Thursday, August 03, 2006

The Migraine Scene


Last night I saw Mission Impossible III. I am not a big fan of the Mission Impossible movies, even though Tom Cruise is handsome and really has to be in good shape to play in these movies. The series I adored and still watch the re-runs of. The series was more of a team effort, not just one agent with everyone else supporting him alone. There was a lot of action and adventure, and even a pretty good story surrounding Ethan Hunt, Cruise's character. I enjoyed the movie. I did not love the movie and want to own it afterwards. I am even glad I was able to see it on the big screen. I guess you could say I am luke warm where this movie is concerned . . . except for one scene.

In the movie, Ethan Hunt is trying to get out of the IMF (the Impossible Missions Force) and wants a life with his fiance' who ends up being his wife (Julia Meade played by Michelle Monaghan). A superior informs him that the one person Hunt trained and even recommended for a job had been taken hostage. This one person is Lindsey Farris (Keri Russell). A pretty blond. Hunt's mission, if he chose to accept it, was to get her out and get her back to the states. She was being held in Germany by a really nasty man by the name of Owen Davien who was played by Philip Seymour Hoffman.

Davien is the kind of guy who tortures for fun. How do we know? Because he tells Hunt what he did to Agent Farris was "fun." Yeah, he's a bad, bad man. Perhaps it is needless to say, Ethan Hunt and his team (the only returning member is Ving Rhames as Luther) get the girl and after giving her a massive dose of adrenaline straight to the heart, get her to a helicopter just as she begins to go into serious pain where her head is concerned just as a pretty good helicopter chase ensues. Luckily for Lindsey Farris, Hunt tells her, "This is adrenaline. And you're going to feel it."

Hunt, using a gadget, discovers an electrical charge implanted in her head. It is priming and preparing to go off. The only way to save her? To shock her heart with a defibrillator and then shock her again to bring her back. Piece of cake. Or it would have been had it not been for the helicopter chasing them and shooting nasty missiles. Hunt gets the onboard defibrillator and has to wait for it to charge, as well as save a team member from falling out of the helicopter. Just as the charge is counting down at three seconds, the explosive charge goes off in Farris' pretty blond head and she is no more. There is angst in the helicopter and on the ground. Farris' death is covered by a car crash on I-95. The chewing out Hunt and his superior Musgrave (Billy Crudup) by Lawrence Fishburn as Theodore Brassel is not pleasant.

Hunt gets the bright idea of going and capturing Davien and without authorization plans on kidnapping the fellow while he is in the Vatican at a charity function of some kind. (We never know what the charity function is for and the Pope is never seen, which I found to be a little odd.) Of course Hunt and team do exactly as they have planned, capture Davien and on the transport plan back to the states Davien tells Hunt, "You know what I'm going to do don't you? I am going to get her, the woman, and I am going to make her cry, and bleed, and make her call out your name. Then I am going to kill you in front of her. Remember your friend in Germany? That was fun. Fun." For some reason I believed this character when he said it. He was cold. Scary cold.

When Hunt and team land and Davien is placed in a transport van the convoy begins easily. It doesn't last. There is a drone that begins shooting missiles. A helicopter filled with black clad, German speaking mercenaries who have only one agenda - free Davien. They do.

Once Davien is free, Hunt begins a mad race to the hospital where Julia works before Davien's henchmen can get to her. There is only seconds, perhaps minutes between the time when Davien is rescued and Julia goes missing. Davien has connections somewhere it seems.

Hunt is captured by Brassel because he, Hunt, is considered to be a rogue agent. Musgrave helps him escape and sends Hunt's team to him in China where Davien has said that he will spare Julia's life if he gets this thing code-named "The Rabbit's Foot." It is a biological agent.

Hunt and team succeed. Hunt takes "The Rabbit's Foot" to Davien who has him get into the back of a spiffy white limo and a vial of nasty brown liquid where Hunt is told, "Drink it. No questions." He does. Passes out. When he wakes, there is a nasty looking man there saying "Good morning" as he shoves something that looks like an ear-piercer up Hunt's nose and pulls a trigger. Hunt passes out again. When he wakes again, Julia is across from him with Davien beside her, and Davien has a gun. It does not look good.

Davien keeps asking where The Rabbit's Foot is and Hunt tells him, "I gave it to you." Davien keeps asking. Hunt keeps trying to buy Julia time. Davien shoots Julia in the leg. Hunt is racking his brain trying to come up with an answer. Davien says, quietly, almost placidly, "I am going to count to ten and if you have not told me what I want to know I am going to shoot her when I reach ten." Hunt has nothing else to tell Davien. He broke into a top-secret Chinese lab, stole the biological agent requested, nearly got killed in Shanghai traffic a dozen times over chasing the thing when it slipped out of his hands, had drank the icky brown stuff, and given, as far as he knew, Davien the correct thing!

Davien reaches ten. Julia dies. Hunt is more than devastated. More than shocked. Davien walks away and at the door begins whispering to a man we cannot see.


Before Davien is "removed" from IMF custody and Julia is taken, Hunt and Luther de-code a microchip Farris had sent to Hunt. It was a video message that said she thought Brassel had set her up! Yeah, the man top guy! The guy who wanted Davien caught so bad he couldn't hardly sleep at night!

It isn't Brassel who sits down across from Hunt. It is Musgrave. I thought that was a pretty good plot twist. He begins grilling Hunt on whether or not Farris bought his snow job that Brassel was trying to set her up. Did anyone else have a clue it was him or was everyone still buying that it was Brassel? Musgrave gets up and goes over to Julia. "Don't touch her!" Hunt roars. Musgrave rips the tape from off of Julia's mouth and part of a mask comes off too! It isn't Julia, it is Davien's assistant. The assistant he blamed for him getting caught in Rome!

Musgrave tells Hunt Julia is alive, but won't be for long, unless they get the information they need from Hunt. After talking to Julia to verify she is indeed Julia and is indeed alive Hunt escapes in a cool way. See the movie. It's cool. It isn't all that plausible, but it is Mission Impossible after all.

Big run through Shanghai. As I said, Tom Cruise really needs to be in shape for these movies. He flat out booked it through a good portion of this movie. I know there are tapings in movies, but he had to be in good shape none-the-less to do these things.

Hunt finds Julia! She is alive! She is tied and handcuffed and duct taped across the mouth. Hunt grabs his head. He looks like he is having a migraine. Now the movie becomes very interesting for me because I have been fighting migraines off and on for an entire week. The bad ones where all you can do is lay down and pray it goes away, or you die. There isn't much choice it feels like when they are that bad. Ethan Hunt/Tom Cruise looked like that. Davien tells Hunt, "I've activated the charge in your head. Remember what I said? She was going to bleed?" Shot of Julia. She has a few bruises and a few abrasions. So she has bled. "She was going to call your name?" Shot of Julia as Davien rips off the duct tape. She begins asking Ethan what's going on, and calling his name as Davien begins to beat the absolute crap out of Ethan hunt.

Hunt begins fighting back. Hunt gets more crap beat out of him. "Remember how I said I was going to kill you in front of her? Well, I'm going to kill her in front of you," Davien says and begins walking back toward the gun lying on the floor. Hunt looks at Julia. Julia looks at Hunt. There is calm trust in her eyes. Hunt charges Davien and the beatings are reversed.

However, as Hunt is giving Davien his beating, he is grabbing his head. He is using his elbows. He is fighting in a brutish, lethal fashion I can easily see a person with a migraine fighting with! I sat there and watched this scene and kept thinking, "Kill him for all of us who have those damnable things! He gave you yours on purpose! Get him! Get him!" I wanted to scream it out loud! I wanted to jump up and down and hoot and holler! But I didn't. I felt like it. But I didn't.

Hunt kills Davien.

Hunt frees Julia. Shows her how to take the safety off of the gun and reload it and gives her an extra clip. "Point and shoot. That's all it is. Point and shoot. Identify your target and point and shoot." All the while he is telling her this he is rigging a basin with water and turning on and off a power switch. When he has done all of this he explains he has a charge in his head and as he sits down on the floor he says, "I am going to die unless you kill me." I chuckled. Julia's response was, "What?" Yeah, I can see it. "Turn it on, then off. You can bring me back. Don't forget the off." As Julia begins to turn on the switch while Hunt is holding live wires (or soon to be live wires) he says, "Wait! Wait!....I love you. Don't forget the off."

Switch is thrown. Switch is off. Ethan Hunt is dead on the floor. Bad guys are coming. If Julia Meade had never held a gun before she did some mighty fine shooting and took out a miscellaneous mook and Musgrave to boot before beginning resuscitation procedures. It is looking as if Hunt may be no more. Then, voila! He is alive! Julia is in his arms! A gun is in his hand pointing at the dead Musgrave! "You did that?" he says, very bemused, quite proud.

Julia finds out Hunt is a member of the IMF. Hunt is given an interesting set of papers by Brassel. Hunt and Julia head off on their way to their honeymoon. Roll credits.

Yeah, the best part of the movie for me was the migraine scene. It was retribution. If someone purposely gave me a migraine, yeah, I'd go off on their ass too.


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