Even during rehearsals, everyone could see that "Peter Pan, IT Consultant" would be a Broadway flop.


Even during rehearsals, everyone could see that "Peter Pan, IT Consultant" would be a Broadway flop.

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE

The Abridged Script

FADE IN:

INT. PLANE

JON VOIGHT, having already flipped his coin and determined that this will not be one of his BATSHIT CRAZY PERFORMANCES, is sitting on a plane when he is approached by the flight attendant.

FLIGHT ATTENDANT

Can I get you anything? Drink? Pillow? Highly classified spy briefing that you’ll watch here on this regular plane, so that any random schmuck walking up the aisle could get a glimpse of the names and faces of top-secret operatives?

JON VOIGHT

Fine, but next time maybe instead of spending a few hours editing together a whole video presentation and then sneaking it aboard a plane via a specially-planted flight attendant, IMF could just send a guy to talk to me for two minutes in the airport parking garage. Just saying, these are tax payers' dollars here.

JON puts on the TAPE.

HENRY CZERNY

(narrating video)

Greetings, Jon. Your mission, should you choose to accept it - hey, am I the only one who always found that “should you choose to accept it” bit weird? Can government agents straight-up tell their superiors “Nope, not doing that. Get me a mission with submarines, I’m in a submariney mood”?

(awkward pause)

Well anyway, a corrupt agent called Marcel Iures is planning to sell the NOC List, a consolidated list of the names of every single American secret agent in the field, which, why the hell do we even have such a thing? He’s gotten the half of the list with the agents’ code names, but it’s useless without the matching list of real names. Mostly because, if these movies are anything to go by, nobody in this universe has actually used a code name ever under any circumstances.

(pause)

Your team will consist of Tom Cruise, your disturbingly young and hot wife Emmanuelle Béart, Kristin Scott “not famous yet” Thomas, Emilio “not famous anymore” Estevez, and Ingeborga Dapkunaite, which I’ve spell-checked six times and it still looks wrong. Only Tom is in any of the other movies, so anyone watching this movie out of order just got a MASSIVE fucking spoiler. This message will self-destruct in five seconds.

The TAPE just sort of QUIETLY COMBUSTS, to the disappointment of INSPECTOR GADGET FANS EVERYWHERE.

INT. PRAGUE HOTEL ROOM

JON is going over the plan with TOM, EMMANUELLE, KRISTIN, EMILIO and INGEBORGA.

JON VOIGHT

We just have to film Marcel swiping the file, tail him to the buyer, then arrest them both. Pretty straightforward. Straightforward enough that maybe calling in the “Impossible Mission Force” was a touch of overkill, but the “Piss-Easy Mission Force” was busy.

TOM CRUISE

Excuse me, it says here this super-sensitive ultra-mega-classified CIA file is being stored on an ordinary desktop PC in the basement of some Czech mansion. I was just wondering: what the random fuck?

EMMANUELLE BÉART

Yeah, did the CIA put it there? If so, how come we need an elaborate plan full of hacking and disguises just to get a camera in that room? Wouldn’t a bit of inter-departmental cooperation have made more sense?

KRISTIN SCOTT THOMAS

Or if it wasn’t put there by the CIA, who? Bad guys? Was the file already stolen and now it’s being double-stolen? Seriously, this almost seems like a completely half-assed fake mission intended to fool us into-

JON VOIGHT

Please don’t finish that thought. Tom, you’ll be going in disguised as a US senator.

TOM CRUISE

How could it possibly help our covert op for me to go in as a celebrity and make myself as noticeable as possible?

JON VOIGHT

I don’t know, but the guy happens to already look like you wearing ten pounds of horrible latex, so it seemed like too neat an opportunity to pass up. All right, Emilio, do the Q briefing.

EMILIO ESTEVEZ

All right, see this chewing gum? If you come across a lock you can’t pick, just mash it together and it explodes.

TOM CRUISE

(blinks)

What? We’ve already planned out the entirety of this simple operation, there’s no conceivable reason for me to ever need to pick a lock, let alone blow one open.

EMILIO ESTEVEZ

Well maybe you might find some other uses for it at some other important plot moments, if you catch my drift.

TOM CRUISE

Ahhh, got it. Chekov’s Gum.

INT. MANSION

TOM enters the PARTY, disguised as the CORPSE of a WAX DUMMY.

KRISTIN SCOTT THOMAS

I’ve been establishing myself here for the past week, so the idea is that I’m giving you a tour. A tour which includes, naturally, the completely restricted secret basement protected by fingerprint scanners and armed guards.

TOM CRUISE

I’m guessing Emilio hacked in and forged fingerprint access to the elevator for you at some point of that entire week?

KRISTIN SCOTT THOMAS

That would have been the smart thing to do, but to create some extra tension he’s instead sitting on top of the elevator frantically trying to do it right now. And for even MORE fake tension, let’s not wait for him to let us know he’s finished, and instead head over and try and get into the elevator while it’s only halfway hacked.

They go to the ELEVATOR, which finally gives them ACCESS after a SUSPICIOUSLY LONG TIME, then they head and place a HIDDEN CAMERA in the BASEMENT. But then MARCEL calls the ELEVATOR while they’re still DOWN THERE.

KRISTIN SCOTT THOMAS

Shit! Even though me bringing you down here as part of your “tour” is in fact what we’re openly claiming has happened, we can’t let Marcel see us down here for some reason!

JON VOIGHT

(on radio)

Hold on, I’ll open the elevator doors and you can hide underneath the elevator when Marcel comes down.

EMILIO ESTEVEZ

Wait, you’ve remotely hacked the elevator from our hotel room? What the fuck am I even here for then?

TOM CRUISE

An even bigger question is, if Emilio was able to just sneak into the elevator shaft, and Jon can open the elevator doors to the basement, wouldn’t that have been a much simpler way of breaking into the basement in the first place? This entire plan is so needlessly convoluted.

They film MARCEL stealing the FILE, and prepare to tail him to his BUYER. But then everything starts to go COMPLETELY TO SHIT.

EMILIO ESTEVEZ

Hey, my elevator is moving up by itself. It’s gonna smoosh me against the ceiling! I better drop through the service hatch into the elevator-

(no hatch)

Oh shit. All right, it’s fine, just a few minutes I was able to avoid the descending elevator by pressing myself into a hollow against the wall-

(you’ve forgotten you can do that I guess)

Damnit.

(crushed)

JON VOIGHT

(on radio)

We’re compromised! I’ve fled the hotel and now I’m being chased by somebody, not that the camera will even show my alleged pursuer from behind or in shadow. Nor can you hear footsteps. Everybody just take my word for it. Mission abort! Cease radio communication!

(is shot)

Ack! Tom, did you get that? Did you see the footage I just transmitted, of a gun firing at me? It’s important to me that you see that, so you better not have ceased radio communication for some crazy reason!

TOM CRUISE

Yeah, I saw it. Even in that two seconds of footage, it looked exactly like you were pointing the gun at yourself. Are we all just meant to pretend we didn’t notice that?

JON VOIGHT

If you don’t mind.

(falls into river)

KRISTIN SCOTT THOMAS

I’m tailing Marcel, and he just got stabbed by somebody through a wrought-iron gate! Fortunately the stabby guy can’t reach me unless I walk right up to the gate myself, say THERE’S an idea

(stabbed)

INGEBORGA DAPKUNAITE

Well if they’re onto us and they’re trying to wipe us out, surely I can trust our car to be a hundred per cent safe!

(blown up)

And just assume for the moment that Emmanuelle was in here with me, even though we never gave you any reason to think that was the case.

TOM CRUISE

Damnit! Well, when they get round to killing me and I reset the day, I'll make sure I warn everyone - oh wait, wrong movie.

(runs)

INT. RESTAURANT/AQUARIUM

TOM arranges a meet with HENRY.

HENRY CZERNY

All right, I’m going to keep this as simple as I can, because this is the point of the movie where about two-thirds of the audience starts to completely lose track of what the hell is happening. We’ve got a leak in IMF. Someone’s been selling secrets to a mysterious weapons dealer named Max.

TOM CRUISE

So the only thing we have on this individual is a stereotypically masculine but actually gender-neutral name? I can’t imagine what the big surprise about “him” will be.

HENRY CZERNY

Investigating the mole, we narrowed it down to somebody in Jon’s team. We made up a fake mission with a fake NOC List, hoping the mole would try and swipe the list for themselves and sell it to Max, at which point we could arrest them both. And wouldn’t you know it, you’re the only one of your team still alive.

TOM CRUISE

You’ve confirmed that, have you? You got a report of two corpses in the exploded car? Jon’s body was retrieved from that placid river?

HENRY CZERNY

Okay, so MAYBE we haven’t accounted for two of the bodies, and those two happen to be the guy who planned this entire operation and his wife. But screw it, we’re still gonna just blame it all on you.

TOM CRUISE

I see. In that case, might I suggest that next time you and a bunch of your fellow agents have your key suspect surrounded, you might want to seize him instead of chit-chatting? That way you could make sure he doesn’t have a bunch of exploding gum in his pocket.

HENRY CZERNY

Oh. I don’t suppose it’s too late to-

TOM blows up the AQUARIUM and escapes in the ensuing chaos.

BUNCH OF INNOCENT FISH

HUURRK, CAN’T BREATHE, WHY DID YOU DO IT TOOOOM

(dies)

TOM CRUISE

All right, where to now? The only place I have any resources in this city is in our team’s hotel room. And since the IMF will be surely be searching that place for clues within the hour, I’d have to be a total idiot to go there.

(is total idiot)

Oh, in that case I might as well just make that my base of operations for the next several days.

INT. PRAGUE HOTEL ROOM

TOM starts trying to figure out how to find MAX and the MOLE.

TOM CRUISE

Hmm, let’s see what leads I can find using the magical new resource known as the world wide web. Let’s try searching for “MAX.COM”, which, wow. When moviegoers become wise in the ways of the internet, that’s going to look SO FUCKING RIDICULOUS.

Having no luck, TOM falls back on the reliable old movie technique of LOOKING AROUND THE ROOM for RANDOM INSPIRATION.

TOM CRUISE

Oh look, a bible. Say, Henry said an intercepted comminique between Max and the mole mentioned something called “Job 314”. What if that was really “Job 3:14”? So I’ll just go to a Book of Job chatroom and leave a message for Max, and hey presto!

(pause)

Did our entire intelligence network network not figure that out? Seriously, that took me like three minutes.

Suddenly EMMANUELLE shows up!

TOM CRUISE

Emmanuelle! You’re alive inexplicably! Henry said the mole was somebody on our team and you’re still alive with no explanation! I’ll go ahead and not read anything into that.

EMMANUELLE BÉART

And now that I’m here I’ll help you find the mole. To begin with, I’ll do almost nothing; then as the situation evolves, I’ll continue to do almost nothing.

They get a response from MAX, who arranges a meet with TOM.

INT. MAX’S PAD

TOM is brought blindfolded to MAX’S PLACE, where it turns out MAX is VANESSA REDGRAVE.

TOM CRUISE

OMG it’s actually a woman what a twist.

(yawns)

Look, the NOC List disk the mole gave you is a fake that undoubtedly will broadcast your location to IMF as soon as you try to use it.

VANESSA REDGRAVE

Considering the mole only gets paid if the disk proves genuine, and I’d presumably spill everything I have on him if I’m captured, one has to wonder why the fuck he gave me the thing in the first place.

TOM CRUISE

You want the real NOC List? I’ll steal it from Langley for you if you tell me who the mole is.

VANESSA REDGRAVE

How the hell can I trust you on this? What’s to prevent you from just giving me a made-up list of fake names?

TOM CRUISE

We’re just making the vague and puzzling assertion that you have some way of testing the list for accuracy, otherwise there’d be no reason for me to not do exactly that.

INT. TRAIN

TOM and EMMANUELLE have assembled a team including HACKER VING RHAMES and PSYCHO JEAN RENO.

TOM CRUISE

The computer we need to break into in Langley is in an isolated vault protected by two doors with voice recognition and an optical scanner and key cards and a moat with electric eels and a minotaur et cetera et cetera.

VING RHAMES

I assume there’s also a convenient ventilation shaft with your standard giant man-sized ductwork?

TOM CRUISE

Indeed. But even after we get into the shaft and bypass the laser grid on the grate, there are three layers of security on the vault whenever the operator is out of the room: highly sensitive pressure plates on the floor, a sound detector, and a temperature monitor which it’s never entirely clear how we fool it. Setting any of these off will trigger the alarm.

VING RHAMES

You know what else would have been a good idea for something that’d trigger the alarm? Somebody TRYING TO USE THE COMPUTER. Hell, why even have the computer be useable at all while the room is in lockdown?

TOM CRUISE

Look, this is going to be the one thing people remember from this movie, so we’re going to make it happen, logic or no.

VING RHAMES

Fine. How do we get in there?

TOM CRUISE

Well, have you seen either of Jules Dassin’s heist movies?

VING RHAMES

No.

TOM CRUISE

Great. Let’s hope the audience hasn’t either.

INT. LANGLEY

TOM and JEAN manage to sneak into the VENTS.

TOM CRUISE

All right, deploy the precise mechanized device for refracting the laser grid!

JEAN RENO

Deployed!

TOM CRUISE

Now activate the complex rig that unscrews the grate from the opposite side somehow and catches the screws in a little screw-catching arm!

JEAN RENO

Where the fuck did we get all this incredibly specific, customized equipment? Do we have an invisible mechanical engineer on our team or something?

They remove the GRATE and JEAN lowers TOM into the VAULT on a ROPE. TOM starts copying the NOC LIST to a DISK, but then JEAN is distracted by a RAT!

JEAN RENO

What the hell? We needed fake alarms and fireman costumes and unconscious guards to get into this secure and inaccessible vent! How the hell is random wildlife wandering in?

He kills the RAT, but winds up dropping TOM, only catching the rope again when TOM is about FOUR NANOMETERS from the PRESSURE PLATES! As TOM flails wildly, a bead of SWEAT slides down his GLASSES, but he manages to CATCH IT before it lands on the FLOOR.

TOM CRUISE

Phew, that was close! That tiny droplet would have set off the pressure sensors. Which is weird considering the huge WHUMPH of displaced air from my fall wasn’t enough to do it.

They finish the file transfer and JEAN pulls TOM out of the VAULT. The rope, having slipped off its pulley, makes a very loud scraping sound which registers as “too fucking loud, we’re screwed” on TOM’S SOUND METER, but the alarm doesn’t go off anyway because apparently that SOUND DETECTION ALARM was just so much BULLSHIT.

EXT. TRAIN STATION

TOM is out making ARRANGEMENTS for the MEET with VANESSA, when who should greet him but a still-alive JON!

TOM CRUISE

Holy shit, if Jon’s not dead then HE must be the mole! He faked his own death to frame me, and now he’s revealed himself to me so that... uh... for the purpose of... help me out here.

JON VOIGHT

Hey, don’t look at me, I don’t think it makes the damnedest bit of sense. But hey, at least fans of the TV show can rest easy that we didn’t kill off the beloved character Jim Phelps after all! We just made him into an evil murdering bastard. Who is undoubtedly going to be killed off.

TOM CRUISE

Well I guess now that I know who the mole is I don’t need to give the NOC List to Vanessa. I just gotta subdue an old man, get him to the authorities, then tell them where the arms dealer will be waiting to meet with me, and hey presto.

JON VOIGHT

Sure, sure, you could do that. But instead you’re going to keep on with the plan so you can get a chance to find out whether Emmanuelle was in on this the whole time.

TOM CRUISE

What? I just a second ago figured out that Jean must have been the guy you had stab Kristin, and Emmanuelle was the one who brought Jean onto our heist team, for fuck’s sake! Unless that’s all a gigantic coincidence, OBVIOUSLY she’s evil too!

JON VOIGHT

Yeah, but you still need solid proof because apparently you have a boner for her emaciated, badly-acted ass.

TOM CRUISE

So I’ll risk handing the identities of all our agents to an evil arms dealer on the off chance I get to bang my mentor’s wife? Some hero I am.

INT. TRAIN

TOM hands VANESSA the NOC LIST aboard a moving BULLET TRAIN.

VANESSA REDGRAVE

Why the hell did I ever agree to this meet? My whole thing has been extreme caution, where I carefully control when and where anybody gets to see me. Now suddenly I agree to somebody else’s demands that I sit in a specific seat at a specific time, inside an inescapable metal tube? Whatever, your payment’s in the baggage car, I’m sure Jon will be there directly to rob and kill you.

TOM CRUISE

Well then, good thing I have my trusty lack of any kind of weapon!

INT. BAGGAGE CAR

EMMANUELLE comes into the BAGGAGE CAR to talk to JON, who is sitting and staring wordlessly at her.

EMMANUELLE BÉART

Hey Jon, who I have known all along is alive, do we really need to go through with our current plan of murdering Tom? I still prefer our earlier plan of just framing him. I was TOTALLY complicit in that plan, as you know.

Suddenly JON pulls off his MASK, revealing it’s actually TOM!

EMMANUELLE BÉART

Oh bullSHIT. At what point were you able to craft an elaborate Jon Voight mask without my noticing?

Then the REAL JON shows up, pointing his gun at TOM.

TOM CRUISE

Nice try, but I’m secretly broadcasting footage of this to Henry. Now he knows you’re alive, so no doubt he and his men are going to storm the baggage car any second now and I’ll have won!

(pause)

Any second now.

(pause)

What the hell, Henry?

JON VOIGHT

What, you thought this was going to be a straight espionage thriller without a single action scene whatsoever? This is a summer blockbuster, we’ve got to have at least ONE loud, stupid pile of special effects and explosions.

TOM CRUISE

Fine. To make this interesting, let’s have a competition to see who can lobotomize this movie the most.

JON VOIGHT

You’re on!

(movie IQ: Robert Ludlum)

For starters, I’ll shoot Emmanuelle but NOT you, then climb up to the roof, to try and make an insane train-to-helicopter transfer and escape!

TOM CRUISE

(movie IQ: mediocre episode of Burn Notice)

Pfft, that’s small potatoes. I’m going to tie that helicopter to the train, forcing Jean to pilot the chopper INSIDE THE FUCKING CHUNNEL WHILE BEING TOWED BY THE BULLET TRAIN AT 160MPH.

JEAN RENO

(movie IQ: Transporter sequel)

I can one-up that by continuing to maintain control of the helicopter while a SECOND train goes past in the opposite direction, boxing me in even further and causing God knows how much wind turbulence!

TOM CRUISE

(movie IQ: Steven Seagal vehicle)

Oh, you want to play? Let’s play.

He JUMPS from the TRAIN to the HELICOPTER, mashes some EXPLODING GUM on the HELICOPTER’S WINDSHIELD, jumps back OFF the helicopter and then the FIREBALL PROPELLS HIM SAFELY BACK ONTO THE SPEEDING TRAIN.

TOM CRUISE

(movie IQ: Mission: Impossible II)

WOOO! Movie so dumb now me are forget how word use!

EXT. CAFE

After VANESSA has been ARRESTED and TOM has been EXONERATED, he and VING share a celebratory coffee.

VING RHAMES

As the only other person from either of the spy teams from this movie who is still alive, I’d just like to say congratulations! Also, keep the hell away from me, you fucking jinx.

(flees)

TOM CRUISE

Wait, we’re done? Awesome! We got all the way through an abridged script of one of my movies without making any jokes about you-know-what! See you round, folks!

HENRY CZERNY

Say, Tom.

TOM CRUISE

Uh oh.

HENRY CZERNY

I know you said you weren’t coming back to IMF, but we’ve decided to go ahead and drop a new mission briefing in your lap without even consulting you. Cause why wouldn’t we give classified intel to a bitter and dangerous former employee?

TOM CRUISE

Don’t you fucking dare, man. It was over! I was free!

HENRY CZERNY

Now, it might seem psychotic for our organization to just plain not let its members leave, even after we’ve completely abused and maltreated them.

TOM CRUISE

THE END! FADE TO BLACK!

HENRY CZERNY

But hey, at least IMF isn’t as difficult to get away from as the Church of Scien-

TOM CRUISE

FFFUUUUUUCK YYYOOOOOUUUUU

END.

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