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PARAMOUNT

MOVIE INFO

Director:
Brad Bird
Cast:
Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Ving Rhames, Paula Patton, Simon Pegg, Michael Nyqvist
Writing Credits:
Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec

Synopsis:
The IMF is shut down when it's implicated in the bombing of the Kremlin, causing Ethan Hunt and his new team to go rogue to clear their organization's name.

Box Office:
Budget
$145 million.
Opening Weekend
$29,556,629 on 3,448 Screens.
Domestic Gross
$209,397,903.

MPAA:
Rated PG-13

DISC DETAILS
Presentation:
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Audio:
English Dolby TrueHD 7.1
French Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1
English Audio Description
Subtitles:
English
Spanish
French
Portuguese
Closed-captioned
Supplements Subtitles:
English
Spanish
French
Portuguese

Runtime: 132 min.
Price: $21.99
Release Date: 4/17/2012

Bonus:
• “Mission Accepted” Featurette
• “Impossible Missions” Featurette
• Deleted Scenes
• Trailers and Previews
• DVD Copy


PURCHASE @ AMAZON.COM

EQUIPMENT
Panasonic TC-P60VT60 60-Inch 1080p 600Hz 3D Smart Plasma HDTV; Sony STR-DG1200 7.1 Channel Receiver; Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player using HDMI outputs; Michael Green Revolution Cinema 6i Speakers (all five); Kenwood 1050SW 150-watt Subwoofer.

RELATED REVIEWS


Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol [Blu-Ray] (2011)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (September 23, 2015)

No one can call 2006’s Mission: Impossible 3 a flop, but it certainly fell below financial expectations. At the time, I attributed this to star Tom Cruise’s extracurricular activities, as around 2005 or so, he started to act in nuttier ways, and these seemed to impact his public perception and popularity.

Apparently moviegoers forgave Cruise by 2011, as that year’s fourth Mission: Impossible effort became a big hit. IMF Agent Ethan Hunt (Cruise) gets the assignment to infiltrate the Kremlin to learn the true identity of “Cobalt” (Michael Nygvist), a former Russian nuclear strategist turned terrorist. This goes awry: not only does Hunt fail to obtain the needed information, but also the Kremlin ends up destroyed.

Hunt and his team take the blame for this event, and US authorities dissolve the IMF. Hunt goes rogue to clear his name and fix the situation.

When I saw Protocol theatrically back in 2011, I went into it with pretty high expectations. After all, I thought MI3 was the best of the series to that point, and I also felt buoyed by the consistently strong reviews the fourth film received.

I have to admit Protocol did little for me at that time. I can’t even recall what left me disenchanted, but I know that I thought it was a letdown after MI3 and not an especially memorable action experience.

Four years later, I hoped a second viewing would change my mind, especially since I liked 2015’s Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation quite a lot. Perhaps I’d misjudged Protocol back in 2011 and would now be able to appreciate its pleasures.

Or perhaps not. After two viewings, I still don’t find myself invested in Protocol, but I can’t quite explain why. On the surface, the film boasts all the excitement, action and intrigue one would want from the tale such as this. It comes with fine talent involved and excellent production values.

So why do I remain moderately disenchanted with Protocol? I think part of the problem stems from its decidedly lackluster villain. Granted, the M:I franchise hasn’t boasted a lot of fine baddies – really, outside of the third film’s Philip Seymour Hoffman character, the others have seemed fairly forgettable.

I think the lack of a charismatic protagonist does more to hurt Protocol, though. While I don’t expect the series to offer Bond-level villains, I’d like someone more engaging and memorable than the enormously forgettable “Cobalt”.

The film also suffers due to a general sense of weightlessness. For a movie about the possible end of the world, Protocol comes oddly devoid of tension. One could argue this occurs because we know the good guys will win the day, but that shouldn’t be an issue. There are zillions of predictable movies that still give us plenty of anxious moments.

Protocol never becomes one of them. It glides through its story without much feeling of drama or commitment, so we never fully invest in events or characters. The action shows all the right elements but it doesn't coalesce into anything more than surface fun.

I do think Protocol heats up as it goes, so at least it finishes on a high note. Nonetheless, those moments seem like they’re too little, too late. Ghost Protocol gives us occasionally excitement but it doesn’t deliver the real thrills I’d like.


The Blu-ray Grades: Picture A-/ Audio A/ Bonus C+

Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. As expected, the Blu-ray delivered excellent visuals.

Sharpness seemed terrific. At no point did I discern any softness, as the movie remained accurate and concise. Jagged edges and shimmering failed to mar the image, and I also saw no signs of edge haloes. Print flaws stayed away from this clean presentation.

Colors depended somewhat on setting. Much of the movie emphasized a strong teal orientation, but we got more of a sandy/orange hue during the Dubai sequences. These choices left me cold but the Blu-ray rendered them appropriately. Blacks seemed deep and tight, while shadows looked smooth and detailed. Everything here excelled.

Even better, the movie’s Dolby TrueHD 7.l soundtrack provided a stimulating experience. With all its action sequences, the film boasted tons of chances for lively audio, and the mix took advantage of them. Gunfire, explosions and vehicles swarmed around us when appropriate, and the elements combined to form a smooth, seamless soundscape.

The auditory showstopper probably came from a scene with a massive sandstorm. As demonstrated by movies like Into the Storm, Mother Nature provides some of the best opportunities for engulfing audio, and this sequence fared really well. Even without it, though, this became a vivid, involving track.

Audio quality also satisfied. Speech showed good accuracy and distinctiveness, while music was peppy and full. Effects appeared rich and dynamic, with tight highs and full lows. I anticipated a fine soundtrack and this one easily lived up to expectations

The disc’s extras start with featurette called Mission Accepted. In this 29-minute, 38-second piece, we hear from producers JJ Abrams and Bryan Burk, executive producer Jeffrey Chernov, director Brad Bird, stunt rigger/stunt double Randy Hall, stunt coordinator Greg Smrz, stuntman David Schulz, producer/actor Tom Cruise, unit production manager/co-producer Tommy Harper, associate producer Ben Rosenblatt, special effects supervisor Mike Meinardus, editor Paul Hirsch, additional 2nd unit director Jeffrey A. Lynch, and actors Paula Patton, Jeremy Renner and Michael Nyqvist.

We learn about sets/locations, stunts, effects, and general elements of the production. “Accepted” acts more as production diary than true “making of”, especially because it spends most of its running time with a focus on the shoot in Dubai. Despite this limited range, “Accepted” offers quality information and becomes an engaging look behind the scenes.

Next comes the six-minute, 13-second Impossible Missions. It features property master Kristopher E. Peck. This domain looks at the shooting of the sandstorm sequence as well as some movie props.

The sandstorm sequence isn’t especially valuable, mainly because it shows lots of movie footage and not much behind the scenes material. The props info works better but remains too superficial to succeed, especially because the segment ends so abruptly it feels like part of the featurette is missing.

Three Deleted Scenes fill a total of five minutes, 12 seconds. We see “Alternate Opening: Hendricks Practices His Speech” (1:48), “Confusion In the Van” (2:10) and “Benji Almost Caught In the Kremlin” (1:14). The “Opening” gives us an earlier intro to the movie’s main villain, one that doesn’t work. “Confusion” offers an attempt to use the filmmakers’ lack of certainty to the characters’ benefit; it’s vaguely interesting but no better. Finally, “Caught” adds a little tension but doesn’t bring much else.

We can view these scenes with or without commentary from director Brad Bird. He tells us about the sequences and why he cut them. Bird offers useful thoughts. It’s too bad he didn’t do a full commentary for the movie itself.

A second disc provides a DVD copy of Protocol. It includes none of the Blu-ray’s extras.

After a strong third film, I hoped the fourth Mission: Impossible release would work even better. However, Ghost Protocol doesn’t quite gel, as it provides a competent but not especially enthralling work. The Blu-ray offers excellent picture and audio along with a few decent supplements. Ghost Protocol has its moments but doesn’t fly as high as I’d like.

Viewer Film Ratings: 3.6666 Stars Number of Votes: 9
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