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Mission: Impossible 2

Movie review by
Nell Minow, Common Sense Media
Mission: Impossible 2 Movie Poster Image
Good thrill ride of a movie with nonstop action.
  • PG-13
  • 2000
  • 123 minutes

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 8 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 26 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

The IMF forces with honorable intentions and great courage once again defeat a formidable enemy. Good triumphs over evil.

Positive Role Models & Representations

To foil the greedy, power-hungry villains, the heroes are strong, brave, loyal, passionate, and honor-bound. One leading member of the team is known to be a thief, but is redeemed by her self-sacrifice and grace under pressure.


Almost continuous action and violence beginning with a harrowing plane crash and explosion in which everyone aboard is killed. That is soon followed by a sequence that shows scary images of cell destruction caused by a deadly virus. The film's hero is a one man army, punching, using martial arts, driving skills, gunfire, and athleticism (including dangling from a sheer precipice) to fend off dozens of villains. Bodies fly; vehicles explode; automatic weapons are fired; a man’s fingertip is cut off using a cigar clipper. There are point-blank shootings, flame throwers, lengthy hand-to-hand combat sequences, and high speed chases with careening, crashing vehicles.


Playful sexual innuendo when two characters are forced to hide in a bathtub together. Very soon afterward, they kiss passionately, start to undress, then are seen in post-sexual cuddling with only bare shoulders visible. More embraces and kisses follow as the relationship intensifies. It is implied that the film’s heroine will voluntarily resume a former sexual affair in order to trap a villain.


Infrequent swearing including: "s--t," "ass," "bitch," "damn," "hell," and "bastard."


Bulgari brand is visible. The franchise has a heavy marketing component.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Mission: Impossible 2 is as action-packed and suspense-filled as the original film, though it's far more brutal. Characters are dispatched using an amazing assortment of weaponry, skills, and derring-do: knives, automatic weapons, plane crashes, falls from steep cliffs, vicious hand-to-hand combat, martial arts, explosions, flame throwers, and the devastatingly visual of a virus slowly destroying a human body. In most instances, however, an effort is made to keep the gore and carnage off camera, so while bodies fly and things explode, the audience is not exposed to the grisly aftermath. There is some sexuality with kissing, mild foreplay, partial undressing, and post-sexual cuddling. Some swearing ("bitch," "ass," "damn") is heard infrequently.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byHeroneSilverton April 9, 2008

Not as good as the first...

I've read a lot of bad reviews about this movie, and wasn't expecting too much in this movie. Admittedly, it was a lot better than I expected. Though... Continue reading
Adult Written byAshnak April 9, 2008


It is unbelievable. The first movie had Tom Cruise in it. This movie IS just Tom Cruise.
Kid, 12 years old January 31, 2010

Not As Good As The First One!

It's okay but it isn't as good as the first one. can't wait to see the third one.
Teen, 16 years old Written byMr581 August 2, 2009

What's the story?

MISSION IMPOSSIBLE 2 is the essence of a summer movie: gorgeous stars, sensational stunts, nerve-wracking chases, steamy romance, some "gotcha" plot twists, and lots of explosions. This time, agent Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) has to retrieve the secret formula to a virus that could destroy humankind. Hunt's task won't be easy – the virus has been stolen by his former colleague Sean Ambrose (Dougray Scott) who knows all his tricks. As Hunt's boss (an unbilled Anthony Hopkins) says, "It's not Mission Difficult; it's Mission Impossible." He must persuade his girlfriend (and jewel thief) Nyah (Thandie Newton) to get romantically involved with her ex-flame, Ambrose.

Is it any good?

This is a terrific thrill ride of a movie, and Cruise just keeps getting better. The first film in the series was a huge success, but most viewers thought that the real mission impossible was trying to understand the plot; with Mission: Impossible 2, they make it simple so we can just sit back and enjoy. Ving Rhames returns as the world's least geeky computer genius, but aside from a couple of impeccably delivered lines, he never gets a chance to show us what he can do. Hunt is more like loner James Bond than he is like MI's Jim Phelps. But that's a small point.

Director John Woo's trademarks are all here -- the hero sliding across the floor in slow motion, firing two guns at once, the balletic combat, the villain's streak of sadism, and an engaging willingness to tweak, even spoof, his own conventions. Unfortunately the movie leaves out the best part of the original Mission: Impossible concept, back in the days of the TV show, and that was teamwork. It was a lot of fun to see how the special expertise of each of the MI team members was going to come in handy.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about what makes an action movie good. Is it the special effects? The acting? The story? Why do some action movies stand the test of time while others are simply awful?

  • What role does violence play in a film like Mission: Impossible 2? Does its glossy nature distract from the brutality on the screen? Is it glamorized? Do different types of movie violence have different impact on kids?

Movie details

For kids who love action and thrills

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