To date, “Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One” has become the best-reviewed movie ever seen in the franchise’s history on the popular review-aggregation website, Rotten Tomatoes. The movie, which marks the first of the two-parter “Dead Reckoning” with the follow-up currently slated for a 2024 release, again sees Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and his team on a mission to save the world. With the movie currently playing in cinemas nationwide, here are the five reasons why you should watch this must-see action blockbuster of “Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One”.
1) Spectacular Action Set Pieces
The “Mission: Impossible” franchise is renowned for shooting its action scenes as practical as possible. “Dead Reckoning Part One” is no different, showcasing some of the best action set pieces ever made in the series. This includes the high-speed car chase through the streets of Rome, in which at one point, we see both handcuffed Tom Cruise and Hayley Atwell careening their yellow Fiat 500 down Rome’s Spanish Steps.
The movie also featured one of Tom Cruise’s most jaw-dropping stunts ever committed — a daring motorcycle cliff jump that saw the actor drive the custom-made Honda CRF 250 off the edge of Norway’s Helsetkopen mountain. The scene itself reportedly had the actor perform the motorcycle stunt a whopping 13,000 times (!) during the pre-production stage. Trust us when we said this: the motorcycle cliff jump looks incredible on IMAX.
2) Two Words: TOM CRUISE
We could argue that star powers are no longer what they used to be. But Tom Cruise is a name that still matters even in today’s ever-changing movie landscape. He may have his fair share of flops but after the colossal misfire of “The Mummy” reboot in 2017, Cruise has enjoyed a continuous hot streak ever since. This includes “American Made”, “Mission: Impossible – Fallout” and last year’s “Top Gun: Maverick”. The latter, of course, marked Cruise’s biggest hit to date at nearly USD1.5 billion worldwide.
As usual, Cruise’s return as Ethan Hunt in “Dead Reckoning Part One” remains one of the franchise’s major contributing factors. His commitment to practical stunts even at the age of 61 years old continues his longevity as one of the last true Hollywood movie stars.
3) Cruise’s Chemistry With Hayley Atwell
The “Mission: Impossible” franchise is no stranger to pairing Cruise with different female co-stars. This can be seen from Emmanuelle Béart in the first movie to Rebecca Ferguson in “Rogue Nation” and “Fallout”. “Dead Reckoning Part One” continues the tradition by introducing Hayley Atwell of “Agent Carter” fame as mysterious pickpocket Grace. They hit it off the moment Cruise’s Ethan Hunt and Atwell’s Grace cross paths at the airport, leading to one of the best on-screen pairings ever seen in the 27-year-old franchise’s history.
4) Timely Storyline
“Dead Reckoning Part One” still sees Cruise’s Ethan Hunt and his IMF team fighting against the terrorist. The terrorist in question revolved around Gabriel (Esai Morales), who also turns out to be Hunt’s past before he joins IMF. But the story also features a major antagonist, unlike anything this series has ever done since 1996. And the antagonist happens to be something unexpectedly topical: A.I. Keep in mind the movie was shot around 3-4 years ago and at the time of its production, no one could have predicted A.I. becomes one of the most talked-about subjects in today’s era (e.g. the rise of ChatGPT and deepfake technology).
In the case of “Dead Reckoning Part One”, the story includes the all-knowing A.I. called “the Entity”, which becomes sentient with its capability of infiltrating any digital system. The concept of A.I. that is integrated into the story gives the movie an added edge in exploring the danger of tech-related paranoia. Not to mention the prescient A.I. topic meshes well with the franchise’s old-school espionage storytelling.
5) The Climactic Train Sequence
“Dead Reckoning Part One” sees returning director Christopher McQuarrie pays homage to Brian De Palma’s 1996 first movie. But instead of the high-speed TGV bullet train, we get to see Ethan Hunt fighting against Gabriel on top of the moving steam-engine Orient Express. The movie is also notable for its thrillingly staged train crash, complete with suspenseful moments of Hunt and Grace trying to jump from one falling railroad car to another.