Critics have chosen to accept their latest mission from Tom Cruise, giving "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol" strong reviews in its opening weekend.
The fourth film in the action franchise, directed by Brad Bird ("The Incredibles") this time, finds Cruise's Ethan Hunt disavowed by his secret agency. So the superspy must stop a global nuclear terrorist with no official help and a ragtag crew consisting of Simon Pegg, Jeremy Renner and Paula Patton.
AP Movie Writer David Germain gave it three stars out of four, saying: "Granted, this is the real world, "M:I'-style, where Cruise's missions and stunts truly are impossible by the laws of physics and normal, plausible storytelling constraints. But Bird applies the anything-can-happen limitlessness of cartoons and just goes for it, creating some thrilling, dizzying, amazing action sequences."
Another sequel, "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows," finds Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law reteaming as the intrepid detective and his sidekick, Dr. Watson. AP Movie Critic Christy Lemire gave it just one and a half stars, saying: "Director Guy Ritchie once again applies his revisionist approach to Arthur Conan Doyle's classic literary character, infusing the film with his trademark, hyperkinetic aesthetic and turning the renowned detective into a wisecracking butt-kicker. But what seemed clever and novel the first time around now feels stale and tired."
On the other end of the artistic spectrum is "Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked." The third film in the family friendly series finds Alvin, Simon, Theodore and the gang stuck on a remote island. AP Entertainment Writer Jake Coyle wrote: "Like the earlier two, "Chipwrecked' is full of the cheapest kind of pop culture references. Here is Alvin aping James Bond with a tail "shaken, not stirred,' a suggestion to follow the Chipmunks on "Critter' and, gulp, a Charlie Sheen-ism of "winning."' He gave the movie one and a half stars.
Here's a look at how these movies and others fared on the top review websites as of Friday afternoon. Each score is the percentage of positive reviews for the film:
- "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol": Metacritic, 74; Movie Review Intelligence, 78.7; Rotten Tomatoes, 94. Average: 82.2.
- "Carnage": Metacritic, 57; Movie Review Intelligence, 58.2; Rotten Tomatoes, 67. Average: 60.7.
- "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows": Metacritic, 49; Movie Review Intelligence, 54; Rotten Tomatoes, 64. Average: 55.7.
- "Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked": Metacritic, 24; Movie Review Intelligence, 40.1; Rotten Tomatoes, 10. Average: 24.7.