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  • VespaMatt
    replied
    @BB I never have perceived Bond as solely an action film. He has always been to me a detective. When you're on 23 films I don't think its really an excuse to say, 'hey, its an action film, cut us some slack'.

    Goldfinger has a really great formula. Bond is assigned to investigate Goldfinger for what is a somewhat minor, domestic problem. Its a slow build up to reveal whats going on. Bond, for instance finds out that Goldfinger is working on a secret 'Project Grand Slam'. Even when Bond is strapped to the table he tries to get this info out of Goldfinger, who doesn't reveal anything but rather taunts him. Later in the film Bond thinks he discovers the plan, to steal all the gold in fort knox. In the end though, close to the finish, the twist is that Goldfinger has no intention to actually steal the gold - he merely plans to kill everyone there and set off a dirty bomb radiating the US's gold supply.

    Its that kind of plot, with slow reveals and twists, that belong in a Bond film. Not something to just string along a series of action scenes - Bond is so much more than that.

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  • VespaMatt
    replied
    ***SPOILERS***

    Agree with you on a lot of those points, Ben. The whole 'I was captured because I wanted to escape' is pretty old hat and, maybe my memory is faulty, but did he even achieve anything with that? He had already hacked into their computers earlier in the film so what did he get out of that? He let himself out but he didn't even disable or cripple the MI6 computers, so that whole section of the film became superflous. Hindsight is 20/20 but there should have been more to why he had to get himself captured - like totally bringing down the governments computers, sending law enforcement or infrastructure into chaos, etc... something that also would have given a better excuse to run away to the lodge and forsake technology.

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  • BB
    replied
    The plot could have been better, I agree, but the things you are pointing out -- these are all formulaic aspects of the action genre, no? I mean, this is better than the usual old action-spy plot (evil guy straps Bond to a killing device, explains his whole plan, and Bond escapes and derails the plan). I'm just trying to say that these frustrating elements are important to an action movie, because explaining things in detail (or taking the time to build character relationships, or making everything work out perfectly) takes away time from what everyone is there to see -- Bond getting in fighting and chase scenes, with some scenes to set up tension thrown in there. I'm all for intelligent film, but I wonder if you're making a genre mistake.

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  • LesserBlackDog
    replied
    I've given it some more thought and I've decided the plot of the film is really, disappointingly weak.

    MORE SPOILERS ALERT




    First of all, the whole "lost list of undercover agent identities" thing has been done before - Mission Impossible immediately comes to mind. And we're never given a reason such a list would exist or why it would be in some guy's laptop in Istanbul. Nor does it make any sense that it would be physically stolen from a laptop when the whole focus of the villain is how he can do anything he wants with the click of a button (i.e. hacking and high tech infiltration). The whole idea of the list is just thrown out there to get things rolling. It doesn't make any sense other than as a plot device.

    Next, the magical bullet fragments that immediately lead us to the assassin Patrice. I mean, come on. Lame on top of lame, not to mention unrealistic.

    Then there's the Patrice-casino-Silva connection. Still weaker. If I'm hiring Patrice to kill someone, I'm not going to hand him a form of currency that leads directly back to me (or to an establishment under my control) in case he is captured or killed. Furthermore, I'm not going to give him his payment before he's even done his job. Arguably Silva did this to lure Bond in. If that's the case, isn't Bond a bit dense for not seeing how obvious a trap it was? Isn't Patrice a bit dense for not realizing he's being used as bait?

    Silva's plan to get caught is pretty obvious from the get-go. Why else would he be captured so easily, so early in the movie? His pre-planned hack into the MI6 computers is pretty obvious as well. If you weren't groaning a little when Q hooked that laptop up to the MI6 computer system right then and there, you weren't paying attention. One of my major pet peeves is when characters in movies get themselves into obvious traps by doing stupid things that the audience can clearly tell is a bad idea. This was a pretty obvious case of that happening.

    And then there's Bond "kidnapping" M to lure Silva. I understand why this occurred from a character development standpoint, but it made very little sense practically. If Bond can communicate enough with MI6 to have them leave unobvious but still detectable "bread crumbs" for Silva to follow, and they have the skills to somehow do that without giving the game away, they could have worked to set up a much better "trap" that doesn't leave Bond and the head of British intelligence all by themselves in the middle of nowhere with an antique rifle and an old gamekeeper to protect them. If Silva had been smarter, he could have just bombed the crap out of the Skyfall manor and been done with it. When Silva was able to find and follow M and the gamekeeper because of their flashlight, that was another one of those "stupid mistakes that the characters should not have made" moments that really irritated me.

    I don't know. I still liked some things about the movie, but the plot itself was not well-done in any sense.

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  • Focuspants
    replied
    I have been watching a lot of the Bond movies lately, and I think the main thing that makes me really like Daniel Craig is the sheer physicality and humanity he brings to the role. He doesnt have a gadget for every situation, and he isnt invincible. I really liked the movie. I think its about on par with Casino Royale for me. I really like Brosnan's Bond as well, but I think that after watching Goldeneye's (which is one of my fav bond movies) opening sequence yesterday where he jumps off the runway cliff with the bike and skydives without a parachute into a falling plane, and relating it to the sheer physicality and more realistic nature of Skyfall and Craig's Bond, I can relate to the new Bond much better.

    Plus I can appreciate his clothing much more now :P

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  • Leslie Chow
    replied
    As a Bond enthusiast, did anyone else notice all the references to previous Bond movies? I mean, the DB5 had the same license plate as Goldfinger along with the same gadgets (machine guns in the same location and the infamous ejector seat) along with Q's little quip about the exploding pen (a nod towards Goldeneye)

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  • Acousticfoodie
    replied
    Being on dappered made me notice Bond's wardrobe a lot more than usual...anyone else?

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  • VespaMatt
    replied
    Just saw Skyfall.

    POSSIBLE SPOILERS ALERT:

    I think I liked it. I didn't dislike it. The PTS was great and the ending was good. The middle, I felt, was a little lacking in a certain degree of discovery. I think a good Bond film requires detective work. We all know that Bond isn't going to die and the day will be saved, so I kind of expect a slow reveal of the villain's master plot or at least some investigation to figure out what hes up to. The course of the film is very linear and there isn't really a lot of mystery - everything is presented with no real twists. A>B>C Everything is a little too convenient and glazed over.

    It was nice to see Bond not going against MI6's orders for once, what was once unique in License to Kill has become sort of cliched with Craig's era, IMO. The final bit, with M, was touching and gave the film a tone that hasn't really been tried since OHMSS and I really appreciated that.

    Style wise, because this is a style site, I liked everything. The use of the tab collars really made sense, keeping everything in place with all the action. Craig's midnight blue tuxedo was sick. And I already knew I loved the lodge outfit - I've picked up both the C&J islays and the Barbour jacket.

    Leave a comment:


  • BB
    replied
    Yes, I felt the same about the odd (regressive) sexual politics of the film, and I agree it wasn't Casino Royale. But I think it was better than the last one, and really, I think it was very good for an action movie.

    Leave a comment:


  • LesserBlackDog
    replied
    I saw Skyfall on Friday morning. I'm... not sure how I feel about it.

    POSSIBLE SPOILERS ALERT:





    Not sure how I felt about the obviously gay/bisexual villain. The scene where he was hitting on Bond was clearly intended to elicit outrage from both Bond and the (predictably straight, male) audience. Bond's strange "what makes you think this is my first time" comment was evidently intended to mitigate any criticism of homophobia, but I still found the scene problematic.

    I was also really pissed off about Bond's interactions with the Macau Bond girl (no idea her name), as well as her death scene. The whole thing was pure misogyny, and struck me as more closely related to the treatment of women characters in the early Bond films than in the past decade.

    As a big Judi Dench fan, I really liked that she was more of a presence in the film. I also liked the whole final sequence at Bond's childhood home. It didn't feel particularly Bond-ish to me... more like a weird amalgam of Harry Potter, Home Alone, and Batman. But I liked it anyway. I'm ambivalent about M's death and replacement. I like Ralph Fiennes ok, but Judi Dench is something special. Other than Eva Green's Vesper, Judi Dench has been the only "real" female character in the Craig films. The presence of well-developed non white, male characters made it easier to take the films seriously as films, rather than as the silly adolescent male fantasies they have traditionally tended toward.

    END SPOILERS

    The film was pretty good but still lacked the polish, tightness, and nail-biting thrills of the Bourne series and some other, more modern thrillers and action movies. Still not as good as Casino Royale.

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  • BB
    replied
    Skyfall was really, really good.

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  • Cannon
    replied


    @jonATL - Yes. It is quite underrated for what it is, in my opinion. Its a smoldering, quick, aftermath epilogue for Casino Royale's Bond.


    If you are fresh from Casino Royale, the film is at its best. By some judgments, that means it is a weaker film on its own, but I don't think it was meant to be seen alone without knowing the context of what is going on emotionally and within the plot after Casino Royale. It is really the only true sequel in the franchise. Some of the cinematography is excellent and memorable, the pace is brisk, and Bond is just about at the settling point to become Bond as we expect.


    Casino Royale is one of the finest in the series, but Quantum of Solace is a worthy entry in the franchise.


    @Jessy - Casino Royale is my favorite film and has been since I was fifteen (I'm 20 now, so that's 25% of my life. Big stuff.), so I'll pass on that claim. I will say that it is one of the top entries in the franchise and certainly should best any disappointed fans that felt Quantum of Solace was too serious and too Bourne. I'm not surprised that a number of reviews have said it is the finest in the series based on how well-crafted it is.


    SkyFall is clearly written to be a more classic Bond film set in Craig's Bond's reality. Very good outlook for the next couple based on the way the film played out, as well.

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  • jessy_diamond
    replied


    @Cannon Glad you enjoyed it. Better than Casino Royale?

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  • Cannon
    replied


    SkyFall is fantastic.

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  • jonATL
    replied


    I never saw Quantum of Solace -- that's the only recent one I've missed. Should I rent it tonight?

    Leave a comment:

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