SYNOPSIS: Daniel Craig is back as Ian Fleming's James Bond 007 in Skyfall, the 23rd adventure in the longest-running film franchise of all time. In Skyfall, 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.
REVIEW: Bond is back with a bang! It would have been much easier for director Sam Mendes to follow all the mainstream check-marks on the template of the 007 series, but instead he poses a few vital questions to the relevance of the fifty-year-old British franchise. Who is Bond? What is his role? Is he a man with a future, or an irrelevant relic trapped in the past? Have M, Bond and even Her Majesty’s Secret Service outlived their usefulness? These questions seem to be indicative of the aging process. Well, the James Bond character is about to put those questions to the test, in this latest release. As an avid follower of the franchise I dare say that there has never been a better job of disbursing the question of the secret agent’s relevance.
Judging from Skyfall, the series is as healthy as it has ever been and this 23rd entry of the world’s most durable franchise (Wikipedia.org) is among the best of the Bond series, despite the sputtering slip-up that was Quantum Solace. This latest release shows that Bond is back on track and proving that the aging, technology and bravado are all useless without the wisdom and experience to bring it all together.
In terms of tone though, the story is fairly dark, and the action flows quickly. Daniel Craig is magnificent in his role and is undeniably one of, if not the best, Bonds ever to take on the challenging role. Furthermore, action purists will certainly be impressed with this installment: fight scenes involve some breathtaking, scenic backdrops as well as a few sentimental props that appear as a blast from the past. In addition, Craig’s Bond retains that unique flair with his version of the character that differentiates him from the other Bonds and somehow he manages to merge his Bond style better in this release, with the past incarnations of the character.
Some notable additions to the flick is when Ralph Fiennes sneaks in to his new part in the series and does a spectacular job, as one would expect of the award-winning actor. Also with the shock of blond hair, ‘jacked-up’ dentistry and vengeful fixation on M, Javier Bardem’s Silva is that rarest of creations: a cyber-terrorist who genuinely terrifies. Despite this, he also has a playful side while we witness the literally sadistic glee he brings to his crazy role. Thankfully, the added mainstream star power doesn’t interfere with the standard ‘Bondian’ trappings. Skyfall boasts all the glamour, excitement and exoticism we have come to expect and then some, with these notable additions to the franchise.
Despite, the new and improved twists on casting and plot, this Bond delivers above and beyond expectations. It is possibly the most interesting, complete spin on the debonair secret agent, since Sean Connery took the reins. I regard this release as a ‘must-see’ and certainly give it five stars (out of five) for total, well-rounded storytelling.
By Movie-Man Stan
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