Mission : Impossible 2
The sequel to the spy thriller that took it in an extremely stylized action direction.
Expect The Impossible Again
A trusted operative of a top-secret government organization is tasked with retrieving a deadly synthetic virus from a rogue operative of the same organization. In order to successfully accomplish his mission he must recruit the former lover of the operative to infiltrate his team, but during the course of the mission he falls for her and must decide if her life is worth the potential death of millions.
Ethan Hunt is the top agent of the Impossible Missions Force and is given the assignment of tracking down a man-made virus in the hands of a rogue agent planning on releasing it for profit. Luther Stickell is the once disavowed IMF agent who is an expert computer hacker and Ethan’s friend with an array of government supplied gadgets to keep track on the mole of the rogue agent’s team. Nyah Nordoff-Hall is a professional thief operating out of Seville, Spain who is the former lover of the rogue agent and assigned by Ethan to spy on him. Sean Ambrose is a former IMF agent who has gone rogue with the virus Chimera and its cure Bellerophon with the plan to release the virus in Sydeny, Australia to profit from the cure.
Mission: Impossible 2 is the most operatic action movie of the spy genre with a driving soundtrack that screams extreme. M:I 2 is the most fun of the series as we find an Ethan Hunt that is confident of his place within the IMF and trusting in his ability to complete a mission, but not expecting his feelings to get in the way of his ego & reputation within the espionage community. Thandie Newton gives a minimalist performance that focuses her character's inner turmoil through body language rather than dialogue and Dougray Scott gives us a villain that has studied the hero so much that he is practically a fanatic trying to quell his own sycophantic jealousy. John Woo is able to give us his most unrestrained directing effort that makes every scene a marriage of sight and sound with this cinematic masterwork of triumphant grace under pressure against the action of simmering surprise. Robert Towne gets solo writing credit this time around with this straight to the point spy thriller that brings to mind the best of the Roger Moore era of the James Bond franchise. Hans Zimmer is back to give us an cool score with experimental touches, but it is eclipsed by the film’s soundtrack which includes Limp Bizkit’s excellent “Take A Look Around” and Metallica’s “I Disappear” among other contemporary tracks. This is easily one of my favorites of the franchise as I see it as an awesome deconstruction of the genre at that time like Scream was for horror movies with a style that set it apart from anything else in the Summer of 2000. Looking back on the motion picture now brings to mind films like Alfred Hitcock’s Notorious, John Woo’s own Face-Off and Mike Newell’s Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. I rate this a rating of 4 & 1/2 out of 5.