Day 2 of 3 for my 2015 spy movie review-a-thon brings us to the latest Mission Impossible summer blockbuster, this one titled Rogue Nation. It’s the fifth movie in the series, and once again I can only consider myself a casual viewer of the franchise. I’ve seen at least a couple of the other films, but can’t remember too much about what happens in which one. Sometimes I confuse them with The Bourne Identity? At any rate, these films generally seem to be all right.
And as luck would have it, Rogue Nation is all right too. Perhaps even better than the previous Mission Impossible films? This is a straightforward action flick that keeps the plot simple yet engaging. As I mentioned in the Spectre review, the plot has our protagonist Ethan Hunt in a pickle with the government shutting down his task force while he’s in the middle of dealing with THE SYNDICATE which is behind all the terroristy things happening all around the world. It’s a bit corny, but our acting squad seems to jump into their roles with ease, and might even be enjoying themselves.
Overall I really liked the first half of this movie. The opening scene is certainly memorable, featuring Hunt doing a great stunt with an airplane. And then toward the end of the first act, we get a fantastic sequence involving Hunt and two snipers inside an opera house. Each shot was pieced together just right to make the whole thing really suspenseful. Makes you lean in a bit closer, wondering which of the three is going to shoot first. And later on, there’s a pretty interesting underwater sequence (which worked great with the sound in the theater) as well as a solid car/motorcycle chase sequence (complete with some amusing one-liners).
The second half, or perhaps more particularly the last third of the movie, was unfortunately a lot more dull by comparison. It wasn’t bad, but it felt like things were dragging on too much, and the final resolution kind of just… happens. A couple gunfights and fistfights too many perhaps, and then it just ends. I would have liked things to end with a bang, and leave a bit more of an impact in terms of story (or perhaps even some kind of… character arc or theme, or something). I suppose I might just expect more than I should from these sorts of films. But hey, Rogue Nation’s a good one, and I liked it well enough to see it on DVD six months later. If you’re a fan of the spy movie subgenre, be sure to give this a watch. (Or more likely, you’ve already seen it, right?)