Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to book your Cineworld tickets for Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One. The Tom Cruise-starring, stunt-filled spectacular is poised to become one of the biggest movies of the summer and it capitalises on an escalating successful franchise that many thought to have peaked with the previous movie, Fallout (2018).
Can Dead Reckoning - Part One possibly top the frenzied urgency of its predecessor? While we think about that, and while we already start anticipating the release of Dead Reckoning - Part Two next year, here are the reasons to claim your tickets immediately.
1. It cements Tom Cruise's status as the greatest showman in the movies
Cruise is (in)famous as the A-lister willing to undertake the dangerous tasks that many stunt people avoid. In 2015's Rogue Nation, his character, IMF agent Ethan Hunt, clung to the outside of an airborne plane. Before that, in 2011's Ghost Protocol, he scaled Dubai's Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building, even pausing for a photograph on the pinnacle of the structure.
Put simply, if the insurance agents are getting sweaty palms, then Cruise is doing his job effectively, and that usually translates as a mind-blowing, exhilarating experience for the viewing audience. There's nothing quite like the vicarious thrill of watching an actor putting themselves in danger without the need for directorial tricky or carefully edited close-ups – we the audience perceive that everything is on the line for our entertainment.
This is central to Cruise's philosophy. And nowhere is this more evident than during Dead Reckoning - Part One's motorbike cliff slash base jump set-piece, filmed in Norway. It embodies Cruise's no-holds-barred bravado and also the underlying principle of the ongoing Mission: Impossible movies, namely, that nothing whatsoever is off the table in terms of a thrilling viewing experience.
Naturally, this isn't the only set piece in the movie. With a train plunging off a cliff (preceded by a fight sequence atop said train), and a frenetic car chase through the crowded streets of Rome, Cruise and returning writer-director Christopher McQuarrie are in a continuous race to one-up themselves, both in terms of what's already happened in this movie, and what's happened in the previous films.
Rest assured, if Cruise is hanging on for dear life in the movie, then we're also clinging onto our cinema seats, and that's a joyous thing.
2. It expands the cast with a roster of new and familiar faces
Chalk up the usual suspects: franchise veterans Rebecca Ferguson (Ilsa), Simon Pegg (Benji), Ving Rhames (Luther), Vanessa Kirby (White Widow) and Henry Czerny (appearing for the first time as Eugene Kittridge since the very first Mission: Impossible back in 1996) are all present and correct.
They're joined by series newcomers Hayley Atwell, Esai Morales, Pom Klementieff, Shea Whigham, Cary Elwes, Indira Varma, Rob Delaney, Greg Tarzan Davis, Charles Parnell (who appeared in 2022 Tom Cruise blockbuster Top Gun: Maverick) and Mark Gatiss.
The first three of those names are the most significant. Captain America and Agent Carter star Hayley Atwell portrays Grace, a character described as "ambiguous" in her motives. Esai Morales plays the new villain, Gabriel, who appears to have past form with Cruise's Ethan Hunt if the latest trailer is anything to go by. And Guardians of the Galaxy star Pom Klementieff plays the psychotic assassin Paris, Gabriel's sidekick.
It's quite the ensemble and threatens to rival the Fast & Furious series in terms of the 'family' stakes.
3. The movie boasts the sort of international scope we've come to expect from the franchise
We've already alluded to the film's most famous stunt sequence, captured on camera in the remote mountains of Hellesylt in Norway. The country also features during the pivotal fight sequence between Cruise and Morales – this was captured atop a moving train carriage in the Norwegian district of Preikestolen.
Closer to home in the UK, the North Yorkshire Moors Railway substituted for the Swiss Alps for a sequence involving a train going off a cliff, which has been described as an homage to the classic train/bridge destruction sequence in Buster Keaton's classic silent comedy The General (1926).
The Italian capital Rome also features prominently during a fraught car chase involving Cruise and Atwell. The claustrophobic byways and canals of Venice also play a part during a stand-off between Ferguson and Morales, as Cruise sprints down an alleyway arrestingly lit by a multitude of candles.
Interiors were captured on a various mixture of UK studios including Warner Bros Leavesden and Longcross. Let's not forget that the Mission: Impossible crew managed to bottle the scope and scale of the latest blockbuster while battling with COVID and lockdown restrictions – now there's a seemingly impossible mission that Ethan Hunt has never had to face.
4. It arrives at Cineworld in a multitude of premium viewing formats, including IMAX and 4DX
A new Mission: Impossible movie is your invitation to enhance your Cineworld viewing experience. After all, it's not every year we get a new Mission: Impossible movie, so make the most of it and upgrade to a premium format: choose from IMAX, 4DX, ScreenX, Superscreen or ViP.
So, which will it be? The pin-sharp clarity and breathtaking scope of the IMAX remastering process? The multisensory effects and moving seats of 4DX that lend a visceral punch to the film's action sequences? The state-of-the-art projection and multidimensional sound of Superscreen? The 270-degree wrap-around effect of ScreenX that puts you at the very heart of the movie? Or the ViP experience that's enhanced by our exclusive lounge, complimentary dining, unlimited snacks and drinks and our intimate screening room with luxury recliner seats?
The choice is yours. Just remember to go big as we welcome Ethan Hunt back to cinemas.
5. It's essential viewing for understanding Dead Reckoning - Part Two
Dead Reckoning - Part Two follows on from this year's chapter, so don't be left out in the cold. Settle down and strap in for the first instalment, which will then prime you for the (presumably even bigger) sequel. Dead Reckoning - Part Two boasts even more cast members including British thesp Janet McTeer and Ted Lasso's Hannah Waddingham.
With sequences lensed at the global extremities of the Arctic and South Africa, it's little wonder that filmmaker Christopher McQuarrie is describing the movie as "a monster". He tells Empire Magazine: "South Africa was intense. The aerial sequence is… It’s just outrageous."
Frankly, that's all we need to hear. Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part Two is due for release in June 2024.
The time has come to accept your mission. Click the link below to get your tickets for Dead Reckoning - Part One. It hits Cineworld screens on July 11th.