Quantum of Solace (2008) Never watched the Daniel Craig Bond movies, although I like Craig. Mostly because I have a reflexive negative response towards hype and these movies were hyped to hell, and in fact I probably wouldn’t have liked them at the time, rife as they are with the starlets and “hot” actors of the period, where it seems like you see this face in every other movie made in these years. That bugs the shit out of me, actors who are hot with casting agents all the sudden so they are ubiquitous. Anyway, this caught my interest and actually kept my eyes on the screen, unable to work while it was going on.
Great, inventive action sequences with a minimum of CGI, it has the look of the old Bond movies. It does have a tiresome “Bond gets in dutch with ‘the agency’ and has to go rogue but redeems himself by getting his man” thing and also replacing M with Judy Dench is a contrived bunch of crap (word is out of deference ot the feminazi lobby who must ruin everything the next Bond will be a woman). Can’t anything be sacred? He does fuck a couple broads, which is something they were trying to write out during the execrable Brosnan era, movies of which I will never watch. He’s a TV star and doesn’t have the gravitas nor the physicality to be Bond. He’s like a skinny little school flailing around with those matchstick arms of his. Very stylish in a tux, poor as a secret agent. Plus, what I do know about those movies is that he is clownish.
Anyhow, this first Craig movie was entertaining. Oh, and also the trope of a female whose family was killed by a dictator involved in the bigger picture who keeps throwing a spanner in the works with her own agenda, but that is another Ian Fleming fav so we’ll let that slide. I recently found out while my daughter was doing a project on the life of Roald Dahl that Fleming and Dahl worked together (slightly, they knew each other) doing spycraft during the war. Someone should write a movie about that. Score:4 good action movie, solid acting, production and story
Casino Royale (2006) As a fan of the books, I appreciate when they hew closely to the stories therein, however, the stories usually contain quite a bit less action and certainly very few of the stunt set-pieces Bond films are known for. Therefore, while this is close to the book it’s low on action and seems, after it’s done, like a short TV teleplay.
No big explosions or stunt gags, just a lot of card playing.
They throw in some extra stuff. Worth a watch and better than a lot of crap, so it gets good grades just for that. And I still like Craig. The hard part to swallow is Eva Green. She’s not really great looking, she’s all eye makeup and pushing her eyeballs out to look exotic and her acting is really annoying.
The other thing is I can’t see her as sexy, she looks like a plastic starlet actress thing.
Never liked her in anything she plays, although I like her as a villain because she usually gets really blown up the end, like the Wizard of Oz.
Anyway, she’s mercifully killed here so she’s not in any sequels, so that’s a plus. Score: 3 would have gotten 4 with nearly any other actress in the love role
Skyfall (2012) How many they going to do about the end of the 00s and the demise of M16? Well Judy Dench, whom I could never see as a strong leader with the experience to lead M16 (they had no female agents in Brit secret service til the late ’90s, wtf was she doing all those years, secretarying?
How did that qualify her to run M16? Tokenism, pure and simple. Glad she died. Since half the film is in the little farmhouse not much room for big stunt-pieces here. And how many fucking movies do we have to watch where the criminal gets caught on purpose so he can fuck up the good guys from the inside? Jesus.
Batman rips off a lot of Bond tropes (not that Bond really originated them) particularly the one where everyone hates the hero and wants him dead so he has to battle the good guys without killing too many and the bad guys as well. Just tiresome. This is the lowest rated of my Craig movies although Bardem is ok as the maniacal villain.
BTW, where do villains get the cash to keep so many henchmen on retainer? They get killed off like flies, seems like when things are going south they’d just bail, but no, they hang around to be killed to the last man, who is, of course, the main villain. Lame. Score: 2 ok worst of the Craig bunch but still above most of the entertainments out there today.
Spectre (2015) The guy from Inglorious Basterds is here as the main villain, seems like he’s been playing a lot of villains lately and he’s eminently hateable while revealing that he’s behind all the bad stuff, he’s killed every Bond friend, he’s done everything bad that’s happened to Bond since he was a kid for fuck’s sake.
Talk about obsessed, but there seems to be a lot of money in the long-term revenge game because he has endless tech, buildings, henchmen, he rules over every other bad guy in the fucking world because of his badass surveillance mastery, he’s turned the heads of intelligence in every first world country and now he’s poised to lead them all in maximum eye in the sky eavesdropping of everything that goes on on the entire planet.
Well, when you’ve set the guy up like this I dont’ know what you’re going to follow it with since he’s the villain of the world and once you beat him the rest will fall like cockroaches, but they go that route anyway. Nowadays Bond mustn’t just go after a defector or an assassin or go fetch some microfilm. He has to save the world every time.
There’s the guy who’s taking over from M who plays the role of ‘new guy coming in to take over and mock the old guy as past his prime and out of it’ that reminded me of The Cooler and much like that movie he gets his ass handed to him and it’s satisfying, although he only gets the ‘falls from great height’ criminal death. Score:3, but now they’ve set themselves up for what, Bond vs. Satan, the REAL guy behind all the evil that’s ever happened.?