by Jonathan McKee and Todd Pearage
Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (04/24/2012)
Rated PG-13 for sequences of intense action and violence.
Starring Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg and Paula Patton
Directed by Brad Bird (Ratatouille and The Incredibles)
Jonathan's Rating: Theatre Worthy
Todd's Rating: Worth Buying
This is not just another mission.
The IMF is shut down when it’s implicated in a global terrorist bombing plot. Ghost Protocol is initiated and Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and his rogue new team must go undercover to clear their organization’s name. Disavowed, they will have no resources, no backup and no contact; they are off the grid. You have never seen a mission grittier and more intense than this.
That’s no joke. It really is that intense. This is by far the best of the Mission Impossible films.
TODD’S WORD: I agree. It kept me on the edge of my seat. I saw this one in IMAX and my heart is still racing.
JONATHAN’S WORD: I think a lot of people would agree that by the time a series of films usually makes it to Part IV… the wind is no longer in the sails. We could name countless examples, and few exceptions. But MI4 went against the grain. This film never left you feeling, “Been there, done that.” The premise was new, the characters likable and the action creative.
TODD’S WORD: I agree wholeheartedly.
JONATHAN’S WORD: I liked the first Mission Impossible because it was the first Mission Impossible! It wasn’t great, but it was worth the watch.
MI2 was just dumb. With all respect to director John Woo and his creative over-the-top-action… the movie was literally laughable.
But the franchise took a positive turn with MI3, bringing in director JJ Abrams (the new Star Trek, Super 8…). At the time, it was the best in the series.
But then came MI4. It’s hard to beat Abrams, but Abrams brought in director Brad Bird (The Incredibles, Ratatouille). What can you say? Brad made another amazing film.
TODD’S WORD: I think we need to give some credit to the cast. Tom Cruise is almost 50 years old, and when I saw some of the stuff he did in this movie…WOW. Sure he’s a little crazy, but I have nothing but praise for him.
JONATHAN’S WORD: Yeah. His personal life is a mess, and a lot of people let that influence what they think of his films. If you can look at him without thinking of him jumping on Oprah’s couch, you probably think he’s a great actor.
TODD’S WORD: The rest of the cast is superb. I’m a big fan of Simon Pegg and he brings his perfect comic relief timing to this movie. Jeremy Renner and Paula Patton are great too.
JONATHAN’S WORD: There wasn’t a bad actor in the bunch.
TODD’S WORD: So let’s talk story, what did you think?
JONATHAN’S WORD: The premise was very creative. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but the film takes a pretty unique turn early in the film as Ethan is being delivered his mission. Add a dash of new characters to the storyline and a heaping tablespoon of action… you got yourself a pretty entertaining film.
TODD’S WORD: I agree, I thought it was simple enough to know what was going on and complex enough to keep me guessing.
JONATHAN’S WORD: I agree. That’s where the new Sherlock Holmes lost me a couple times. It was sooooooooo complex that it literally lost me several times. MI4 walks a nice balance.
TODD’S WORD: I loved how we follow Ethan and his team to several very cool locations (the best is Dubai) as they try to stop a terrorist named Hendricks who has an itchy trigger finger for nuclear war. I grew up in the Cold War and it reminded me of all those US vs. USSR films of the 80’s.
JONATHAN’S WORD: That was an interesting twist of originality for 2011.
TODD’S WORD: So the cast is great, the story is great, the director is great…but this is an action movie and the action was AMAZING!! Whether Cruise is running from explosions, sandstorms or bad guys, this film kept my attention throughout the entire film.
If you have seen the trailer you know the team travels to the world’s tallest building…and that scene is flat out spectacular!
JONATHAN’S WORD: It was.
TODD’S WORD: I loved Mission: Impossible 1-3 and I loved this one too…it’s definitely “worth buying.”
JONATHAN’S WORD: Liked 1, hated 2, really liked 3, loved 4. It’s “theatre worthy” for sure.
SHOULD KIDS SEE IT?
There is no sex or nudity, but there are a few scenes where Paula Patton is either changing or wearing somewhat revealing clothes. When it comes to violence, there is a lot of it and it is intense…everything from shooting to hand to hand comeback to explosions. As far as profanity, there is very little.
Three Simple Questions (with Answers You May Be Looking for):
Q: What’s the message/theme of this movie?
A: Jeremy Renner’s character is a former field agent, but something in his past has landed him in the role of analyst. His regret has paralyzed him. Have you ever done anything that has caused regret like that? (Be prepared to share a personal story).
Q: How do you suppose we—as serious Christ-followers—should react to this movie?
A: We need to understand that when we sin it has consequences. And one of those consequences is regret. And depending on what we’ve done, that regret can paralyze us like it did Brandt in the movie.
Read John 8:36, “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”
So how do we get set free?
The answer is in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
At the end of the film when Brandt’s “sin” is revealed, you see his entire persona change. He experiences the freedom he has been longing for.
Q: How can we move from healthy, Bible-based opinions about this movie to actually living out those opinions?
A: The best way for us to live out this principle is to confess our sin and experience forgiveness and freedom. You don’t have to say it out loud, but have you been living with regret? Is there something you need to confess?
Close in prayer, allowing your child/student some silent time to confess their sins.
, president of The Source for Youth
Ministry, is the author of numerous books including the new
Should I Just Smash My Kid's Phone?
, and youth ministry books like
Ministry By Teenagers
Connect: Real Relationships in a
World of Isolation
, and the award winning book
Do They Run When They See You Coming?
speaks and trains
at conferences, churches and events across North
America, all while providing free resources for youth workers and parents on his
. You can follow Jonathan on
, getting a regular dose of youth culture and parenting help.
Jonathan and his wife Lori, and their three teenagers Alec, Alyssa and Ashley live
is a movie buff at heart, but he's not your traditional film critic.
Todd is a blue collar film geek, from his job years ago at Blockbuster to his heartfelt online movie reviews. But
Todd isn't just a film geek. He has worked with middle and high school students since 1991 as a youth pastor in
Baptist, Methodist and Presbyterian Churches. Todd and his wife Lynda are both graduates of Philadelphia Biblical
University and have two children, Brianna and Caleb. Todd loves sports and movies and is always up for a good laugh.
He is a die-hard Pittsburgh Steelers fan, and his favorite movies include Braveheart and Tommy Boy. Todd's reviews
reflect his love for kids and for his family.
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