I've seen all the other Mission: Impossible films, though I don't really recall much from any of them. I will say, though... with all the insane action set pieces this movie delivers, I think it'll be hard to forget this one. This time, the story gives us, again, Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise), whose team has been framed for inciting war on Russia. The President declares Ghost Protocol, which shuts down the unit indefinitely. So now it's up to Ethan, Benji (Simon Pegg), Jane (Paula Patton), and Brandt (Jeremy Renner) to figure out what's really going on and stop it before it's too late.
There are two things that split this movie. There's the thing that makes it outstanding, and the thing that brings it down a bit. What escalates this film is the brilliant action. There are some truly suspenseful moments. I mean, you know Cruise is gonna make it, but it still keeps you on the edge of your seat. Everybody has seemingly been talking about two moments that pretty much happen back-to-back: scaling the building and the sandstorm chase. There's a reason for that, as they are both incredible moments in the film.
What brings the movie down, however... is everything else. I didn't feel incredibly invested in the overall story. It wasn't boring or anything, but it wasn't anything new or exciting. There's a nuke, they need to stop it, there are obstacles in the way. Again, what elevates the film is how they solve the obstacles. But getting to each one isn't all that enthralling. And I would actually argue that if it weren't for Simon Pegg, the non-action scenes would have been straight-up boring. Pegg brings charm and humor to every scene he's in, making the film that much better for it. And Renner does well himself, too, bringing both humor and sadness to the story.
When this film is good, it's really freakin' good. When it isn't, it's still good, but it could have been much better. I would agree that it's easily the best in the series. I do recommend it, and for three reasons. See it for the brilliant action, for Simon Pegg, and for Paula Patton eye candy... I mean, damn. They're nice. I mean, it's nice. The film. Action. Boom. Pegg. Funny. And stuff. Yeah. Check them... it... out. I'm gonna stop now.