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How To Become A Real, Live Action Hero - In 5 Easy Steps

Tom Cruise is back as Ethan Hunt for his most impossible mission yet: successfully refire a spy franchise that’s been dormant for five years. In Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, Hunt and his team are disavowed by the U.S. government after being framed for an attack on the Kremlin during a mission gone wrong. And with their agency shut down, the rogue IMF squad is left to fend for itself as its members must hunt down a madman (Michael Nyqvist) bent on starting a nuclear war.


But while its Bond-like supervillain may not have a particularly creative end game, thanks to director Brad Bird (yes, of Pixar fame) and Cruise, Ghost Protocol is a seriously thrilling and surprisingly satisfying action movie. Even though he comes with more baggage these days than he did with the first Mission: Impossible 15 years ago, Cruise proves he still has what it takes to be an action hero.

And since the 49-year-old officially put the rest of us to shame by scaling the world’s tallest building (Dubai’s Burj Khalifa) sans stunt double, we’ve come up with five tips on how to emulate Cruise’s signature super-spy and be an action hero in everyday life. Because it takes more than a pair of Oakleys and a gym membership to earn your own catchy theme song.

5 Have The Proper Eyewear For Every Situation
A major part of being an action hero is being prepared for any situation. And while throwing on a pair of sunglasses is great for when you want to look especially dramatic (or hide your hangover), they’re not a cure-all. Instead, follow Ethan Hunt’s lead and tailor your eyewear to fit your circumstances. Sometimes, that means switching to contacts, like when you need to covertly copy sensitive documents. When those pesky CGI sandstorms pop up, luckily Oakley also makes goggles. Because, while functionality may be paramount, that doesn’t mean you should have to sacrifice style (or opportunities for product placement).

4 Never Look Back
As Andy Samberg once sang, cool guys don’t look at explosions. And while that’s definitely a good mantra to keep in mind, why stop there? Cruise’s Agent Hunt shows it’s possible to take it even further. Because anyone can walk away from an explosion, but in Ghost Protocol, Hunt turns his back on everything from those aforementioned sandstorms to his painful past. Don’t have one? It’s easy enough to fake: The less you say, the better. Just keep quiet and let everyone else fill in the implied silence. And next time you pass an accident, let the rubberneckers gawk and keep going. After all, you’ve got tortured memories to outrun.

3 Use The Latest Technology
From James Bond to Ethan Hunt, action heroes know the importance of having the newest tech, which means that outdated phone you’re still carrying just isn’t going to cut it any more. You don’t need to blow your life savings on a BMW i8 to emulate Cruise, but having the latest gadgets can make you feel like a super-spy even if you can’t throw a punch. With the new smartphones out there, you can track that important, highly sensitive package of yours and ensure it doesn’t fall into the wrong hands, whether it’s nuclear launch codes from Moscow or a mini-doughnut maker from Amazon.

2 Be A Master Of Disguise
When Ethan and his team get burned, they have to be even more covert than usual in order to clear their names and save the world. And whether you’re sneaking into the Kremlin or simply sneaking out of work early, it pays to be stealthy. But while you may not have access to those cool Mission: Impossible rubber masks, you don’t need them. Simply being well-versed in a variety of languages and local customs won’t just aid you in becoming a better, more well-rounded man; it can also help you fit in no matter where your adventures take you.

1 Be Able To Improvise
When things don’t go according to plan, don’t self-destruct. Instead, improvise. Like all the top action heroes, Ethan Hunt is at his best when circumstances are at their worst, making up a plan as he goes. So next time you’re faced with an obstacle, unleash your inner action hero and let your instinct take over. Because sometimes when your high-tech suction gloves malfunction, you just have to run down the side of the tallest building in the world --metaphorically, of course. And even if your improvised plans don’t work perfectly, at least you’ll look cool doing it. So whatever happens, don’t be a slave to routine -- after all, the Mission: Impossible franchise is still going strong largely because, with Ghost Protocol, it’s shown that it’s able to adapt to keep up.

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