‘M:I-2‘ as it was officially titled is probably the worst of the Mission Impossible films but thats not to say that its bad. Its just that John Woo’s direction of the sequel grates with me a bit because of all the ridiculous acrobatics, somersaults and slo-mo action scenes.
A lot of the movie was filmed in New South Wales (NSW), particularly in Sydney and it starts straight away with the camera panning over the Opera House (below left) and on to Biocyte Pharmaceuticals which in reality is Governor Phillip Tower (below right). It can be found in the north-east area of the Central Business District (CBD) at 29/1 Farrer Place, Sydney NSW 2000.
Argyll Street in The Rocks (below) doubles up as Seville in Spain and is where Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) meets Nyah (Thandie Newton). During filming the street was totally transformed with dust added to the streets and passionate music playing whilst a religious procession took place.
The Spanish driveway scene in “Seville” on 17 mins was shot at Boomerang Mansion (above) at 42 Billyard Avenue in Elizabeth Bay. This three storey mansion has been described as the oldest and finest example of Spanish architecture in Australia and is private property so the only view I could really get of it was from Beare Park.
On 34 mins the beautiful Nyah is driven under Sydney Harbour Bridge on the boat which takes her to villain Sean Ambrose’s apartment which was located at Bradley Head on Mosman and can be seen after 36 mins and again on 42 mins. The apartment was just a set prop so I didn’t feel it too necessary to take a boat over to Mosman instead settling for a long distance view (lower right) of it taken from one of the towers on the bridge.
Broken Hill in the far west outback of NSW appears on 35 mins as the remote sheep station where Hunt meets up with his team; the Aussie pilot and the computer expert.
46 mins in and we see Royal Randwick Racecourse. This is the type of place I wouldn’t bother with usually when hunting down filming locations but as I was staying 5 minutes walk away at my friends house I jumped at the chance of seeing it. The course is undergoing a bit of reconstruction at the moment which probably worked in my favour as it meant it was open and I could just walk in and take the photos below.
The screenshots (below) are of Darling Harbour; the location featured on 86 mins where Ambrose parks up and shows the virus in the test-tube to Nyah leading her to slap him and is then left to wander the streets of Sydney in a daze having previously injected herself with the virus to stop him killing her to get it. I had planned to go here but ultimately ran out of time and considered it low priority as it was a little out of the way from all the other areas of Sydney I was concentrating on on this trip.
The most interesting filming location from M:I-2 has to be Bare Island in La Peruse down in Bottany Bay which makes its big screen debut at the 87 minute mark. The place where Cruise climbs up the cliff face is on the left side near to the back and is usually just a place for fishermen to dip their tackle in and see what bites. The tower with all the satellite dishes on it was a prop added to the island by the producers.
This island fortress is Ambrose’s bunker headquarters where his transition with Biocyte’s CEO takes place. Cruise rides his motorcycle through balls of fire in what is perhaps the most iconic scene from the whole movie. Its certainly the one which is seen on most posters or pictures relating to the film. The little castle looking building (above right) can be seen 104 mins in as a fairly lengthy motorcycle chase seemingly goes round in circles and doesn’t actually go as far as it would appear on screen. It can be seen in the top of the picture (lower left) which shows how close it is to the point where Hunt escapes from the fort.
The film ends in the Royal Botanic Gardens (below) by the Opera House on 117 mins with the two heroes kissing and walking off arm in arm through the place as we get a final aerial view of Sydneys two most famous landmarks.
Want to see more Mission Impossible filming locations? If so, then check out:
London Filming Locations: Mission Impossible (1996) – click here.
Prague Filming Locations: Mission Impossible (1996) – click here.
Caserta (Italy) Filming Locations: Mission Impossible III (2006) – click here.