Mission: Impossible III
I fell asleep thrice while watching this.
J. J. Abrams didn’t get the memo and thought he was directing a serious film. There’s nary a hint of silliness here, just po-faced serious stunt work with he bare minimum characterization for characters not played by Tom Cruise. Simon Pegg has a small cameo, but that is not space to shine.
While previous films have agents, double agents and triple agents, this adds unnecessary pre-credits teaser spoilers and doesn’t even try to explain what the McGuffin is, just that everyone wants it and the bad guys will use it for bad reasons.
Philip Seymour Hoffman plays the villain, but since his only emotion is unbridled nihilistic cynicism, he puts his most constipated face on, leans back and thinks of England. To add insult to injury, he gets offed towards the end in the most anti-climatic way possible, just a casualty of the need to solve every dangling plot point in a clean, pretty and reliable way. Since the main character is killed and comes back to life, suspense is not in the producers’ vocabulary.
In a nutshell, this feels like a lousy TV episode stretched to two hours with more explosions and without cable drops. Compared to the previous films, this is a complete letdown, and can’t even stand-alone when ignoring the Mission Impossible baggage.