Friday, March 01, 2024

Best of 2023, #6: Mission: Impossible: Dead Reckoning, Part One

Yes, it’s too long, especially considering it’s only “Part One”, but this is a tremendously fun movie. Certainly, this movie ends much more satisfactorily than this year’s Spider-Verse movie. That movie just abruptly halts in the middle of everything, but this movie comes to a very satisfying climax. The promise that there will be more to come feels like a reward, not a threat.

This was the only movie this year I was in a hurry to watch again. I asked for the Blu-Ray for Christmas and then happily hopped on the elliptical runner to exercise to it over the course of five great work-outs. That was so much fun, I then did five more workouts while watching the director’s commentary! A movie has to be pretty thrilling to get a good workout out of the commentary.

Fans of the “Marvel Reread Club” podcast know how much I love to see fighting on top of trains, and this movie has one of the greatest train fights of all time, all the more thrilling knowing that Tom Cruise keeps it real. The movie is too long, but I couldn’t complain when the climax founds ways to keep topping and topping and topping itself. I’ve talked before about how modern action movies sometimes leave you “exhausted, not exhilarated”, but this movie, which is ten pounds of fun in a five pound bag, manages to do both.

I’m so happy there’s another one coming, though it was pushed back a year by the strikes. Unfortunately, this movie, crushed by Barbenheimer, was a commercial disappointment, but I hope they don’t change anything in response. It’s my understanding that it was mostly in the can, and it would be disastrous to start second-guessing themselves now.

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