Bill I’s Review – 4 out of 5
Roger Ebert called this a film that reinvigorates Bond, and I totally agree. From the beginning scene it made me smile, with a fresh car/motorcycle chase scene – on top of Istanbul roofs, through the markets, on top of a train! I would think after all these years, and the Bourne movies, that chase scenes could not be new, but Sam Mendes, the director, out does all expectations. Judi Dench has a big role as M, and she knocks it out of the park. Daniel Craig is perfect, starting out as a burnout, and then coming back to save the day. Most Bond movies are known for the distinctiveness and quirks of their villains, and here Javier Bardem comes up with a doozy. I won’t explain what he’s obsessed with, but it’s believable with a cool back story (I have a bone to pick with that, mainly the fact that he’s clearly not English-born, wondering how he could have gained the position he once had). And there’s fresh blood with a young computer geek as Q and Ralph Feinnes as M’s beaurocratic boss, Mallory. The female counterparts are great as well, with Berenice Marlohe as the femme fatale
and Naomie Harris as Bond’s sharpshooting colleague Eve
The story slows down towards the end, before building up to a fiery and in my mind perfect ending.
Bill C’s Review – 2.5 out of 5
I didn’t like Skyfall as much as Bill. The opening set piece was great. Delving into Bond’s backstory a little was good. The Bond girls were good (although they seem to play less of a role than in old Bond movies). I thought Daniel Craig and Javier Bardem were good. Although while I liked Bardem’s acting I thought this was one of the weaker Bond super villains since his goal was not world domination.
I did have problems with parts of the plot and script. While I happily suspend disbelief (as required for these types of moves) about their ability to survive the action sequences (including riding motorcycles at full speed on roofs, jumping on to a moving train, driving the wrong way at full speed through traffic, not getting hit when automatic weapons are being fired at you, somehow picking out the door the master criminal went through, etc. I cannot silently sit by when they imply that MI6 is as incompetent as this move makes them out to be. I’ve seen too many Bond movies for that! (See spoiler alert section for one example).
As for the script, at one point M gave a speech about how the threats the world faces today are different and we need to be vigilant. Doe anyone not know this?
Ah, I just figured out the other thing that was gnawing at me. The plot of the old grizzled crimefighter being burned out, shirking his duties and dropping off the grid for a while before coming back to action seemed like something I had just seen. Batman!!
Despite the major bitching and moaning it is still a Bond movie and the action is good so if you’re into this type of movie you should think about going.
SPOILER ALERT ON: Do not read anymore if yo have not seen the movie! Clearly, I’ve been working for IBM too long. When MI6 recovers the computer of a master computer hacker who has already hacked the MI6 computers you would expect them to treat that computer with extreme care. Instead I watch in disbelief as the new young whipper snapper Q connects it to the MI6 computer network without a care in the world!! With what appears to be multiple ethernet cables!! I’ll take the experienced old Q any day (if he hadn’t died) over the new arrogant, know it all one.
SPOILER ALERT OFF.