Mission: Impossible II ★★★½

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For almost an hour this feels way too much like one of the more forgettable Pierce Brosnan Bond movies (Tomorrow Never Dies, Die Another Day, I'm looking at you) - a mad man (who once worked alongside our hero) with a plan to unleash a deadly virus on the world, that bizarrely pointless car chase and the terribly unbelievable start of the love story between Thandie Newton and Tom Cruise. It actually feels more dated than the first movie.

However then there's the scene where Newton injects herself with the virus, for whatever reason I suddenly buy the love story, and the movie basically goes full John Woo from that moment on - slo-mo, doves (well, pigeons…), double guns, surprising blasts of emotion, the lot. It still never feels half as Mission:Impossible-y as the first, though.

PS. whenever I last watched Eyes Wide Shut I was thinking about Tom Cruise's strange "mask" phase but the only other movie in that phase I could think of was Vanilla Sky… I totally forgot of course this was the other. Maybe it was just coincidental but I find it sort of fascinating for an actor to wear masks in 3 practically consecutive movies…