I couldn’t care less for James Bond, but I must clarify that the only Bond film I’ve seen from start to finish is the gritty and boring Quantum of Solace. I’ve seen none of the classic 007 movies, and what little I’ve seen of Pierce Brosnan’s films I found mediocre. The darker reboot, Casino Royale (which I haven’t seen) with Daniel Craig, has received both accolades and flak, the flak mostly coming from longtime fans who felt alienated by the new take. I think the filmmakers produced the next two films like cooks preparing soup: add a little bit of this, a little bit of that, until the longtime fans shut up.
Skyfall has that balanced taste. It has wit, wry humor, some gadgets, lots of action. It’s confident enough to make fun of the franchise (“What were you expecting, an exploding pen?”) and to get rid of most of the glitter and actually explore Bond’s motives and history. It has also added a younger character (Ben Whishaw playing tech-savvy Q), which I think will attract a new generation of Bond fans.
And we must mention Javier Bardem as Silva. I want to say best Bond villain ever, but that’s unfair because I haven’t seen all of the Bond films. But he is so good in this role.
Now I’m excited to watch more 007.