Mission: Impossible—Ghost Protocol (2011)

mission impossible ghost protocol poster 2011 movie tom cruise
8.0 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 8/10

Solid action, not a full relaunch

For being ghost the team sure can get whatever they want

Movie Info

Movie Name: Mission: Impossible—Ghost Protocol

Studio: Bad Robot Productions

Genre(s): Action/Adventure

Release Date(s): December 7, 2011 (UAE)/December 16, 2011 (US)

MPAA Rating: PG-13


Wait, the elevator would have worked after all?

A rogue former Russian nuclear expert named Cobalt (Michael Nyqvist) has stolen Russian launch codes and framed Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and his IMF agents as terrorists to cover-up the theft.  Now, Ethan has assembled a team of Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg), Jane Carter (Paula Patton), and William Brandt (Jeremy Renner) to help stop Cobalt.  Unfortunately, IMF has gone under Ghost Protocol, and Hunt and his men are on their own as they travel the globe in race against time to stop the threat of nuclear war.

Directed by Brad Bird, Mission:  Impossible—Ghost Protocol was the fourth film in the Mission:  Impossible series following Mission:  Impossible III from 2006.  The movie was well received by critics and became the biggest grossing film of the series.



Mission:  Impossible was a fun movie, Mission:  Impossible II was a bad movie, Mission:  Impossible III was fast paced and pretty fun…Mission:  Impossible—Ghost Protocol is probably most comparable to Mission:  Impossible III.

When Mission:  Impossible—Ghost Protocol was announced I wasn’t happy with the casting.  The movie felt like a reboot like every other film in the theaters.  Gone was the love of Ethan Hunt’s life Julia in Michelle Monaghan, and I always hated that aspect of the early James Bond films (Bond always saves a woman and you never heard from them again).  In this story, Ethan’s love is killed and Ethan is bitter and angry as a result.  Plus, Ethan’s best friend and coworker Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames) was shocking absent.  Fortunately, through the course of the adventure (which is smartly fast paced) this is all explained in a last scene which doesn’t negate the other films nor reboot the series.


Float like a butterfly or get burned in a bug-zapper!

Ethan’s got a whole new team in this adventure.  Tom Cruise remains Tom Cruise.  He’s got the charm but can also turn on the action…like him or hate him, he knows his roles.  He’s got the new “action” sidekick Simon Pegg as his tech guy (combine this with Star Trek, he’s reaching chronic supporting actor).  Paula Patton is good as the female member of the team out for revenge, and Jeremy Renner is also proving himself as an action star as the guilt-ridden Benji Dunn.  J.J. Abrams brings his Lost’s actor Josh Holloway for a small role and Tom Wilkinson also has a bit part.  I didn’t feel that Michael Nyqvist was the best villain for the film (though I did like Léa Seydoux).


Hey, aren’t you Hawkeye?

Like other Mission:  Impossible movies, the action was big and explosive.  I do like that the whole overused mask aspect of the movie was toned down and despite allegedly being “ghost” and low-tech, they seemed to still have a lot of toys (like the gloves which are cool but work for about three minutes).  The movie has some great locals and tons of jet setting (once again, I don’t know how they do it with no money or contacts, but it works for the movie).

Mission:  Impossible—Ghost Protocol is a fun entry in the Mission:  Impossible series which has had a long run.  Despite the bobble of Mission:  Impossible II, the series has remained surprisingly strong.  With a big success, the movie earned a sequel almost immediately.  Mission:  ImpossibleGhost Protocol is followed by Mission:  ImpossibleRogue Nation in 2015.

Related Links:

Mission:  Impossible (1996)

Mission:  Impossible II (2000)

Mission:  Impossible III (2006)

Mission:  Impossible—Rogue Nation (2015)

Mission:  Impossible—Fallout (2018)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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