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Review: ‘Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning Part One’ starring Tom Cruise

“Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning Part One,” starring Tom Cruise, is a riveting action adventure.

Tom Cruise in 'Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning, Part One'
Tom Cruise in 'Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning, Part One.' Photo Courtesy of Paramount Pictures and Skydance
Tom Cruise in 'Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning, Part One.' Photo Courtesy of Paramount Pictures and Skydance

“Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning Part One,” starring Tom Cruise, is a riveting action adventure.

It will officially be released in theaters on July 12, 2023, via Paramount Pictures.

Aside from Cruise, the all-star cast includes Hayley Atwell, Ving Rhames, Simon Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson, Vanessa Kirby, Esai Morales, Pom Klementieff, Mariela Garriga, Henry Czerny, Shea Whigham, Greg Tarzan Davis, Charles Parnell, Frederick Schmidt, and Cary Elwes, among others. This sequel is based on the TV series that was created by Bruce Geller.

Tom Cruise leads a gifted cast that ensures every character feels sincere and well-rounded.

In this new installment, which was expertly directed by Christopher McQuarrie, Tom Cruise is back as Ethan Hunt, where he and his IMF team embark on their most dangerous mission yet. That mission is to track down a terrifying new weapon that threatens all of humanity before it falls into the wrong hands.

With control of the future and the fate of the world at stake, and dark forces from Ethan’s past closing in, a deadly race around the globe begins. Confronted by a mysterious, all-powerful enemy, Ethan is forced to consider that nothing can matter more than his mission – not even the lives of those he cares about most.

Hayley Atwell delivers as Ethan Hunt’s leading lady Grace, and their complicated rapport, which at times could be warm or distant, allows for more resonance. The same holds true with Swedish actress Rebecca Ferguson in her role as Ilsa Faust, where despite her limited screentime, she is able to make a lasting impression on the viewer thanks to her well-choreographed fight scenes.

Academy Award nominee Vanessa Kirby (“Pieces of a Woman”) also stars as Alanna Mitsopolis, an underground arms dealer, who is affectionately known as the “White Widow.” French actress Pom Klementieff portrays Paris, a femme fatale assassin that is tasked to chase Ethan.

Esai Morales is able to pull off the crowning acting performance of his career as the nefarious Gabriel, the powerful terrorist and Ethan’s biggest adversary, and he does so in a raw and controlled fashion. Morales’ choices play deftly with and against Cruise’s as Hunt’s, thus creating an eerie dynamic that enhances the film and creates a showcase of Morales’ wide range as an actor.

The screenplay by Christopher McQuarrie and Erik Jendresen fulfills the action movie ensemble cardinal rule. Each actor in the cast is given their own unique characterization, and it is neat to watch the character development unfold as the film progresses.

Tom Cruise and Rebecca Ferguson
Tom Cruise and Rebecca Ferguson in ‘Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning, Part One.’ Photo Courtesy of Paramount Pictures and Skydance.

Venice, Rome, and all of the countries where the film was shot serve as beautiful backdrops for the story, presented with such deep characterization, as if the locations were characters in and of themselves.

It is filled with multiple twists and turns, which will keep the audience at the edge of their seats, making good on the franchise’s continued promise to keep getting better, and more thrilling, with each release.

The stunt-work by Tom Cruise, indeed all the stunts (and stunt performers) in the film are quite exhilarating, especially the ones that involve Cruise speed-flying, which looked terrifying to watch. The movie has elements of the James Bond spy thriller “Quantum of Solace” meets “Titanic” (especially towards the end, without giving too much away).

The Verdict

“Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning Part One” is a vivacious and engaging action adventure. Tom Cruise proves once again that he is a master action superstar, and that he only gets better with age and experience. Cruise is not afraid to take risks in an effort to push the envelope in a bold and unapologetic manner.

Just when one thought Cruise couldn’t outdo himself after “Top Gun: Maverick” last summer, it is safe to say that this latest installment of the “Mission: Impossible” franchise is equally compelling and memorable. The audience ought to buckle up because this is one high-adrenaline ride.

There is an authenticity to this film like no other. This is the kind of movie viewers will want to rewatch down the road, especially to look for clues that they might have missed the first time around, which were so apparent that they might have been there all along. At the same time, it will also make fans anxiously await for “Part Two.”

Markos Papadatos
Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 21,000 original articles over the past 18 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a 16-time "Best of Long Island" winner, where for three consecutive years (2020, 2021, and 2022), he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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