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Mission Impossible Gets Sillier But Slicker With Every Segment



Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning  Part One

Rating: ** ½

Am I  allowed  to say this? I didn’t like  the  seventh film in the MI series.

There, I said it!

 The  film is shallow and selfimportant.  And  the  two ‘key’(pun intended) stunt sequences(all about two halves  of a key)   are  done with such solemn derringdo  that it feels like we are being obliged with them. Like, ‘Well, guys, this is what you  expect.So here  you are.Enjoy.

Enjoyment and  glamour are  first-cousins. You can’t assume  either in your personality. Either  you are  glamorous or not. Entertainment too cannot be thrust on the audience. Pavlovian responses  to the  MI  series have long stopped. The if-it-is-MI-it’s-got-to-be-fun line of thought has been discarded.

We want solid proof of why this action Franchise must continue to thrive. The new instalment, I am afraid,provides  no proof of the pudding. It plods along.Like  a train with no  brain.

And yes, tragically  Tom Cruise has  begun to appear bone-weary  and, again dare I say it, aged. He still gives us heartstopping stunts. But it is  all a little like  an aging dowager insisting on  singing for her  friends at dinner when her voice has begun to  crack.

Luckily, there are  no cracks in Cruise’s  personality. He  is still agile and  still the  handsomest and most charming superstar in the  universe. So  all Cruise watchers can  breathe easy.

I wish the plot allowed  itself breathing space.It hurls through basically three  suspense action interludes: the  airport  chase sequence, the  handcuffed car chase and the climactic train thrills(which reminded me  of  two Dharmendra starrers  Yaadon Ki  Baraat and Sholay).

Take  away the three above-mentioned sequences and  what have we  got? Practically nothing except a bunch of selfimportant agents, rogue and double-rogue ,discussing  basically how to destroy the  world in a  highly technical jargon which we are not meant to understand beyond the basics.

A  lot of of the most crucial  drama(droll and undistinguished)  involve masks and  double  identities. The talented Vanessa Kirby gets to do a Seeta Aur Geeta on board the  Orient Express.

Seriously? Masks  and  masquerades  went out of style  with Cyrano . Mission Impossible thinks  it can create a futuristic killer-actioner out of  nostalgia.It gets high marks  for  ambition, practically zero for  originality in execution.

The most interesting character  is  that of a coldblooded female assassin  played by Pom Klementieff. She dies with tears trickling down from the corner of  her eye. And we  don’t feel anything. This is neither the time nor place to get emotional.

There is  love too. Oh yes, Our hero Ethan Hawke falls in love with a  globally wanted thief and imposter named Grace, played by Hayley Atwell who sports  a startled look right through the lengthy  film. Maybe she was the  only member of  the cast who was honest enough to admit to herself that she didn’t know what flock was going on.

Incidentally—and this is  not a  spoiler—Ethan and Grace’s chemistry doesn’t show on screen. Just goes to show,Tom Cruise is in love only with himself.


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