There's nothing like a two-hour epic showcasing Tom Cruise's vain acting attempts to make a swig of strychnine and a couple of cyanide tablets sound appetizing.
Actually -- and Mr. Cranky has never said anything like this before -- "Mission: Impossible" had the potential early on to be one of the greatest films ever made. Why, you ask? Well, there's an IMF team consisting of Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise), Claire Phelps (Emmaneulle Beart), Sarah (Kristin Scott-Thomas), the crafty electronics guy (Emilio Estevez) and the older, wiser, "I'll work from the computer while the rest of you get shot at" Jim Phelps (Jon Voight). They're assigned to prevent a spy from making off with a "NOC list" which matches the names of covert operatives around the world with their aliases.
However, something quickly goes wrong and within the first five minutes Emilio Estevez is dead. At this point, I'm thinking to myself, "This could be the greatest movie ever made. They killed off Emilio Estevez in the first five minutes." I mean, how many disastrous films has this guy starred in? You gotta give someone involved in this film credit for thinking, "Okay, we'll let this Estevez guy in the film for a while, but we've got to kill his character off quick or our box-office is in the toilet."
So six minutes into the film, I'm thinking that if Tom Cruise is run over by a truck or something, this will be the greatest movie ever made. Then a friend informed me that Tom Cruise, in addition to being the star of the film, was also its producer. So I asked my friend if he thought that Tom Cruise would both star himself in a film and kill himself off in the first ten minutes. My friend said he didn't think so. From that point on I was pretty depressed.
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