I don't get out to the movies much these days, let's face it Netflix has made it so much easier to stay home and watch while you lay on the couch, but this past weekend I did get out with a friend for what has become somewhat of a tradition for us. The viewing of the newest James Bond film. Skyfall, the 23rd Bond movie, and Daniel Craig's third time in the lead roll is a well done and highly enjoyable film.
As has become typical for the new James Bond films, we are treated to an action scene at the beginning of the film with 007 chasing a criminal who has information he needs, in this case the stolen hard drive of M's computer containing a list of all undercover MI-6 agents working in terrorist organizations. Paired with Eve, a young female agent (wonderfully played by the beautiful Naomie Harris), James is in pursuit and just staying in the game when M decides she can no longer wait for the man who has saved her bacon more times than not and instructs Eve to take the shot, regardless of the fact that James is in the way. Yeah, not a good decision as James ends up shot and presumed dead.
Fast forward 3 months and M is now being hauled on the carpet for the stolen hard drive and the decisions she's made over the last year. While it soon becomes obvious she's being pushed into retirement, she once again finds herself and her career being given a second chance courtesy of the return of James Bond. While James is rusty, a little out of shape, and suffering from a bit too much scotch, he's the best shot at helping her recover what's been lost. Plus now he's got a personal vendetta of sorts to settle - his need to get even with the man who got away.
|An Older Looking James Bond|
While M is in the new home office (the original got blown up by the mastermind behind the theft), James takes off to the far East in hot pursuit of the original thief. While this may seem like a typical James Bond plot, it is. Why mess with a tried and true formula which works? The things about this film, which kept it fresh for me, were the observances made by James, the new younger version of Q (wonderfully played by Ben Whishaw) and Gareth Mallory, the man trying to push M into early retirement. When it becomes clear the true villain (played by the talented Javier Bardem) is tied to M's past - we learn that while countries have changed and alliances come and go, the spy game is and always has been played in the shadows. It's also not a game for the faint of heart.
There's something else about this installment which makes it highly different from any of the others, and because it's a huge spoiler I won't go into it other than to say that the film's title is really important and it's also a revelation of sorts. As the James Bond franchise celebrates it's Silver Anniversary and 23rd film, all I can say is keep up the good work, I can't wait to see what the future brings as it seems inclined to be returning to some of it's original roots.
My Rating: 4.5 out of 5