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The Mission: Impossible films ranked from worst to best according to fans

It's been over two decades since Tom Cruise first played Ethan Hunt

Which Mission: Impossible movie is most beloved by moviegoers. (Paramount)
Which Mission: Impossible movie is most beloved by moviegoers. (Paramount)

Tom Cruise be back as Ethan Hunt in Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One — in cinemas and IMAX from 10 July — so what better way to celebrate the iconic film franchise than to look back at it?

Critics have their opinion on the movies, and some have already shared their thoughts on Dead Reckoning Part One, but what about what the fans thought?

So, Yahoo UK decided it was time to find out.

Our mission? To discover what fans thought of the Mission: Impossible franchise and how they have ranked each film on IMDb.

We chose to accept.

As Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One is not out yet, this ranking will not include the film or its forthcoming sequel. Not yet anyway.

Here is how the franchise ranked amongst fans, and what rating they received.

Mission: Impossible II (2000)

Mission: Impossible 2 (Credit: Paramount)
Thandiwe Newton and Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible 2 (Paramount)

Ah, the eternal struggle for a sequel to reach the same dizzying heights as its original. The second Mission: Impossible sadly failed to do so according to fans, because it not only ranked lower than the 1996 original on IMDb it is also ranked last overall within the franchise.

Read more: Tom Cruise offers behind the scenes look at unique latest Mission: Impossible car chase

Directed by John Woo, the 2000 film saw Ethan Hunt go after IMF agent Sean Ambrose (Dougray Scott), who is attempting to steal a deadly virus in order to start a pandemic and then sell the antidote to the highest bidder. Hunt goes after the rogue agent with the help of Nyah Nordoff-Hall (Thandiwe Newton), a professional thief and Ambrose's former lover.

Mission: Impossible II may rank last on IMDb but when it was originally released it was a huge commercial success, becoming the highest grossing film of the year after taking in $546m worldwide.

IMDb rating: 6.1

Mission: Impossible III (2006)

Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, Ving Rhames, Tom Cruise and Maggie Q in a still from <i>Mission: Impossible 3<i>. (Paramount Pictures)
Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, Ving Rhames, Tom Cruise and Maggie Q in Mission: Impossible 3. (Paramount Pictures)

The third Mission: Impossible film comes next in the franchise's raking on IMDb, with fans only giving it a marginally better rating than its predecessor, which is a huge shame as JJ Abrams' directorial debut is a lean, mean, thrill ride and marked improvement over John Woo's film.

Mission: Impossible III sees Hunt heads a new Impossible Mission Forces (IMF) team in order to go up against Owen Davian (Phillip Seymour Hoffman), an arms dealer who is seeking out a mysterious biological hazard known as "The Rabbit's Foot".

Davian is the series' best villain to date, and while it may lack a headline-grabbing stunt, this was the film that cemented the franchise's winning formula for the future.

IMDb rating: 6.9

Mission: Impossible (1996)

Tom Cruise Film: Mission: Impossible (1996) Characters: ETHAN HUNT  Director: Brian De Palma 22 May 1996   **WARNING** This Photograph is for editorial use only and is the copyright of PARAMOUNT PICTURES and/or the Photographer assigned by the Film or Production Company and can only be reproduced by publications in conjunction with the promotion of the above Film. A Mandatory Credit To PARAMOUNT PICTURES is required. The Photographer should also be credited when known. No commercial use can be granted without written authority from the Film Company.
Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible (Alamy)

The one that started it all, Brian De Palma's Mission: Impossible may have introduced the world to Ethan Hunt but the paranoid thriller only managed to get a middling ranking amongst fans on IMDb.

In the original, Cruise's character is framed for the murder of his IMF team following a disastrous operation in Prague to find a mole in the agency. Going on the run, Hunt decides to find the real culprit and the mysterious "Max" in order to clear his name.

Despite being the first film in the franchise, according to fans the more recent films in the series are better.

IMDb rating: 7.1

Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (2011)

Tom Cruise plays Ethan Hunt in MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE – GHOST PROTOCOL, from Paramount Pictures and Skydance Productions.
Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (Alamy)

Ghost Protocol and Rogue Nation, the fourth and fifth films in the franchise, received the same rating amongst fans on IMDb, 7.4 out of 10.

Read more: Tom Cruise's 10 best movies

The 2011 film sees Hunt and the IMF be framed for a bombing in the Kremlin which leads to the agency being shut down entirely. With no resources to rely on, Hunt and his team embark on a dangerous mission to clear their names.

In a bid to make things bigger and better, Cruise embarked on some of his most daring stunt work in the film including scaling the side of Dubai skyscraper the Burj Khalifa.

IMDb rating: 7.4

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (2015)

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - ROGUE NATION (2015)  REBECCA FERGUSON, TOM CRUISE  CHRISTOPHER MCQUARRIE (DIR)
Rebecca Ferguson and Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (Alamy)

As mentioned, Rogue Nation ranks the same on IMDb as Ghost Protocol with a rating of 7.4. It is also marks the first collaboration between Cruise and director Christopher McQuarrie who has gone on to helm every Mission: Impossible film since including the two Dead Reckoning films.

The fifth film in the franchise sees Hunt go up against The Syndicate, a group of rogue agents who have compromised the IMF and may lead to its disbandment. Determined to stop this from happening, Hunt and his team set out to prove the existence of The Syndicate before it's too late.

Read more: Tom Cruise’s biggest and most daring stunts

Rogue Nation features some of the franchise's biggest stunts, including Cruise hanging onto the side of a plane as it is taking off.

IMDb rating: 7.4

Mission Impossible - Fallout (2018)

Mission: Impossible – Fallout is an upcoming American action spy film written, directed and co-produced by Christopher McQuarrie. It is the sixth installment in the Mission: Impossible film series and stars Tom Cruise, Rebecca Ferguson, Ving Rhames, Simon Pegg, Michelle Monaghan, Alec Baldwin and Sean Harris.  This photograph is for editorial use only and is the copyright of the film company and/or the photographer assigned by the film or production company and can only be reproduced by publications in conjunction with the promotion of the above Film. A Mandatory Credit to the film company is
Rebecca Ferguson and Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible – Fallout (Paramount Pictures/Alamy)

The franchise's most recent film, Fallout, earned the coveted top spot amongst fans on IMDb for its awe-inspiring action sequences and performances from the cast, but particularly newcomer to the franchise Henry Cavill who plays Special Activities Division agent August Walker.

In the film, a new terrorist organisation comprised of former Syndicate members has risen, and they are hired to acquire plutonium cores for three nuclear bombs. Hunt and his team are tasked with going up against them to recover the plutonium before it's too late.

IMDb rating: 7.7

Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One is in cinemas and IMAX from 10 July.

The Mission: Impossible films are streaming on Paramount+ and NOW with a Sky Cinema Membership

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Watch the trailer for Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning part one