Back to IndieWire

There’s Real Math to Prove That Tom Cruise Movies Are Better When He Runs in Them

Rotten Tomatoes crunched the numbers.

Tom Cruise running

Tom Cruise is in on the joke. The actor’s Twitter bio notes that he’s been “running in movies since 1981,” and indeed it’s what he’s best known for doing onscreen. To mark the release of “Mission: Impossible – Fallout,” the folks at Rotten Tomatoes have put together a study suggesting that, the more Cruise runs in his movies, the better they are.

They did so using what sounds like painstaking methodology, counting “every instance of Cruise’s running on screen, in seconds, and then calculated the distances ran by assuming he is clocking a six-minute mile (14.6 feet per second).”

The average Tomatometer of movies in which Cruise doesn’t run at all — and there are only four, namely “Magnolia,” “Lions for Lambs,” “Tropic Thunder,” and “Valkyrie” — is a respectable 63.5%. Those in which he runs anywhere from one to 500 feet (of which there are 20, including everything from “Risky Business” to “Interview With the Vampire”) are a little bit lower, at 61.05%; clocking in ever-so-slightly higher are the eight films in which he covers between 501 and 1,000 feet, which average out to 61.625%.

Then comes the good stuff. The nine films that find their star going “Full Tom” (1,001+ feet) jump up to 71%, which is to say that three “M:I” movies, “Minority Report,” and “The Firm” rank among Cruise’s best-reviewed efforts.

Remarkably, the study also found that the 56-year-old Oscar nominee has been running more as he’s gotten older. Here are the full results of RT’s findings, and here are the 10 movies in which Cruise runs the most

  1. “Mission: Impossible III” — 3,212 feet
  2. “Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol” — 3,066 feet
  3. “War of the Worlds” — 1,752 feet
  4. “Minority Report” — 1,562 feet
  5. “The Firm” — 1,241 feet
  6. “Edge of Tomorrow” — 1,065 feet
  7. “Jack Reacher: Never Go Back” — 1,051 feet
  8. “The Mummy” — 1,022 feet
  9. “Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation” — 1,007 feet
  10. “Vanilla Sky” — 832 feet

Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: Film and tagged , ,

Get The Latest IndieWire Alerts And Newsletters Delivered Directly To Your Inbox