Team effort fires best 'Mission'

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 01 January, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 01 January, 2012, 12:00am


There's no 'I' in team. Yet for most of the Mission: Impossible franchise so far, you'd think there was at least a 'T' or a 'C'. Tom Cruise (who really did scale this building, inset), as Ethan Hunt, has always been top dog of the Impossible Missons Force (IMF). He still is. But in part four of the series, the team finaly get their due credit.

Terrorist Kurt Hendricks (Michael Nyqvist) bombs the Kremlin and steals nuclear codes.

He puts the blame on the IMF; as a result, the US government initiates 'ghost protocol' (hence the title) on Ethan and his team - Jane (Paula Patton), William (Jeremy Renner) and Benji (Simon Pegg). The team are shut down and must act on their own to stop Hendricks from inciting nuclear warfare between the Russians and Americans.

Blockbuster series tend to fizzle after the first instalment. Not Ghost Protocol, though. This is by far the best in the franchise. Forget masks: this one takes it up a notch with invisibility. Forget wires: this one uses magnetic levitation (in one scene, anyway). Other gadgets include magnetic gloves, contact lenses that snap photos, a BMW i8 concept car and more self-destructing devices.

Gadgets aside, Brad Bird, director of The Simpsons, The Incredibles and Ratatouille, moves into live-action without a hitch. Ghost Protocol has a nifty segue into the opening credits; it's clever, creative and a nice nod to the TV series. Promoting computer wiz, Benji, to field duty adds a nice human touch, too.