HE SAID WHAT?!
Posted By Alex
I was very excited to watch the new Bond movie when it came out several months ago. As the numbers would have it, so were millions of you. I was dismayed though when I realized that not even halfway through the movie, I felt disappointed. Why is this movie so fucking boring? I swear to God critics watched a different version of Skyfall than I did because the version I saw sucked balls. Apparently, all you need to wow critics is to include these long, drawn out scenes where people stare off into the sunset and are in deep thought. We’ll call it the Tom Cruise.
There are movies where every single scene is so interesting that you don’t want to stop watching. And they aren’t even action movies. I’m referring to movies such as Good Will Hunting and A Few Good Men. These movies have zero car chases and zero explosions but whose scenes are so gripping that they stay with you long after the credits have rolled. Like when Will makes that Harvard student look like a moron or when Tom Cruise’s character manages to get his witness to accidentally testify. Tom Cruised your ass, bitch! These are brilliant scenes topped with amazing dialogue.
So please, someone tell me why the latest Bond movie is so…bland? It’s like they got the same dude who directed Wolverine to make this one. And we all know why Wolverine sucked—that director had zero experience in setting up an action sequence. The same applies to Bond where the single parkour scene in Casino Royale trumps every single action sequence in Skyfall put together. This is pretty fucking sad for a movie every critic raved about. Sure there were some neat references to the older movies—that was nice—and the story moved ahead with some character shuffling centered around M that I found interesting and sad. Bardiem was a nice addition to Bond’s list of bad guys and I found him to be the most terrifying/hilarious one yet. It’s just too bad the movie is full of scenes that go nowhere and filled with dialogue that’s as flat as this five-day-old soda sitting on my desk.
Very rarely do I find myself in a theater bored out of my mind. The last time this happened was when Tom Hanks was frantically crying for Wilson and the whole time I just wanted to fucking kill myself. We came out of Skyfall with Wendy saying she had really liked it and me being completely underwhelmed. Bond movies for me have always been about three things:
Yes, I’m aware some of you are probably clamoring for “Bond Girls” but watching Bond womanize isn’t why I love the Bond movies. I love them because he catches bad guys using laser watches and cars with rocket launchers and does so with style. Sadly, Skyfall had only one of the three elements (style) because the action and gadgets were either missing or shitty. And thank you for replacing Q with some Hipster dude who apparently doesn’t like gadgets. Because that was just the cherry on top of this steaming pile of crap you laid on the silver screen.
And about that flat soda, don’t worry. I just threw it out. I just wish someone would have thrown me out of the theater as well. Jazz style.
SHE SAID WHAT?!
Posted By Wendy
Where Skyfall excelled as a movie was not in capturing the typical Bond nostalgia (which it did tip its hat to), but in reinventing what it means to be a 007. Bond as a franchise is 50 years old, and when the films were first made, they were made in a world that is much different from the world today. Skyfall recognized that and charged Daniel Craig to, quite literally, “adapt or die.”
While Skyfall may not have had the fun gadgets of old like exploding pens or laser watches, their omission was not a mistake. It was purposeful. Director Sam Mendes cast a young Q with more sophisticated, subtle technology that made more sense for fighting wars not against an open enemy, but against sick individuals “in the shadows.” And THAT’S where Skyfall’s brilliance lays—in embracing how today’s enemies fight their battles, and how spies thus need to change their tactics. Espionage has changed, and so Bond must change with it.
Where Skyfall also prevailed was weaving much more emotional impact throughout the story than a typical Bond film. Why many people fell in love with Daniel Craig in Casino Royale (besides those amazing too-short swimming trunks) was because he represented a grittier Bond. A Bond who wasn’t just debonair, but also a little damaged. Mendes let Craig flex his acting chops further in Skyfall, flashing his icy blue eyes behind a steely facade as he stumbles his way back into the MI6 fold. Skyfall’s Bond has fallen, is presumed dead, and returns to work physically and mentally disabled. When he’s victorious, it makes the wins that much sweeter.
And let’s talk about Javier Bardem. He’s the best villain I’ve seen on screen since Heath Ledger’s Joker. He’s twisted but jolly; horrifyingly entertaining. He’s sadistic, a tad flamboyant (perhaps one of the first seemingly openly gay villains?), and completely captivating. And he’s not just a bad guy for bad guy’s sake. His motivations run deep, right into the heart and soul of MI6—M herself. Her fate, and the introduction of Miss Moneypenny, leave viewers anxious for the next Bond installment.
Now, to be completely honest, this isn’t my favorite Bond of all time. I’m still partial to Casino Royale: the parkour scene, the gorgeous cityscapes, the love interest (finally a smart Bond girl who’s not just for banging but actually—gasp!—for loving), and yes, those beautiful booty shorts, all add up to a more pleasurable movie experience for me.
However, as a cinematic achievement, Skyfall definitely raises the bar on all future Bond offerings. If Alex can’t see that, well, I’d be happy to help Uncle Phil toss him out the door myself .