Woo's ideas here are so iconic. Cruise's long mane, sunglasses, leather jacket, motorbike, fire behind him. The over-the-top set-pieces are a big standout two decades later in an era where big budget action usually means people wearing capes in blurry medium close-ups. It's also interesting that despite a poor reception it would prove a larger influence to the franchise than De Palma's M:I.
It feels like John Woo remakes former glories or other Asian action films for this sequel, but there is no denying there is a lot of action to see here. Thandie Newton is a gorgeous damsel in distress that steals the film from Tom Cruise. This film is ruined by the fact that it overdo the use of masks and several times do the film feel more like an unoffical "Face/Off" sequel and the main villain overact badly.
If you prefer to show Tom Cruise climbing cliffs and car-chasing and making love for the first 30 minutes of a spy film, I think you've got it wrong! There's no interesting plot, no interesting characterization, and Woo's visual characteristics - i.e. white pigeons in action scenes that I remember from Face/Off - are out of place, and therefore, they backfire.
Action films 101 how has this only got 2.1 on this site? one of the great motorized chases--aerobatic feats--masks at every turn(no real spoiler it's obvious)--kind of a worrying love triangle dynamic that wasn't really addressed re the 4 I can't see what I'm typing anymore and I wonder if only my followers would be reading this and if so hey
Although John Woo had proven he could 'do Hollywood' in the splendid Hard Target and Broken Arrow, this was never going to work. Dougray Scott is a spectacularly ineffectual and unthreatening villain, there are too many slow and boring stretches, and Woo doesn't get to murder anyone graphically in slow motion. He chucks in a few doves but it's just absolutely dreadful.
Somehow remembered this being much better. Ten years on this entry just seems like a John Woo parody of himself. The story is super light, the villians kind of lame and the lack of sexual chemistry between Cruise and Thandie Newton pretty laughable. Some very good stunt work but with no real set piece to highlight the film like the other entries. Save 'Hard Boiled' Woo's american entries have always disappointed.