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Last week the “Mission: Impossible” franchise saw its biggest opening ever — $61.2 million — with the release of its sixth film, “Fallout.” The action blockbuster’s first installment hit screens in 1996, and for more than 20 years the series has served to showcase the gravity-defying acrobatic abilities of lead star Tom Cruise.

Cruise, 56, plays Ethan Hunt, a field agent for a fictional U.S. intelligence agency who has battled terrorists, rogue agents and evildoers on a global scale. “Fallout” shows Hunt at his most vulnerable, a bit sentimental and more inclined to ask for help — provided it comes from his friends.

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