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Mission: Impossible (1996)

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

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(television series), (story) | 3 more credits »
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270 ( 218)
3 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Ethan Hunt
... Jim Phelps
... Claire (as Emmanuelle Beart)
... Kittridge
... Krieger
... Luther
... Sarah Davies (as Kristin Scott-Thomas)
... Max
... Hannah
... Drunken Female IMF Agent
... Drunken Male IMF Agent
... Kittridge Technician
... TV Interviewer
... CIA Analyst William Donloe
... Matthias
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

Every second counts See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

22 May 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mission Impossible  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$80,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$45,436,830, 22 May 1996

Gross USA:

$180,981,856

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$457,696,359
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Oscar-nominated writing team Willard Huyck and Gloria Katz began a script that would pass through the hands of writers David Koepp and Steven Zaillian, before being ultimately refined by Koepp and Robert Towne. Towne kept revising the script all the way through production after Koepp left to direct The Trigger Effect (1996). See more »

Goofs

Trains run on the left track, both in Great Britain and in France. See more »

Quotes

Ethan Hunt: [as he sees the bible on a shelf in the safe house] Job 3:14...
See more »

Crazy Credits

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

Connections

Referenced in Cats & Dogs (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Theme From Mission: Impossible
By Lalo Schifrin
Performed by Larry Mullen Jr. & Adam Clayton
Produced by Larry Mullen Jr. with David Beal
Courtesy of Island Records, Inc.
Contains sample from the original soundtrack recording of "Mission: Impossible Theme"
Conducted by Lalo Schifrin
Courtesy of GNP Crescendo Records and Paramount Pictures
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
call it a guilty pleasure
13 December 2008 | by See all my reviews

Every now and again, you will come upon a film that you know really isn't the best movie in the world, or even a particularly good movie on its own. And yet, despite its glaring flaws and imperfectness and lack of completion, you do find yourself strangely attached to it because it has a charm to itself that keeps you interested. Call it a guilty pleasure.

Mission: Impossible is my guilty pleasure. It's based on a 1960s television series created by Bruce Geller and the movie with Tom Cruise is kind of like a mash-up between The Bourne Identity and the James Bond pictures. Basically, the standard spy movie. Tom Cruise plays a spy who is falsely accused of betrayal to his organization and finds himself working with some unlikely partners to track down the real mole in the system and expose him and clear his name. Now, this is a plot as old as the hills and Mission: Impossible works with it just as well as the others. Not enormously well, but on an acceptable level.

Tom Cruise is great as the film's action hero lead, unfortunately his supporting cast is quite uninteresting. Another defect worth noting is the film's convoluted plot, which sometimes is hard to follow. This is caused by a screenplay in need of revisions. That's one of the film's major weaknesses and really the reason why it's just a standard spy movie with lots of cool gadgets instead of something special.

But that's really my only significant complaint about Mission: Impossible. Those rather small, unimportant defects left aside, and leaving the movie to its own devices, it works out well especially in its action sequences. Again, it's all been done before, sometimes better sometimes worse, but that doesn't meant it's boring or overdrawn. In fact, sometimes it's very primal. There is one scene in particular that I found intense and suspenseful on a hair-raising level. The scene goes on for an unremittingly long time, keeping us on the edges of our seats, and the best thing of all is that it's silent. The filmmakers could have chosen to go along with some dark, heavy music or some ominous heartbeat sound effects to put us in the same shoes with the characters, but the fact that it's quiet—too quiet for our liking—makes it so much more compelling. I only wish the rest of the movie was like this scene. Then it really would have been special.

Nevertheless, De Palma's Mission: Impossible works out well for what it is and unless you're not a fan of the standard spy movies or action pictures in particular, of if you have your standards and hopes up too high, I imagine you will enjoy it. Again, it is kind of a guilty pleasure, but hey, it was a lot of fun.


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