For other uses, see Mission: Impossible (disambiguation).

Mission: Impossible II (also known as M:i-2) is a 2000 action film directed by John Woo, and starring Tom Cruise, who also served as the film's producer. It is a sequel to Brian De Palma's 1996 film Mission Impossible with Cruise reprising his role as agent Ethan Hunt of the IMF, a top-secret espionage and clandestine operation agency.

Theatrical teaser poster

Plot[edit | edit source]

In Sydney, Australia at the laboratories of the company, Biocyte Pharmaceuticals, a Russian scientist, Dr. Vladimir Nekhorvich (Rade Serbedzija) creates a virus called Chimera along with the cure, known as Bellerophon. Nekhorvich calls upon Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) to accompany him on a flight to Atlanta, Georgia, with IMF presuming he means to deliver Chimera into safe hands. Whilst flying over the Rocky Mountains, an announcement is made by the captain (Hugh Stamp played by Richard Roxburgh) that there has been a drop in cabin pressure. As a precaution, he releases the oxygen masks. Ethan gets up to find out what is going on; meanwhile, when Ethan returns, he kills Nekhorvich by breaking his neck and reveals himself to be IMF agent Sean Ambrose (Dougray Scott) wearing a face mask. Ambrose and his team steal Nekorvich's suitcase (with sample vials inside) and parachute to safety just as the plane crashes into a mountain, killing everyone on board.

In Utah, the real Ethan Hunt is free climbing whilst on vacation. When he reaches the top, he is given a message from IMF that he has to recover the stolen vials. He may choose two team members out of the three on his team, but the third must be Nyah Nordoff-Hall (Thandie Newton), a professional thief.

Ethan travels to Seville, Spain to find Nyah and they match wits over the theft of a diamond necklace from a club. When Nyah finds out Ethan's identity as a spy, she scoffs at his attempt to recruit her. But she changes her mind after he saves her life in a high speed car chase and they become romantically involved.

That evening Ethan meets commander Swanbeck (Anthony Hopkins) at the IMF HQ in Seville. Swanbeck informs Ethan that Nekhorvich is dead and suggests that Nyah be used to gain information from Ambrose about his plans because he had been wanting Nyah back ever since she left him six months ago.

Ethan and Nyah travel to Sydney where Ethan meets with Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames), his partner from the first film, and Billy Baird (John Polson), establishing their base on a sheep farm outside the city. Nyah meanwhile arrives at Sean's compound to begin retrieving information (not before sleeping with Sean).

Hugh Stamp questions Sean about her as he is suspicious she may be a Trojan horse sent by IMF. Sean cuts off the tip of Hugh's finger for questioning him about her. Later at a horse racing event, Ethan and his team are watching Sean and Nyah. Sean leaves Nyah to go and speak to John C. McCloy (Brendan Gleeson), the head of Biocyte and Nekhorvich's boss. Sean shows McCloy a video on a digital camera in the bar. When Sean returns to Nyah, she manages to get the camera's memory card from Sean's left jacket pocket and then goes to find the video turns out to be footage of the effects Chimera had on Doctor Sergei Gradski, one of Nekorvich's colleagues, who was deliberately infected to test Chimera; the virus causes mass destruction of red blood cells-after a person has been infected with Chimera for 20 hours, nothing can save them, not even Bellerophon.

That evening Ethan and his team kidnap John C. McCloy (when Billy poses as a replacement to his regular driver). McCloy reveals that Nekhorvich had actually taken all of Biocyte's Bellerophon, in the vials he carried (stolen by Ambrose) when traveling to Atlanta: Nekhorvich had in fact injected himself with the virus, since this would have been the only way to safely smuggle the virus into the US. IMF had thus been mistaken in assuming that Ambrose had stolen Chimera. McCloy still has some of the virus, and has made a deal with Ambrose to regain the cure stolen by Nekhorvich (at a bid of £37,000,000). Meanwhile Nyah is at Ambrose's compound where she meets Ethan, who tells her to stay there and do what Ambrose asks. As she leaves, the man who she assumed was Ethan unmasks himself revealing himself to be a bitterly upset Ambrose. Now that he knows of Nyah's true allegiance (especially since Nyah tried to come on to him) and that Ethan plans to go into Biocyte to destroy Chimera, Ambrose gathers his team together and heads to Biocyte.

At the same time, Ethan gets dropped into the Biocyte roof by Billy and Luther guiding Ethan from his van outside the building. Ethan then goes about destroying the last remaining samples of Chimera. Ambrose and his men interrupt Ethan before he can destroy all the samples and during the ensuing gun fight the last sample of Chimera gets dropped on the floor. Ambrose orders Nyah to retrieve it so that Ethan cannot intervene. Just as she is about to, Luther (who survived the explosion) is able to contact Ethan and tell him Nyah is in the building. When Nyah collects the last sample, she deliberately injects herself with it so that Ambrose will have to keep her alive, as well as attempting to prevent Ambrose from acquiring the virus directly. Biocyte security is alerted by an explosion created by Ethan. Whilst Ambrose and his team exchange gun fire with the security guards Ethan vows to save Nyah, blows down a wall, free falls out of the hole he just created and parachutes to safety. Ambrose and his team take Nyah away.

Next morning, Ambrose and his team go to a Biocyte facility on the outskirts of Sydney where they meet John C. McCloy. During the meeting, Ambrose orders his men to cut Nyah loose in downtown Sydney. As she is infected with Chimera, the virus will trigger a pandemic, starting with 17 million people in Australia before spreading across the world, that will cause demand for Bellerophon to sky-rocket. Ambrose demands McCloy's money for funding a massive purchase of stock options so that Ambrose would then make billions and would also own 51% of Biocyte. McCloy refuses to cooperate at first but having no choice, transfers the money. Ethan breaks up the meeting by blowing down the door. Ambrose sends Hugh Stamp and some other of his men to kill Ethan (after he is spotted through the fire caused by the explosion). Hugh finds Ethan first and, after a little hand to hand fight, Ethan drops a grenade which explodes and incapacitates Hugh. Ethan then calls to Sean (pretending he is Hugh) and after Ambrose shoots who he believes is Ethan, it is revealed he has killed Hugh from the bandage on his finger. This diversion allows Ethan to steal Bellerophon and a car chase between both Ethan and Ambrose's teams breaks out along the Sydney coast roads.

During the chase, Luther manages to locate Nyah who is on the cliffs about to kill herself so she cannot infect anyone else with chimera. Ethan orders Luther and Billy to go and collect her while he deals with the rest of Ambrose team. After the rest of his team are killed, Ambrose chases Ethan to a deserted beach where the two engage in a fist fight (during which Ambrose nearly kills Ethan with a knife to the eye). Ethan manages to gain the upper hand and knock Ambrose unconscious just as Luther and Billy arrive with Nyah. As Ethan is walking to Nyah, Ambrose points his gun at Ethan from behind, luckily Ethan manages to find his gun in time to shoot Ambrose himself. Nyah is injected with Bellerophon just in time.

Later Ethan informs Swanbeck that Chimera was all destroyed by fire which is why he could not bring back a living sample of the virus. Swanbeck then agrees to wipe out Nyah's criminal record and Ethan goes on another vacation, this time with Nyah in Sydney.

Cast[edit | edit source]

  • Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt
  • Dougray Scott as Sean Ambrose
  • Thandie Newton as Nyah Nordoff-Hall
  • Ving Rhames as Luther Stickell
  • Richard Roxburgh as Hugh Stamp
  • John Polson as Billy Baird
  • Brendan Gleeson as John C. McCloy
  • Anthony Hopkins as Mission Commander Swanbeck
  • Rade Šerbedžija as Dr. Nekhorvich (as Radé Sherbedgia)
  • William Mapother as Wallis
  • Dominic Purcell as Ulrich
  • Mathew Wilkinson as Michael
  • Nicholas Bellas Accountant
  • Cristina Brogers as Flamenco Dancer
  • Kee Chan as Chemist
  • Kim Fleming as Larrabee
  • Sam Jones as Plane Passenger

Production[edit | edit source]

Production of the film was troubled and was shut down for several weeks as the script was re-worked. As a result both Dougray Scott and Thandie Newton lost the chance to appear in starring roles in other films. Cruise and Woo had reportedly clashed several times throughout filming over creative differences, but both walked away from it on good terms.

The studio expressed concern over the safety of filming Ethan Hunt's entrance in the film, where he is rock climbing. Cruise refused to drop the idea because he could not think of a better way to reintroduce the character. There was no safety net as he filmed the sequence, but he did have a harness. He tore his shoulder when performing Hunt's jump from one part of the cliff to another.

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