Mission: Impossible – Fallout 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review
Why can’t all action stars do their own stunts? I kid of course. But Tom Cruise stands alone as the most impressive action star with his ability to do stunts and act at the same time. MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE FALLOUT is another amazing showcase of thrilling action, incredible stunts, and terrific fun.
As the sixth film in the Mission: Impossible franchise and true sequel piece to MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE ROGUE NATION, FALLOUT brings back a few of Ethan Hunt’s (and our) favorite IMF team members (Simon Pegg, Ving Rhames, and even Alec Baldwin). After a hair-raising, mission gone wrong opening sequence, the stage is set – the team must track and recover three bowling ball looking nuclear weapons that could easily wipe out large portions of the population. Joining the fight in some way or another are some familiar faces (Rebecca Ferguson) and some new faces (Henry Cavill). Obviously, it’s a race against time with most of the mission never going quite as planned. This mission just got a whole lot more impossibler. Cue music.
The Mission: Impossible franchise might tackle the ticking clock scenario better than any other. What I mean by that is that it sets up a plot device that puts a time limit on the characters, creating constrained tension the team works to resolve the conflict. If done well, it can put the audience in a state of stress as they hold their breath through each passing moment, only to exhale in relief once the problem is solved. I’m sure I did to some degree through all the films, but can think of specific incidences in both the first MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE and MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE GHOST PROTOCOL where I actively was squirming in my seat. MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE – FALLOUT proves once again that this franchise is far from dead as it made this viewer very much aware that I am alive with my heart nearly beating out of my chest.
Director Christopher McQuarrie is able to keep continuous shots locked in on Cruise as he runs, jumps, leaps, fights, flies, and hangs on for dear life as he is surely inches from death (or at least a severe injuries at all times). On top of clearly doing his own ill-advised stunts, Cruise is fully aware of the camera at all times. He looks down and looks up catching each camera, to verify it is in fact him, while simultaneously concentrating on every difficult movement. The visuals in FALLOUT are amazing and that is partly due to Cruise’s ability to be in every harrowing scene, allowing the filmmaker to not have to worry about tricking the viewer.
Regardless what you might think of Cruise’s personal beliefs, I still don’t think the A-lister gets enough credit as an actor and action star. MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE – FALLOUT is another fun success because of Cruise and the humorous way his character will throw himself into any situation hoping he will “figure it out later.” It also doesn’t hurt that the likable hero is a team player that always chooses to save a life over finishing a mission.
Despite the non-stop action, at two hours and twenty seven minutes, FALLOUT runs a touch long. Likewise, there is an emotional beat or two that is drawn out more than necessary. However, the only place you might feel these moments are in the bladder as MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE – FALLOUT is easily the best action movie of the year.
4K ULTRA HD BLU-RAY REVIEW
Video: If you caught MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE – FALLOUT in theaters, you might have noticed the aspect ratio shift during key scenes. Thankfully, that’s preserved here on the 4K. As for the actual visual presentation, I found it to be very impressive, especially in those key IMAX scenes. Colors are more defined and details are more noticeable across the board. There are some beautiful, sweeping shots sprinkled throughout the film and they come through wonderfully on 4K.
Audio: Not to be outdone by the nice video transfer, the included Dolby Atmos track is even more impressive. I love the scope-change for the IMAX scenes and with the great audio, you really do feel like you’re a part of the action.
This title was reviewed using a Samsung UBD-K8500 with a Sony XBR75X850C TV.
There are no 4K exclusive special features, but it does include a Blu-ray of the film, which has the following special features:
Commentary with Christopher McQuarrie and Tom Cruise: I could listen to these guys talk about their films all day. It’s clear both of them love the movie and have a blast working together. Cruise talks in depth about doing the stunts and McQuarrie talks about various directing decisions. Overall, this is a great commentary track.
Commentary with Christopher McQuarrie and Eddie Hamilton: Having the editor on the track with McQuarrie gives us a more technical commentary than the one with Cruise. This track is more geared towards the reasoning behind some of the shots and the choices in how they put everything together.
Commentary with Lorne Balfe: The problem with having composers do commentary is that in order to understand what they’re talking about, you have to listen to the music, which means they can’t talk. So Lorne does a decent job, but there are a lot of long pauses.
Behind the Fallout (53:30): This is a seven part featurette that mainly covers the making of specific scenes. There’s one featurette dedicated to a deleted scene that shows most of the scene (the full scene can be found in the deleted scenes) and then breaks it down and discusses it. I would argue that every action scene in Fallout is fascinating and it’s great to get the details behind the scenes.
Deleted Scenes Montage (3:40): If you watch the trailer for Fallout, you’ll notice several moments that never made it into the final film. Most of them can be found here.
Foot Chase Musical Breakdown (4:50): The composer comes back to break down a specific musical sequence.
The Ultimate Mission (2:50): Cruise talks about this film and the franchise.
Storyboards and the trailer