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Film review: Mission Impossible Fallout is a jaw-dropping action thriller

PUBLISHED: 11:36 30 July 2018 | UPDATED: 11:36 30 July 2018

Mission: Impossible - Fallout. Pictured: (L-R) Vanessa Kirby as the White Widow, Henry Cavill as August Walker and Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt. Picture: PA PHOTO/PARAMOUNT PICTURES/CHIABELLA JAMES

Mission: Impossible - Fallout. Pictured: (L-R) Vanessa Kirby as the White Widow, Henry Cavill as August Walker and Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt. Picture: PA PHOTO/PARAMOUNT PICTURES/CHIABELLA JAMES

How do you keep a long-running franchise fresh without it ever becoming moribund?

Mission Impossible - Fallout. Pictured: Henry Cavill as August Walker and Angela Bassett as Erica Sloane. Picture: PA PHOTO/ PARAMOUNT PICTURES/CHIABELLA JAMES.Mission Impossible - Fallout. Pictured: Henry Cavill as August Walker and Angela Bassett as Erica Sloane. Picture: PA PHOTO/ PARAMOUNT PICTURES/CHIABELLA JAMES.

It’s a question that has defeated many a film series - The Fast and The Furious (2001-present), Transformers (2007- present) -but one that the Mission Impossible films have cracked, combining heart-stopping set-pieces and genre cinema to produce a consistently exciting action franchise.

With his latest entry, returning director Christopher McQuarrie has delivered a jaw-dropping action thriller.

After a mission goes wrong Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and the rest of the Impossible Mission Force, together with watchful CIA agent August Walker (Henry Cavill), find themselves racing against the clock to protect the world from an impending nuclear threat.

Universally superb as the cast are, especially Cruise and Cavill, it perhaps comes as no surprise that the film is at its most exhilarating in its astonishing action sequences.

From the opening, disastrous Berlin-set mission to a bruising bathroom brawl and the final climactic helicopter chase, the director handles these scenes with aplomb, generating a genuine sense of peril with each new obstacle Hunt is forced to confront.

For all its visual flair and stunning set-pieces, at the film’s core lies a layered, intelligent thriller that packs just as strong an emotional punch as its visceral action.

One niggle is that a key reveal is perhaps a little too heavily signposted from the off. However, this is but a minor flaw in a thrilling, near faultless instalment in the Mission Impossible franchise.

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