, his worst student is getting stabbed to death by Julie Andrews with a butterfly knife.

Sadly, his protégées rescue doesn't quite go to plan as the villains have stuck an exploding-bomb thing in her head and Hunt incompetently forgot to check for it. This exploding-bomb thing basically causes her to get a sharp pain in her brain resulting in excruciating agony followed by death and an embarrassingly gozzy eye. If you can't imagine it from that description, then the whole process plays out very much like my actions after a few days without jizzing

It's not just the whispers that are careless.
The rest of the film then involves Hunt running around after a presumably dangerous device known as the Rabbit’s Foot. As a sort of in-joke however, we're never told what this thing actually is. Instead the filmmakers make no attempt to hide the fact that it's a MacGuffin and so exists solely to move the plot along. I should explain for anybody unaware of the term that famously, other examples of a MacGuffin might be the briefcase in Pulp Fiction, the stolen money in Psycho and a kebab/cock combo in the life of George Michael.

No Touching!
In his search for the Rabbit’s Foot, there's one point when Hunt and his team are forced to break into Vatican city to collect clues. The way they do this is very exciting and involves exploding cars, climbing high walls and impressive security disabling devices. Maybe that's how you had to do that back when the film was released in 2006 but these days it's a piece of piss to break into Peado-Land. Either Cruise can use his height to his advantage and dress up as a bleeding choir boy with a limp or now I reckon you could just dress up as a fake Pope. Ever since Pope Palpatine retired and Pope Jeffrey Tambor took over there must be so many new faces there that it's easy to lose track of whatever creepy bigot is now in charge.

However they instead decide to try a different technique of disguising Hunt with a Philip Seymour Hoffman mask. Personally I think this is probably my favourite scene in the film just because of how it starts off ridiculous and then somehow ends up being shockingly amazing. Basically the camera stays on Cruise as he puts on an obviously crappy Leatherface style mask and then smoothes out the corners to somehow become the villain. It's kind of like visiting a magician when one second he's doing shitty card tricks and the next you're so impressed by something they've done that you have to stab them in the heart and burn them at the stake for witchcraft. This then leads to a really cool scene in which Hunt-in-the-mask fights the real man he's pretending to be. So basically what you're left with is a chubby smack-down between two Philip Seymour Hoffmans. Considering an actor fighting himself has happened in such quality films as Double Impact and The 6th Day it's good to see that the star of The Master is as good an actor as the Muscles from Brussels and the Austrian Pervert.

I'm pretty sure that's Jeffrey Jones in suave-paedo mode.
Speaking of The Master, anybody who knows anything about it will be aware that it's a story involving a creepy brainwashing cult that definitely isn't scientology. In that film, Hoffman plays a confident but deluded control freak who coincidentally shares several qualities with L. Ron Hubbard or as he's known, The Captain of the Bullshit Enterprise. It's therefore quite fun to watch a scene later on where Hoffman kicks the living crap out of Hunt. Having seen The Master and knowing about Cruises's love for that weird alien fan club, it's quite fun to pretend that we're watching him being punished by his loving leader for breaking one of their commandments. I don't know if Scientology has any commandments but if they do then I'd have to guess they include, “Thou shall give us all of your money”, followed by “Thou shall not see us for what we are”.

Kidnapping is like a blind-date, only with more surprises...
Aside from Hoffman however another significant addition to the franchise is that of Michelle Monaghan who, as always, is brilliant. I mean she's basically playing the same sassy character that she does in every film she's in but I've decided that I love her so fuck you! In fact, my appreciation for her goes further than simply being a fan and quite deeply into a creepy kind of belief that we should be spending our lives together. Some people sadly never find their soul mate whereas I have to accept that if I did ever meet mine she would definitely issue a restraining order against me and to be fair, I wouldn't blame her.

Although she plays a minor role in this film, her involvement actually alters the second half of the action. The Mission: Impossible Series had been criticised in the past for focusing on Cruises character rather than that of a team as the original television series had done. In the first half of this film however, we're finally treated to IMF working together in a group. That is until Hoffman crosses a huge line by kidnapping Monaghan who happens to be Hunts wife. After that act of shear unforgivable cuntishness, things settle back down into more of a Cruise centred film. I didn't watch the original series so as far as I'm concerned, these films can play it how they like. As long as someone is there to prevent any harm to the woman I'll one day stalk then I don't mind what they do.

So it's probably obvious by now that I think Mission: Impossible 3 is really great fun. Considering the last film dribbled out from the arsehole of boredom, this was the adrenaline shot to the balls that this series really needed. Of course, the man who can be credited for this sudden rise in quality is J.J. Abrams who seems to be making a career out of resurrecting the bloated, grey corpses of previously murdered franchises. Thankfully, he realised that these films are all about a constant barrage of set pieces and silliness and so quickly delivered like a postman on crack. I'm not sure what film he's working on right now but I suspect it'll be quite small after burdening himself with something as big as Star Trek Into Darkness. Whatever low budget film he's presumably mulling over, I wish him all the best of luck and may the force be with him, always!

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