Mission: Impossible III (2006)

Genres - Action, Spy Film  |   Sub-Genres - Action Thriller, Glamorized Spy Film  |   Release Date - May 5, 2006 (USA)  |   Run Time - 126 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - PG13
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There is a thin line between a big dumb action film and a big ridiculous action film. The first assumes the audience will turn out no matter what the filmmakers do, while the second is made by people who enjoy the outrageous over-the-top stunts just as much as the audience. Mission: Impossible III is a big ridiculous action film. The action sequences for the most part do not inspire awe with breathtaking effects, but they do provide giggles because of how the complications pile up -- the big set pieces are well-written. The gadgetry and the pacing will remind viewers of the best of the Bond films, and the supporting cast often provides welcome surprises. Philip Seymour Hoffman is riveting as the bad guy, and fans of the actor will enjoy the moment when he gets to play Tom Cruise playing his character -- a sentence that will make more sense to those familiar with the Mission: Impossible series. First-time feature director J.J. Abrams strikes a fine balance between character and action, allowing supporting players to register without ever letting it feel like anyone other than Tom Cruise is the center of the film. That may be a stumbling block for those who have grown tired of Cruise, but anyone else should feel satisfied with this solid, enjoyable effort.