I’m curious as to the recommended sequence for watching Mission: Impossible movies in order of event. Encompassing six films so far, the Mission Impossible series has seen a huge variety of incredibly daring stunts, some memorable, scenery-chewing villains, and all manner of sneaky deceptions involving rubber masks.
Beginning in 1996 (six years after the events of the previous TV sequel series), this film series follows the missions of the IMF’s main field team led by Hunt in an effort to thwart an enemy force and avert a global catastrophe. Even though some characters, like Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames) and Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg), have recurring roles in the films, the series primarily centers on Hunt as the main character, as opposed to the ensemble cast structure of the television series. Now is the time to catch up on the entire Mission Impossible series by watching the films in chronological order. For your convenience, we’ve provided a handy chronological order of all the Mission Impossible film series below.
Moreover. The series has been well-received by critics and moviegoers alike, and it ranks as the 16th highest-grossing film franchise of all time. If you want to watch all of Tom Cruise’s Mission Impossible movies in chronological order, here is your guide. Luckily, chronologically and by release date are the same, because the timeline of the Mission: Impossible franchise is pretty straightforward, which follows the missions of the IMF’s main field team under the leadership of Hunt to stop an enemy force all the while preventing an impending global disaster. So here is the list of Tom Cruise Mission Impossible Movies in Order chronologically you can follow:
Overview of Mission: Impossible (TV series)
Watch the original Mission: Impossible TV series before diving into the film adaptations, as the movies pick up six years after as a continuation of the 1966 television series of the same name and its 1988 sequel series.
1. Mission: Impossible (1966 TV series)
Mission: Impossible, a television series that aired on CBS from September 1966 to March 1973 and was created and initially produced by Bruce Geller, followed the exploits of a small covert team of secret government agents known as the Impossible Missions Force and their use of sophisticated and subtle methods of deceiving, manipulating, and thwarting hostile Iron Curtain governments, third-world dictators, corrupt industrialists, and crime lords.
2. Mission: Impossible (1988 TV series)
The 1988 TV series Mission: Impossible is a continuation of the original Mission: Impossible, which aired from 1966 to 1973 and followed the exploits of a covert group of American government agents known as the Impossible Missions Force (IMF).
Fifteen years have passed since the conclusion of the original Mission: Impossible series, and this new series picks up where it left off. Jim Phelps is brought out of retirement to form a new team of IMF agents in order to find who killed his protégé and successor as leader of the ultra-secret Impossible Missions Force. Jim, having identified the murderer, remains with the team in an effort to preserve its unity. Casey is the first ongoing IMF agent to be disavowed on screen when she is killed in the middle of season 1. Secret Service agent Shannon Reed takes over for the rest of the season. The rest of Phelps’s team has remained unchanged from the beginning of the series until this point.
The TV series inspired the series of theatrical motion pictures starring Tom Cruise beginning in 1996. In 1978, it was suggested that the show’s plot be adapted into a feature film for television. In spite of this and other attempts throughout the ’80s, no full-length feature film ever saw the light of day. Later, Six films featuring Tom Cruise as team leader Ethan Hunt were eventually released, and two more are currently in production.
Order to Watch The Mission Impossible Film Series Movies (Chronologically)
1. Mission: Impossible (1996)
The first film in the Mission: Impossible franchise, Mission: Impossible, is a continuation of the 1966 TV series of the same name and its 1988 sequel series (canonically set six years after the latter), and it follows Ethan Hunt as he tries to find “the mole” responsible for framing him for the deaths of most of his Impossible Missions Force (IMF) team. Ethan, while on the run, tries to find the real traitor so he can clear his name.
In the film, Ethan Hunt plays a secret agent who is accused of selling government secrets to an arms dealer named “Max,” leading to the deaths of his espionage team during a botched mission in Prague. Hunt races like a burning fuse to stay one step ahead of his pursuers and get closer to discovering the shocking truth as he dodges government assassins, breaks into the CIA’s most impenetrable vault, and clings to the roof of a speeding bullet train.
The updated Mission: Impossible, directed by Brian De Palma, features a lot of impressive special effects and grand spectacle, but its plot can be difficult to follow at times. With a total of $457.7 million, the film was the third highest-grossing release of 1996.
2. Mission: Impossible 2 (2000)
Mission: Impossible 2 is the second film in the Mission: Impossible film series and the return of Tom Cruise as the world’s greatest spy, Ethan Hunt, on a mission to recover and destroy a deadly biological weapon known as “Chimera” from rogue IMF agent Sean Ambrose.
In the film, Ethan Hunt, played by Tom Cruise, is an I.M.F. agent tasked with recovering and eradicating a supply of the genetically engineered disease Chimera. The fact that he isn’t the only one looking for disease samples makes his mission impossible. And he has to do it all while competing with a group of international terrorists led by a renegade ex-I.M.F. agent who have already stolen the cure, Bellerophon, and need Chimera to carry out their global pandemic.
He enlists the assistance of international thief Nyah Hall (Thandie Newton), in whom he develops an instant attraction, to infiltrate and locate the terrorist group. Not only is Agent Hunt racing against the clock to locate and destroy “Chimera” before the terrorists get their hands on it, but he is also searching for “Bellerophon” in order to save his beloved, who has contracted the disease and is in imminent danger of dying a horrible and swift death.
Your cranium may crave more substance, but the amazing action sequences will satisfy your appetite. With a positive critical reception that praised the film’s action sequences and Woo’s direction, Mission: Impossible 2 (2000) earned $546 million worldwide and was the year’s highest-grossing film.
3. Mission: Impossible III (2006)
The third film in the Mission: Impossible film series, Mission: Impossible III, follows Ethan Hunt as he races from Rome to Shanghai to rescue a captured agent and stop Davian from eliminating his next target: Ethan’s wife.
In the film, Ethan Hunt has retired from active duty in the film to train new IMF agents. But he’s called back into action to face the most difficult villain he’s ever faced: Owen Davian, an international weapons and information provider with no remorse and no conscience. Hunt gathers his team – his old friend Luther Strickell, transportation expert Declan, and background operative Zhen – to rescue Lindsey, one of his own trainees, who was kidnapped while on a Davian surveillance detail. Davian quickly reveals himself to be well-protected, well-connected, and downright malicious, forcing Hunt to extend his journey back into the field in order to save his wife, Julia, and uncover IMF double agents in the process.
Fast-paced, with eye-popping stunts and special effects, the latest Mission: Impossible 3 delivers everything an action fan could ask for. Reviewers largely agreed that Mission: Impossible III was an improvement upon its predecessor, praising the film’s pacing, Hoffman’s performance, and the action sequences. With $399 million, the film was the eighth highest-grossing movie of 2006.
4. Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (2011)
With a bombing blaming them for terrorism, Agent Ethan Hunt and his top team must go underground in Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol, the fourth film in the Mission: Impossible franchise.
In the film, When a mission by Hunt’s team goes wrong, resulting in the bombing of the Kremlin, and now Hunt and his team must race against time to find a nuclear extremist codenamed “Cobalt” who has gained access to Russian nuclear launch codes. After the president discovers that the IMF was involved in the bombing, he is forced to disavow the organization and implement “Ghost Protocol,” leaving Hunt and his team without support. Now, Ethan must save the world while working with a group of fellow IMF fugitives whose motives are unclear. There has never been a time when the mission was more imminent, risky, or impossible.
Stylish, fast-paced, and loaded with gripping set pieces, the fourth Mission: Impossible is big-budget popcorn entertainment that really works. Critical consensus was favorable, with many praising the film’s action set pieces, Tom Cruise’s performance, and Bird’s direction. It made $694 million worldwide, making it the highest-grossing film of the franchise and Cruise’s highest-grossing film until Mission: Impossible – Fallout was released in 2018.
5. Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (2015)
Mission: Impossible Rogue Nation continues the franchise’s thrilling resurgence—and proves that Tom Cruise remains an action star without equal. It is a sequel to Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (2011) and is the fifth installment in the Mission: Impossible film series.
Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation follows IMF agent Ethan Hunt comes under threat from the Syndicate. Ethan Hunt is on the run from the CIA, following the IMF’s dissolution, as he tries to prove the existence of the Syndicate, a mysterious global freelance terrorist group composed of many former intelligence officers from many different countries and its ‘ledger’. These highly trained operatives are hellbent on creating a new world order through an escalating series of terrorist attacks. To prove the Syndicate’s existence and bring the organization down by any means necessary, Ethan must join forces to assemble his team with an elusive, disavowed agent (Rebecca Ferguson), who may or may not be on his side as he faces his most impossible mission yet.
The film received positive reviews from critics, with praise for the action sequences, cast performances (particularly Cruise’s), screenplay, and McQuarrie’s direction. It grossed $683 million worldwide, becoming the eighth-highest-grossing film of 2015 and the then-second-highest grossing film in the franchise.
6. Mission: Impossible – Fallout (2018)
After Ethan Hunt successfully apprehended Solomon Lane two years ago, the Syndicate’s remaining members regrouped under the name the Apostles. The group, which is led by an anonymous fundamentalist named John Lark, has plans to acquire three plutonium cores.
In Berlin, “elements of the Eastern European underworld” are selling three stolen plutonium cores, and IMF agent Ethan Hunt is tasked with purchasing them. Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise), while on a mission to retrieve stolen plutonium, puts the safety of his team ahead of completing the mission, resulting in the acquisition of nuclear weapons by a dangerous organization with the stated goal of destroying humanity.
Ethan and his IMF team (Simon Pegg, Ving Rhames, Rebecca Ferguson) are racing against time to stop the nuclear fallout, and they are forced to become reluctant partners with a hard-hitting CIA agent (Henry Cavill). Never before have we faced such a destructive threat, witnessed such unbelievable feats, or been given such an impossible task.
It is the sequel to Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (2015) and is the sixth installment in the Mission: Impossible film series, received critical acclaim and is widely regarded as the best installment in the franchise. The film grossed $791 million worldwide, making it the franchise’s highest-grossing film, the eighth-highest-grossing film of 2018, and the highest-grossing film of Cruise’s career (until Top Gun: Maverick in 2022).
7. Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One (2023)
The sequel to Mission: Impossible – Fallout (2018) and is the seventh installment in the Mission: Impossible film series, Mission Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One is set to pick up after the events of the previous film and follow Cruise’s Ethan Hunt in his penultimate mission as an IMF agent.
In the film, Ethan Hunt and his IMF team embark on their most dangerous mission to track down a terrifying weapon that threatens humanity before it falls into the wrong hands. With control of the future and the fate of the world at stake, and dark forces from Ethan’s past closing in, a deadly race around the globe begins. Confronted by a mysterious and powerful nemesis named Gabriel, Ethan is forced to consider that nothing can matter more than his mission – not even the lives of those he cares about most. Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One is scheduled for release in the United States on July 12, 2023, by Paramount Pictures.
8. Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part Two (2024)
Cruise returns in his eighth appearance as the series’s lead character, Ethan Hunt, it is expected to be his final appearance in the series. Based on the television series Mission: Impossible by Bruce Geller, Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part Two is a direct sequel to Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One (2023) and the eighth and final installment in the Mission: Impossible film series. The film is scheduled to be released by Paramount Pictures on June 28, 2024.
How many Mission Impossible movies are there?
There are SIX (6) films in the Mission: Impossible franchise by 2022. Beginning with 1996’s Mission Impossible and continuing through its six sequels, the sixth and most recent film, titled Mission: Impossible – Fallout, was released on July 27, 2018. Upcoming Dead Reckoning has two works of art in its seventh and eighth movies. The first installment will be released in July 2023, and the second will follow in June 2024.
All Mission Impossible Movies in Order of Release Date
Here is the List of Mission Impossible Films in order, they were released.
1. Mission: Impossible — May 22, 1996
2. Mission: Impossible 2 — May 24, 2000
3. Mission: Impossible III — May 5, 2006
4. Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol — December 16, 2011
5. Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation — July 31, 2015
6. Mission: Impossible – Fallout — July 27, 2018
7. Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One — July 12, 2023
8. Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part Two — June 28, 2024
Watching the Mission: Impossible Movies in chronological order is essential to enjoy a huge variety of incredibly daring stunts, some memorable, scenery-chewing villains, and all manner of sneaky deceptions involving rubber masks. The order in which you do these things is up to you now, luckily, chronologically and by release date are the same. But when we watch it, we prefer to do so in order.
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