Thursday, November 8, 2012
SKYFALL (2012): Jeff's Review
Directed By: Sam Mendes
Written By: Neal Purvis, Robert Wade & John Logan
Based on Characters by: Ian Flemming
Cinematography By: Roger Deakins
Editor: Sturat Baird
Cast: Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Ben Whishaw, Berenice Marlohe, Albert Finney, Rory Kinnear
Bond's loyalty to M is tested as her past comes back to haunt her. As MI6 comes under attack, 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost.
I have to admit I am a bit of a novice when it comes to the James bond films. I grew up with Roger Moore playing the character. I saw the films OCTOPUSSY and A VIEW TO A KILL. Both films I would have to watch again to fully remember. Though i will admit to not being particularly impressed so I pretty much avoided the saga. Though I am sure some part of me was resentful when after Moore. Pierce Brosnan seemed perfect for the role but didn’t get it due to contractual obligations with his show REMINGTON STEELE. Imagine years later when he finally did take over the role. Interest in the saga peaked for me around that time. Though I still never saw them in theaters, I did watch GOLDENEYE, half of TOMORROW NEVER DIES and DIE ANOTHER DAY. It's shocking as a movie fanatic that I have neglected the series. I will admit to being a young film punk who thought they were outdated and seemed to fall into a certain amount of clichés that tied the films down. Knowing that there will have to be certain hallmarks in them no matter what happens story-wise.
I have tried to catch up and have viewed GOLDFINGER, HER MAJESTY’S SECRET SERVICE and CASINO ROYALE. I was finally forced to see QUANTAM OF SOLACE in the theater by my cousin who was dead set on seeing it opening weekend. I also saw it another time in theaters as my mother was interested in seeing it after we saw another film. That’s right we snuck in.
SKYFALL is only the second James bond film I have seen in the theater and as I have only seen Daniel Craig in the role there. I have to say he really seems to fit the role.
I really enjoyed the film because as the film goes along. It embraces the hallmarks of the series while also going deeper and delving more into the humanistic side of the bond character. Sort of like the latest Dark knight trilogy. Tried to make Batman more human and understand his character and decisions and how being a hero takes it’s toll. This film similarly does the same with bond. Examining him as a human character while also showing off impressive action, stunts and deduction. It shows Bond is not invincible, but he knows how to get the job done. He is vulnerable Physically and emotionally…to a point. He is not always in control of the game or himself, but he won’t quit no matter what.
I have to say this film brought the fulfillment that i felt was lacking in THE DARK KNIGHT RISES. In character, style and story in a ongoing series.
In the last bond film QUANTAM OF SOLACE. Though not a fan, The problem I had with it was that while you saw bond sweat. You never felt he was truly in danger. It felt like everything he did in the film was all in a days work. Not too challenging. It also seemed more of like a closer to CASINO ROYALE. Here we have bond on a new adventure totally.
Here the themes seem to be Classic Vs. New. Demise and resurrection. The film seems more to be composed than anything else. It feels like a filmmaker behind the film using the character to his strengths but also a director more or less putting his signature on the film and character. Everything feels more rich in shots, story, character even scenery.
As always the opening action sequence is memorable. Here it seems more epic, Destructive and awe inspiring and I will just say it cool. That is something the film has in spades. A certain sophisticated cool that is classy and exciting.
It also seems like a breath of fresh air as anything can happen. It also gives the character some room to breathe and not be stuck in the confines of the rules the films of the past (at least that I have seen and read about) seem to have. Just look at Javier Bardem’s villain who seems not only evil, but so flamboyant and just plain nuts. The dye job never explained. Bond also seems to have gotten his libido back. Their is plenty of eye candy but at least here the ladies don’t seem like only dressing to be used they have real reasons behind what they do and why they are in the film. All sexy though, SPOILER still my Judi Dench love scene and nude scene still unfulfilled. SPOILER END. We have to settle for Berenice Marlohe as our requisite bond girl. Trust me she is a screen goddess in the making. I was left wanting to see more of her…on the screen. It is always a pleasure to see Naomie Harris. It has been too long
There are many memorable scenes the Opening Action Sequence, A fight scene that takes place in Shanghai, in one shot has to be seen to be believed though more of a filmmaking innovation then necessarily audience amazement. Also a fight scene that takes place in a casino is fun. There is also a new spin on a interrogation scene that takes place.
The films budget was reportedly $150,000,000. I believe you see it all on the screen and money well spent.
If the series continues on this road I can see myself taking more of an interest in the series. I will go back to get familiar a little more with the series.
Trust me this will be one to remember in the legacy of the James Bond films
I saw this in IMAX and though I know it is an expensive ticket I believe it is best experienced that way. IT’s worth the investment.