: : : Mission Impossible 2

Story

Visually stunning, and a likely must for John Woo aficionados, the second Mission: Impossible outing from megastar Tom Cruise suffers from an inconsistent tone and tired plot devices--not only recycled from other films, but repeated throughout the film. Despite remarkable cinematography and awe-inspiring, trademark Woo photography, the movie offers a tepid story from legendary screenwriter-director Robert Towne (Chinatown, Without Limits) and a host of other writers, most uncredited.

It is, regrettably, as forgettable as the first big-budget, big box-office MI in 1996, and it's clear (as Towne confirms) that the plot was developed around Woo- and Cruise-written action sequences. The film combines equal elements of romance and action, and is best when it features the stunning allure of Thandie Newton as Nyah, a master thief recruited by the sinewy charms of Ethan Hunt (a fit Cruise). Deeply in love after a passionate night, the couple must then combat MI nemesis (and Nyah's former lover) Sean Ambrose (Ever After's Dougray Scott). Ambrose holds hostage a virus and its cure, and offers them to the highest bidder.

Woo's famed mythic filmmaking is far from subtle, with heroic Hunt frequently slow-motion walking through fire, smoke, or other similar devices, replete with a white dove among pigeons to signal his presence. The emphasis on romance is an attempt to develop character and a more human side to superspy Hunt, but still the dreary story proves a distraction from the exciting action sequences. John Polson (as an MI team member) is an Aussie talent to keep an eye on. --N.F. Mendoza

DVD Features

  • "Behind the Mission" Exclusive Cast and Crew Interviews
  • "Mission Incredible" Stunts Featurette
  • "Impossible Shots" 11 Amazing Stunt Sequences Including Exclusive Interviews with Tom Cruise, John Woo and Stunt Coordinator Brian Smrz
  • Commentary by John Woo
  • "I Disappear" Metallica Music Video
  • Alternate Title Sequence
  • "Mission Improbable" A M:I-2 Inspired Parody from the MTV Movie Awards
  • English Subtitles
  • Dynamic Interactive Motion Menus
  • Scene Selection

VHS Features

<li type="square">"Mission Incredible": Stunts Featurette
<li type="square">"Impossible Shots": 11 Amazing Stunt Sequences
<li type="square">"Mission Improbable": A M:I-2 Inspired Parody from The MTV Movie Awards

Cast

Tom CruiseEthan Hunt
Dougray ScottSean Ambrose
Thandie NewtonNyah Nordoff-Hall
Ving RhamesLuther Stickell
Richard RoxburghHugh Stamp
John PolsonBilly Baird
Brendan GleesonJohn C. McCloy
Rade SerbedzijaDr. Nekhorvich
William MapotherWallis
Dominic PurcellUlrich
Mathew WilkinsonMichael
Patrick MarberTrain Driver
Anthony HopkinsMission Commander Swanbeck

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