The heroics are magnified against the backdrop of villainy. The grimmer, the darker, the evil the villain is, the more we root for the hero. We get off the seat and whistle, go along with the ride, applaud at every punch. We treat the victory as our own. The good against the bad, the virtue against the evil. The bigger and the meaner the adversary is, the greater is the joy for the viewer when he is beaten. All and sundry metamorphose into the hero, feeling the joy of scaling the heights themselves. Otherwise, all the acts of grandeur, difficult in themselves, feel like mere orchestrated acts enacted for passive armchair adventurous.
Mission Impossible series from the beginning had a very strong antagonist. Who can forget the Job and Max of the first one. The sweat drop falling in the controlled room, the last scene where the helicopter’s blade stops millimeters from Hunts face, all these were credible because the face of villain was not that of a weakling. It felt formidable even within the confines of the theater.
MI 3 was the best for me. It had enough of emotion, drama, suspense and action. Davian and Rabbit’s Foot seemed real and threatening. We waited with bated breath because we believed in the power of the villain to wreck havoc. The hero as every true one, would gallop on the horse or the plane and in the last minute, save the entire world and universe, and we would all heave a collected sigh of relief and get enough adrenaline flowing to face the mundane, boring real life till the next installment of the improbable impossible delivers.
Well, let us leave the previous ones and come to the latest installment, the rogue nation. The firing of truth serum to all and sundry, the prime minister, the MI6 head (Atlee) and the conversation that follows, bordered on comical flair. Lane the villain, was weak and did not espouse the hatred or the awe that a villain should. I am not for even a second commenting on the acting capabilities. It is that the persona of the villain did not justify the larger than life “Hunt”. As a result, we liked the stunts, but then they were only technically brilliant. The getting into the plane, the submerging into the cooling towers holding the breath, were all good, we liked them, but they did not evoke the same “primordial fighting spirits of anger, hate and elation”. Not even for a second does Ethan Hunt aka Tom Cruise let us down, let us be clear on that. But then …
We did enjoy the movie. There was not a dull moment. All the actors played their parts very well. Worth watching. For the next installment, please give us a meaner Villain.