Warning: There are too many spoilers.
Despite 8.1 rating at IMDB and good reviews at Rotten Tomatoes, I found everything about this new Bond film quite tedious – except Javier Bardem and to a lesser degree Ralph Fiennes.
|Moneypenny wreaking havoc on the streets of Istanbul – there is a lady in traditional garb to lend authenticity although you wont find women in this kinda dress in downtown Istanbul, you will have to check out the countryside for it|
Like all Bond fares, this one too opens with an action scene – complete with crazy ass crossfire, car chase, rooftop motorcycle chase, action on a moving train that includes Bond getting shot at by a Uranium infused bullet (or was that bullet made of uranium?) and some antics with a crane while aboard that train – the twists here is that M orders Moneypenney to take a risky aim which resulted in Bond getting shot by Moneypenney and presumed dead. He stayed dead somewhere in Turkey until he found out about an explosion in MI6 HQ in London and decided to return home. The explosion happened because M managed to lose important data and as a result, MI6 was attacked. Ralph Fiennes’ Mallroy tells M that not only has she screwed up rather gallactically, she is too old to continue running her department (Isn’t Judi Dench like 103 already and should have been retired a good forty years ago?) but M refused to go. They later learn that someone is after M and the film from thereon revolved around saving M (yes, Ms Boss is the damsel in distress in this one) and about Bond’s loyalty to M, rather than the Queen or country, and it was ‘oh so significant‘ because she ordered a shot where Bond almost lost his life in the opening sequence – YAWN! From there on, things got a tad dreary, until Javier Bardem graced the screen in his blindingly blonde flamboyantly gay villainous persona of a former agent gone rogue, Raoul Silva.
|Bond in all his Saville Row suited glory – wreaking havoc in Grand Bazaar|
Before Bardem made his entrance – which was after an hour – the film had a surly Bond, a morose M, a glum Mallroy, some fat Chinese hoodlums, a briefcase full of 500 Euro notes, a sullen former Child prostitute, and two very dour looking ginormous lizards. Bardem’s Silva was like a breath of fresh air, he infused energy in the scenes he was in and honestly, I was rooting for him, instead of Bond.
The film opened in Istanbul, I mean WTF? Ever since I was looted in Istanbul, every other film – be it Taken 2, Ek Tha Tiger or the latest Bond flick – is shot in the city which feels like somebody is kinda rubbing it in. Secondly, who the fuck puts the whole bloody list of undercover agents in one single drive – including all their aliases – and then conveniently loses it? BBC is in a shambles already and if this is how things are being run at MI6, then this Tory government is a lot less competent than most people think. In any case, the whole undercover agent list theme – or Noc list as they called it then – has already been done in the first installment of Mission Impossible and Agent Ethan Hunt did a much better job of it than Mr. Bond. Bond, who was shot by that Uranium bullet left the fragments of uranium bullet in his chest and then conveniently dug them out with a knife in his bathroom to get tested and trace the killer. Other lesser human beings would have died of toxicities but then, he is not your average Joe, he is Bond.
|Silva getting intimate with Bond|
The film doesn’t really come to life until Javier Bardem shows up but even then some of the sequences are unbelievable. For instance, Silva is a former agent well familiar with the gadgets and toys provided by Q, yet he never bothered to frisk Bond for a tracking device which lead to his arrest, but then we were told that he planned it so that he can get arrested and get transported to London. I mean seriously? Even if the guy was short of cash – which he obviously was not – Silva was an IT genius, if he wanted to get to London, I am sure hacking into an airline website and scoring a couple of first class tickets would not have been much of an ordeal for him. Just when you think Silva is evil incarnate who is out to destroy good folks with posh accents at MI5, we find out that Silva is just a misunderstood former agent with serious mommy issues.
One of the biggest glitches of the film was that during his psychological evaluation – conducted by a Freud look alike – Bond said that he thought of England as his home but later his family home was shown to be in Scotland. If he was an Englishman, then why was his ancestral estate in Scotland and if he was a Scotsman, then I will be damned if he called England his home.
|Bond, M, Bond’s Aston Marton at Skyfall|
There were too many references about people being too old for the job. Everyone barring Bond wanted M to retire because she was too old, quite a few including Mallroy though Bond is too old to be out in the field, by the time the film ended, I too was convinced that I am too old to go on and should take up something gentle and age appropriate – like knitting.
Things you I learned in this bond film;
- They can make a film about a failed Bond mission and still rake in millions.
- They can make a film which has shades of both The Dark Knight Rises and Home Alone (The improvised bombs made out of light bulbs at Skyfall were reminiscent of a time when we all liked Macaulay Culkin) and it still works.
- A villain with mommy issues – no matter how entertaining he is throughout the film– can be sort of anti climatic.
- MI6 issued standard cyanide is bogus, ek dum kachra, it won’t kill you; the worst it will do is melt part of your facial structure and turn your hair blonde.
- Bond can pull in everyone, men women, vampires and dragons with his steely blue eyes –okay not vampires but that is only because none were around. Eve Moneypenny lovingly shaved a towel clad Bond, Silva rubbed his thighs gleefully in anticipation, a Turkish woman kept him company when he was presumed dead, a Chinese feme fatale was willing to take him to Silva – and her bed, and last but not the least a dragon/lizard in Shanghai was also charmed by Agent 007 and that is just this particular installment. I wonder if anyone has ever bothered to test him for STDs.
|The mandatory sexy babe|