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Mission: Impossible (1996)

PG-13  |   |  Action, Adventure, Thriller  |  22 May 1996 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 276,289 users   Metascore: 59/100
Reviews: 369 user | 148 critic | 29 from

An American agent, under false suspicion of disloyalty, must discover and expose the real spy without the help of his organization.



(television series), (story), 3 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Claire Phelps (as Emmanuelle Beart)
Sarah Davies (as Kristin Scott-Thomas)
Valentina Yakunina ...
Nathan Osgood ...
John McLaughlin ...
Karel Dobrý ...


Based on the hit T.V. series. Jim Phelps was sent to Prague for a mission to prevent the theft of classified material. His wife Claire and his trusted partner Ethan Hunt were members of Phelps' team. Unfortunately, something went horribly wrong and the mission failed, leaving Ethan Hunt the lone survivor. After he reported the failed mission, Kettridge the head of the agency suspects Ethan of being the culprit for the failed mission. Now, Ethan uses unorthodox methods (Which includes the aid of an arms dealer going by the name "Max") to try to find who set him up and to clear his name. Written by John Wiggins

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Expect the Impossible

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some intense action violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





| |

Release Date:

22 May 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mission Impossible  »

Box Office


$80,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£11,040,340 (UK) (19 July 1996)


$180,965,237 (USA) (22 November 1996)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Jim Phelps' cigarette lighter is a Dunhill Rollagas. This lighter is seen in several of the James Bond films. See more »


The TGV is an electric train which draws its power from overhead wires. Yet, in the outside shots of the TGV, you see no overhead wires or pantographs. See more »


Franz Krieger: If we're going to Virginia why don't we drop by Fort Knox? I could fly a helicopter through the lobby and set it down right inside the vault. And it would be a hell of a lot easier than breaking into the goddamn CIA.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits contain several plot points from the movie. See more »


Referenced in Fringe: Over There: Part 1 (2010) See more »


By Dolores O'Riordan & Noel Hogan
Performed by The Cranberries
Courtesy of Island Records, Ltd.
By Arrangement with Polygram Film & TV Licensing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Soak up Cruise's Charisma
22 May 2006 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Yes, there was a time when Tom Cruise was charismatic. Take trashy movies such as Cocktail and Far and Away or great movies like The Firm and A Few Good Men and imagine anyone other than Tom Cruise in the lead role. Hard to do, isn't it? His brash, cocky attitude was once appealing. Now that he feels he's an intelligent spokesman with something to say, he just comes across as an arrogant a**hole. Fortunately, the first MI falls into his earlier stage.

This movie would have been just another action flick without Cruise. Sure we have a stellar cast, but did not Mr. Cruise steal every scene? He is perfect in the role of Ethan Hunt, a spy whose whole team is rubbed out in a convoluted cover up at the start. It is up to Ethan to uncover the plot behind the failed mission. The movie is a series of unveiled plot twists that becomes implausible after a while. But that's not the fun behind Mission Impossible. The fun is watching the great action scenes with their suspenseful turns. So much so, we are willing to suspend disbelief to enjoy the ride. And to let ourselves be swept away by Mr. Cruise's undefinable quality to take us there.

16 of 20 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Terrible acting and story-telling gerhajdu
Still the best MI movie of the series harryster
Snore Fest Born_ToKill
How smoking was Max in this movie? Neelchim_Edsue
Tell My Why This Movie Is Bad tylrmcgill
Danny Elfman score heisenberg83
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