M:I-2 is on the TV as I type this, and the 15 year gap is finally showing Tom Cruise is an almost normal, ageing mortal. The stunts he pulls off in the franchise’s fifth installment – subtitled Rogue Nation – shows that while he may be losing that youthful glow he’s making up for it by ramping up the physicality.
And yet, Rogue Nation continues the series’ move away from The Tom Cruise show, with a solid team continuing the story on from 2011’s Ghost Protocol: Simon Pegg, Ving Rhames, and Jeremy Renner. The series has played back and forth with the TV show’s sense of teamwork, but it definitely feels strong here – I likes!
All of the group’s skills are needed in the maniac clash with shadowy group, The Syndicate. The plot is twisty and full of tricks, with more action than you can shake a stick at. The trailer shows the big stunt – Cruise on an airplane (no, *on* the plane – the outside!) – designed to best the highrise scaling of the previous installment. And, of course, Cruise on a bike…! The difference, maybe, is the star’s willingness to show difficulties and human frailties – again, a change I like.
Something else I really like is the new, female character. Played by the lovely Rebecca Ferguson, this is possibly the best Hollywood portrayal of a woman in quite a while: she’s got her own agenda, she’s kick-ass, and she’s absolutely not ‘the love interest’. Phew!
All in all, the almost 20-year series is going from strength to strength as far as I’m concerned. Rogue Nation was fast, fun, and as action-packed as I could wish for.
Released: 30th July 2015
Running time: 131 minutes
Rated: 12A, although the kid next to me was pretty bored and there’s rather a lot of violence
My rating: 7/10