“Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation” (Movie Review)

 Tom Cruise                             

Tom Cruise                             

“Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation” is an action adventure film starring Thomas Cruise Mapother IV, a young up and coming actor who got his start in Hollywood on the set of ABC’s “Lost.”

I think it’s safe to say he’s found his way in this suspenseful film, where he plays Ethan Hawke, a down-on-his-luck International Monetary Fund (IMF) agent, on the run from the nefarious CIA (the same guys responsible for the cheat codes that accompanied Nintendo’s Iran Contra) while also in pursuit of Hydra, a terrorist organization founded by British Intelligence that went rogue and perpetuated multiple horrific acts around the world.   

Jack Donaghy plays CIA Director Alan Alda, a man set on disbanding the IMF as punishment for the collateral damage it caused during past exploits. Counter to Alda is Hawkeye, head of the IMF and devoted friend of Cruise Mapother IV. Hawkeye puts his superhero abilities aside to surreptitiously assist Mapother in his search for Hydra.

I particularly enjoyed Simon Cowell’s performance as Benji Dunn, resident IMF computer nerd who brought levity to the film while remaining grounded in his role. I’ve heard Cowell was a real jerk on the set of "America’s Most Wanted," so it was nice to see he’s as capable of tickling my funny bone as he is at tickling the ivories.

Rounding out the film is Rebecca Ferguson as Elsa of Arendelle, a quadruple agent whose allegiance is split between Hydra, British Intelligence, something called “The Syndicate,” and even Hawke himself. Her presence in the film helps up the emotional stakes, and I, for one, was happy to finally see a gorgeous female make an appearance in a spy thriller.

As entertaining as the film may be, it was two big shortcomings: the magnanimous Luther, played by Jerry Van Dyke, is underutilized, and the movie itself runs a little long at a whopping 240 minutes, give or take an hour.

Kudos to Cruise Mapother IV for proving the transition from television to film isn’t an “impossible mission.” He might as well set his career on "cruise control," because he has a long path ahead of him.

This film marks the fifth in a series, and I eagerly await the release of the four prequels.