MAJOR "MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE – ROGUE NATION" SPOILERS ARE AHEAD!
Another day, another impossible obstacle cleared. All in a movie's work for Ethan Hunt.
In "Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation," Tom Cruise's veteran agent takes on international traitors, terrorists and spies of all sizes, and lives to tell the tale, thanks to sturdy and shaky alliances alike. But even though he manages to save the day, we're still left with a bunch of questions about what happened in "Rogue Nation" by the time the credits roll, and questions about what might come up next.
We also have some lingering questions stemming from "Ghost Protocol," so let's deal with two of them right off the top...
Where was Jane?Paramount
Paula Patton's tough-as-nails spy was easily the best character in Brad Bird's "Mission: Impossible" movie, but was completely absent in "Rogue Nation." Ethan gave Jane a mission at the end of "Ghost Protocol," but apparently it put her so far out of reach that she couldn't pop in on the latest movie's action. With any luck, Jane's absence will be fixed in the future, because she's one of the best operatives in the whole "M:I" universe.
So, we're totally done with Ethan's wife, then?Paramount
That last lingering look between Ethan and Michelle Monaghan's Julia at the end of "Ghost Protocol" appears to be the true end for their marriage, since she wasn't mentioned or seen at all in "Rogue Nation." As with Jane, let's hope she's at least enjoying some happily ever after somewhere.
Okay, onto what was actually IN the movie…
Wait, is that the Rabbit's Foot?Paramount
It was A rabbit's foot, but it wasn't THE rabbit's foot, the enigmatic MacGuffin from "Mission: Impossible III." Really fun Easter egg all the same.
What was Ethan's life like for those six months?Paramount
Aside from growing an epic beard and apparently NOT being in Cuba, that is. Eating some Parisian delicacies, nursing his gunshot wound, and getting some much needed R&R, I hope.
Are Benji and Ethan actually BFFs, or not?Paramount
Because Benji told Hunley that he's not Ethan's friend anymore, while strapped to a polygraph machine, and then just a few days later told Ethan that they're totally still friends. Which one is it, Dunn? Stop messing with us!
Are Luther and Brandt BFFs now?Paramount
Yes, yes they are, and it's wonderful.
Why was Brandt stuck in the office?Paramount
He was a field agent in "Ghost Protocol," albeit a reluctant one, after believing for so long that he failed in his mission to save Ethan's wife. Even though he was wrong, and Julia was still alive, was the whole experience so traumatic that he had to take a desk job in Washington?
How long can you hold your breath?Paramount
Because three minutes seems like a LONG time. Don't try it at home, please.
Why wasn't Ilsa always part of the swim team?Paramount
If Ethan can only hold his breath for three minutes, and Ilsa was able to get down in the water to save him anyway, why wasn't she just always part of the plan to begin with? It was nice to have her as a failsafe option, but why not have her dive down after, say, two minutes? Feels like it would've saved everyone a bit of a headache, especially Ethan.
How mean was Ilsa's motorcycle prank?Paramount
REALLY mean. And REALLY terrific.
What's next for Solomon Lane?Paramount
He's trapped in a box with a gun all out of ammo (one assumes, anyway), firmly in IMF custody. Will we ever see him again, or is he going to be buried so deep down in an IMF prison that we'll forget all about him?
Is Solomon Lane secretly Benji Dunn's brother?Paramount
Because holy ship, Simon Pegg and Sean Harris look so much alike. It's creepy.
What about the rest of the Syndicate?Paramount
Cut the head off the snake, and two more will grow in its place, or something like that. Anyway, just because Solomon Lane is behind bars, doesn't mean that every single operative under his employ is locked away as well. Could we see a "Rogue Nation" sequel dealing with any of the cleanup leftover from the Syndicate takedown?
What's next for Ilsa?Paramount
She's out of the spy game, thanks to the destruction of the Syndicate. Does that mean she's out of the "Mission: Impossible" franchise? Please say no… or, if yes, please let her have her own spinoff franchise. The character is too cool to retire for good.
Will there be more Baldwin?Paramount
He's all in on IMF now, after all. With any luck, the Hunt/Hunley combo platter will continue to be served for many impossible missions to come.
What's Ethan going to do with all that cash?Paramount
If anyone in the world deserves to skim off the top of some of those bank accounts, it's Ethan Hunt. Unless…
Will Ethan ever go rogue?Paramount
At one point, Ethan is described as a gambler whose luck will one day run out, leading to the deaths of thousands. "Who will be the villain then?" The implication throughout the movie is that Ethan and Solomon are not as far apart as one would initially think, a laughable premise on the surface… until you remember the original "Mission: Impossible" movie's subversion of the classic Jim Phelps character, a heroic figure in the "M:I" TV series. Is it possible that Ethan could go the way of the Syndicate at some point in a future movie? Honestly, I wouldn't mind it — just as long as it takes many, many, many more movies to get to that point.
Is "Rogue Nation" the best "Mission: Impossible" movie?Paramount
When will Ethan return?Paramount
There's nothing official on the horizon just yet... but UNofficially, Cruise recently said that there's talk of filming the sixth "Mission: Impossible" next summer. Let's hope he's right.