The Best and Worst of the Mission: Impossible Franchise

For many Mission: Impossible fans, the less said about Mission: Impossible 2, the better. But on a list of the “worst” films in the franchise, the first sequel should be at the top. Because everything that made the debut film great—its steady, mature tone as a spy thriller and surprisingly restrained action—flies out the window. The sequel, directed by Hong Kong director John Woo, a master of incredible action films, pushes the scale to 11 and up and often feels like a movie from an entirely different series.


With a rambling plot populated by human caricatures, even the action itself doesn’t make much sense, more like a cartoon than a hardcore thriller. To be fair, Wu is a man with a real flair for action and has made many brilliant films, including Face Off, one of the best action films of the 90s. And while some of the spectacles in M:I-2 are decent popcorn entertainment at times, compared to the rest of the franchise, the movie is a big eyesore. This is the only film that received “rotten” ratingwhile his “too cool for school” style barely worked at the time and was a poor fit for the series.

Wu and Cruz have created some of the best action films of all time, but together they are incompatible. From the sickening amount of zooms and slow motion to the mesmerizing use of music, Limp Bizkit is the only film in the series that we just pretend doesn’t exist.


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