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Movie Review – SKYFALL

| 5 December 2012 | Reply

Directed by Sam Mendes, Starring Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes
Released October 2012
Reviewed by Shane Pinnegar
8.5/10

Skyfall, the third movie since the franchise was rebooted with Casino Royale, follows in the action packed footsteps of that film – Daniel Craig’s debut as Bond – and thankfully not it’s follow-up Quantum Of Solace, which was a turgid mess.

In what might be the best Bond yet, Craig makes a brooding and intense 007 whilst Judi Dench delivers a multi-layered performance as MI6 head ‘M’.

All the classic Bond elements are present and accounted for – exotic locations (Shanghai, London, Istanbul), beautiful women, and an abundance of action, adventure and bodies.

Where Skyfall really excels is in celebrating the franchise’s rich history, whilst very clearly stating that there’s a new sherriff in town now, and not everything will be done by the book.

Craig’s Bond doesn’t need the gadgets and gimmicks of past episodes, as made clear in a witty scene with the new young Quartermaster ‘Q’ (Ben Wishaw).  Having said that, his beautiful old Austin Martin is pulled out of storage and used to great effect, headlight machine guns and – almost – ejector seat and all, proof that for all Craig’s seriousness, the filmmakers have a wry sense of humour.

Whether it’s blowing up a tube line in London, fighting atop a Shanghai skyscraper or feeding a henchman to a komodo dragon in a gambling den, Skyfall is never less than thrilling as Bond pursues the twisted hacker genius who stole a list of undercover agents, then hacked MI6 and blew the office’s up remotely.

Bardem is chilling as the villain of the piece, channelling rage, madness and intelligence to create a camp and truly memorable bad guy.

The movie’s name comes from Bond’s childhood home, and we delve a little into the origins of the famous character as he revisits the stone cottage on the Scottish Moors to hole up and await the climactic face off, cutting down a couple dozen henchmen and a helicopter on the way.

It’s bold and brassy stuff, very British in some ways, yet very globally aware in others, but importantly the producers have not sacrificed an exciting and interesting piece of entertainment in their efforts to make it as appeal as broadly as possible.

 

Shane

Category: Movie & Theatre Reviews

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