Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Skyfall. 50 Years was worth waiting for.

No spolier alert here, but an honest review from someone whose seen all of the Bond movies (more than once).

Fantastic.

If someone had asked me, "What's your favourite Bond movie?", I'd likely have settled on Goldfinger (1964). Sean Connery was the cold, to the point spy, with witty one liners and a great car that was "tweaked" by "Q" branch. The villain, Auric Goldfinger, was great, (although he didn't speak a word of English and had his entire script voiced over). Given it's time, the well choreographed fight scenes, the car... I would have picked that one.

Skyfall is Daniel Craig's third attempt to match Connery's character (as was Goldfinger for Connery), and the saying  "third times a charm" held true for both. Craig has nailed it. The "Bond. James Bond" line isn't forced, the "shaken not stirred" line is only alluded to, the techno gadgets that became a little tiring and over the top at times are no where to be found except for...

There are many times the movie gives a nod to it's 50 year history, and most of those nods (as I watched and interpreted them) are to Goldfinger. By now it should not be a spoiler to say that the reintroduction of the 1965 DB5 was "kewl", being Bond's personal car in this movie, not something given him by the new  "Q"
(who is probably a better replacement than the ill thought John Cleese was). There are further nods to gadgets that are understood only by Bond aficionados during the movie that will have to be explained to the younger viewer, or better still, watch Goldfinger before you go see Skyfall.

Craig is superb. I didn't think Bond would ever cry in a movie. After all, no tears were shed when his wife was killed in "On her Majesty's Secret Service". Kudos to the director who saw fit to expose the fact that the character does have emotions, and affection.

Judi Dench as M gives what may be the performance of her career, and is (as I recall) the first "changing of the guard" insofar as M is concerned that is explained to us in any way.

Javier Bardem plays the type of character he honed in "No Country for Old Men" (and pretty much everything else he's done well), and is a believable character, as opposed to some recent villains.

We saw it in IMAX at Silver City. Excellent. There are movies I've seen that are simply too loud... and this isn't one of them. As with every Bond movie, stuff explodes. The shaking seats are a part of the "big screen" experience, and while it may not rival the boat explosion in "Thunderball", stuff really does explode.

Bond, simply, comes back to it's roots, having morphed into a gadget filled, unbelievable, and often silly series, with some terrible offerings (mostly in the Roger Moore era), that are exposed for what they were after this movie is held up for comparison.

If you've seen them all... GO! If you haven't, this is still a great movie.

Our little entourage spanned the generations, and everyone enjoyed it. If you like some intrigue, well choreographed stunts, dry humour, and a movie that doesn't try to be something it isn't just to fit into a mould, GO!

There haven't been too many times a Bond movie and "Oscar" are mentioned, but this year may be different. Both Goldfinger and Thunderball won in a category in 1965, and never for acting.

We'll wait to see what this years Academy Awards thinks of the latest, and best Bond movie to date.

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