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60

Mixed or average reviews - based on 16 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 91 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Cruise stars as Ethan Hunt, a secret agent framed for the deaths of his espionage team. Fleeing from government assassins, breaking into the CIA's most impenetrable vault, clinging to the roof of a speeding bullet train, Hunt races like a burning fuse to stay one step ahead of his pursuers... and draw one step closer to discovering the shocking truth. (Paramount) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 16
  2. Negative: 3 out of 16
  1. Reviewed by: Mark Salisbury
    100
    Enormous fun.
  2. Exciting, smart and enormously enjoyable.
  3. 75
    The bottom line on a film like this is, Tom Cruise looks cool and holds our attention while doing neat things that we don't quite understand--doing them so quickly and with so much style that we put our questions on hold, and go with the flow.
  4. 63
    This movie isn't a disaster, but, all things considered, there's little reason to make it a high priority for theatrical viewing.
  5. Some of the suspense set-pieces are impressive, but the picture would pack a greater wallop if it were stitched together more tightly and consistently.
  6. 50
    Whatever the reason for its disappointments, Mission: Impossible is a mission gone awry, prompting you to hope that reruns of its television incarnation will pop up on cable soon.
  7. It's the worst kind of convoluted thriller -- it can never unravel satisfactorily because there's nothing simple at its center, just more confusion.

See all 16 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 21
  2. Negative: 2 out of 21
  1. Dec 31, 2011
    10
    Intriguing, Expertly told and crafted and a great Action performance by Tom Cruise. Also the cinematography is amazing how it suggest paranoia. Also the film is uniquely edited. This is a movie that shows that great direction can really enhance anything! The second best film of 1996 (after Fargo) and while this film was a hit I feel it is slight underrated. Amazing how the film, along with the action scenes don't feel dated at all. Expand
  2. Oct 28, 2011
    10
    This one is a killer! I loved the action and scenario. Even though got some holes in story, it was a less than 2 hours adventure which i will probably never forget. Expand
  3. Feb 9, 2014
    9
    Mission Impossible (the first) is one of the best in the series, and does justice to the old TV show. All of the familiar elements to the show are there, from gadgets to Cruise saying "Mission accomplished!". Expand
  4. May 21, 2011
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The first of the "Mission: Impossible" series, starring Tom Cruise as IMF Agent Ethan Hunt. Brian De Palma (Scarface/The Untouchables) directed as well.

    When a mission in Prague goes wrong and most of his team killed, Impossible Mission Forces Agent Ethan Hunt realizes that he has been set up by a mole within IMF itself, and he must assemble a rogue crew to clear his name and find out who the traitor actually is.

    A very entertaining film, but can be a little confusing if you don't like to think while watching a movie. Plus, a very nice cast including Ving Rhames (awesome as always), Jon Voight, Jean Reno and Henry Czerny.
    Expand
  5. Aug 6, 2012
    7
    A great movie, but such boring drama scenes did not surprise me and Tom Cruise could have done a lot more in this first action adventure movie. Brian De Palma brings a lot of suspense to this one. Expand
  6. Jan 2, 2012
    7
    What you get from Mission: Impossible is spectacle. And that's all you should want from an action thriller. It doesn't offer you too much more in terms of drama or performance, but the plotting is tight, and the storytelling involving (and this is a real achievement considering the film went into production without a finished script). It's just entertainment at the end of the day, and Brian De Palma's stylish direction makes it a very high-end, polished example of entertainment at that. The set-pieces are extremely well handled (particularly the iconic scene where Ethan Hunt hangs from the ceiling of a high-security CIA vault) and Tom Cruise proves he is more than able to handle the stunt work. Cruise was also one of the main driving-forces behind the film's production, and he's clearly aware what audiences want from an action movie. When judging the cast's performances, there's no-one who particularly stands out - Tom Cruise is serviceable, and Jean Reno plays the same character he plays in every film, though Jon Voight has a decent attempt at reading the mediocre dialogue straight-faced, and at least Vanessa Redgrave appears to be having a lot of fun with her role. Yes, the screenplay is nothing special, the character development a bit lacking, and the cutting-edge-for-the-90s technology Ethan Hunt's team uses in their escapades looks laughably dated to a modern audience. Mission: Impossible is good fun to watch, and as long as you don't dwell on the little details, you can get a lot out of this glossy and engaging, yet undeniably silly thriller. Expand
  7. Dec 23, 2012
    3
    The plot is shallow yet hard to follow, there's no action at all and the only good part is very bland and could not be directed any worse. No editing took place at all to capture the intense moment. If the actual "Mission Impossible" part lasted half an hour with solid direction and editing it could have been great. Expand

See all 21 User Reviews