Mission: Impossible III (2006, USA) C-126m. SCOPE ** D: J.J. Abrams. Starring Tom Cruise, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ving Rhames, Billy Crudup, Michelle Monaghan, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Keri Russell, Maggie Q, Simon Pegg, Eddie Marsan, Laurence Fishburne, Sasha Alexander. Second sequel to the TV series' big-screen adaptation is okay action fare as Cruise investigates the death of a partner, who died spying on weapons dealer Hoffman. What is the villain's next move? The mission brings Cruise into the Vatican and Shanghai, but the action and the plot are so removed from reality they qualify as pure fantasy. You watch things at an emotional distance and don't really care about anything.

© Ron Altman