Skyscraper: A former FBI Hostage Rescue Team Leader and U.S. war veteran Will Sawyer turned security and safety expert of um skyscrapers is framed for setting on fire, the most expensive and tallest skyscraper. But here’s the rub. His family is trapped inside that blazing skyscraper. So he sets out to rescue them whilst having to figure out how to clear his name and find the perpetrator of this frame-up.
Now, if you go to the bathroom and come back an hour later, you can still pretty much follow the plot. It is terribly basic and uninspired, and frankly, extremely ridiculous.
MI-Fallout: Ethan Hunt is back with his IMF crew and their mission leads to a dangerous chase for three plutonium cores that will be used as a nuclear weapon on simultaneous attack on The Vatican, Jerusalem and Mecca, and Saudi Arabia. To complicate things, a CIA assassin tags along for the ride.
This is nothing you haven’t seen from all the other MIs before it. Rubber masks and conspiracies, duplicity within duplicity within duplicity. But at least this has the decency to be quite imaginative and a little less derivative. It’s quite fun figuring out who is on which side, even though some are quite obvious, but still, when the revelation comes, I still get a kick out of it.
Skyscraper: The Rock is basically McGyvering things and/or Die Harding things, and yeah, it makes for good entertainment. Hold on to your pantses for the various pee triggering and vertigo inducing stunts.
MI-Fallout: When you go see Fallout, you immediately think, this ain’t for real but it looks real! But everybody knows how serious Tom Cruise is with his stunts. So if you are seeing it on-screen, no matter how dangerous, Tom Cruise probably did it in real life. And I think it pays off. Every action sequence looks astonishingly authentic. I mean that big helicopter chase scene was just nail-bitingly awesome! And the fisticuffs are about as crunchy as ever!
Skyscraper: I do love a Family Team. And I saw this movie a few weeks after seeing Incredibles 2. And I thought, Neve Campbell is Elastigirl! She’s all up in that burning swanky building, with her awesome take-charge attitude, kicking goons with her awesome boots, and keeping safe her two children! The two children though are very forgettable. So here’s what should happen, Neve Campbell in her own action film, ala Mila Jovovich!
MI-Fallout: As always Benji (Simon Pegg) and Luther (Ving Rhames) adds a lot to every darned Mission Impossible movie. They are our audience surrogate (more Pegg than Rhames) and makes the movie a little less dreary and cold with their banter and quips. I am also quite happy to have Ilsa Faust (Rebecca Ferguson) come back and join the gang. Because I mean will you look at that awesome spy name? Second, she kicks ass at action sequences.
Skyscraper: Goons and things. Henchmen and things. Once again, very clichéd characterization. The Skyscraper though is the one that should get an Oscar.
MI-Fallout: An assassin CIA agent, August Walker (Henry Cavill) throws a monkey wrench in the IMF’s plans. I must say, not bad Clark Kent. He is actually quite effective as a villain. There is that coldness about him, with a shade of dark mystery on the side. He has that whole “you can trust me, but not quite” vibe.
The Action Hero
Skyscraper: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is a good action star. Effective enough. But I think he truly shines specifically in action comedies because he has excellent comedic timing. And in movies like Skyscraper he doesn’t get to flex his comedy and charm muscle that much which I think is his biggest strength. So here, his character just comes across as a little boring.
MI-Fallout: Tom Cruise as an action star has gone through some ups and downs. I don’t think The Mummy (2017) was any good, was it? I don’t quite feel the urge to see any of his Jack Reachers either. But clearly, his gig as Ethan Hunt has taken a favorable turn for the actor. And I think we go see Mission Impossible for Tom Cruise and his death-defying action sequences. Like I said earlier, the guy commits! If you can name it, he’s done it. Although his attempt at giving Ethan Hunt more depth can sometimes turn too schmaltzy for my taste. I think I am more or less good with him being cold and mechanical, because clearly Ethan Hunt is not human! Nor is Tom Cruise, most probably.
Overall Winner: MI-Fallout.
A clear landslide for Mr. Tom Cruise. (was this an unfair fight?) But I still love you Dwayne. I’d totally support your Presidential Campaign.
Skyscraper (2018) – 2/5 Stars
Mission Impossible – Fallout (2018) – 4/5 Stars