I just came back from watching Skyfall, and I am quite astonished at how flat I thought it was. I think I read a few reviews which praised it, which delighted me because I’m a fan of James Bond and of Daniel Craig as Bond. So I went into the theatre excitedly, gushing to my partner “oh, they said this is really good, one of the better Bond films.”
The movie had too much slow drama and too little action, I think. This is the second film I feel this way recently. The first was The Dark Knight Rises. That was another latest movie from another action franchise that felt way too drama-ish. Complete with a weepy Alfred and everything. I appreciate the immense talent of Michael Caine, but c’mon.
I’ve also just realised that the two movies share that similarity. A supporting character given a meatier storyline than usual. In the case of Skyfall, this refers to the role of M, played by the great Judi Dench. I think for both these films, that move was a mistake.
I love a good drama, but I went to see an action film because I wanted to see an action film.
The storyline is so boring. And the plot involving a stolen file that bears the list of their double agents who had infiltrated enemy organisations, sounds so familiar, i.e. unoriginal. Hasn’t the covert-agents-in-danger-of-being-exposed-thingy been done a few times before? For example, in the very first Mission: Impossible way back in 1996.
The villain was so unremarkable, and he had looked so promising in the trailer. Poor Javier Bardem. A massive talent wasted here.
On the other hand, Ralph Fiennes‘ hotness made Daniel Craig look even more like shit. And what was that all about? Yeah ok, he had cheated death and had bummed around the beach a lot, but c’mon, he’s James Bond here. He had this haggard look about him. If the writers could make him cheat death, they could extend the artistic license a bit more and make him look fab, no? A dreadful thought this, but if the two men appear in another movie together, they’ll just have to scrub away some of Ralph’s smoldering sexiness so he doesn’t outshine Daniel in the sex appeal department again.
And then the Bond girls this time. Firstly, Naomie Harris. I love that woman. I was so looking forward to see her in this movie. She had only a small role in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, but as a witch with that Caribbean accent, she totally nailed it because she was completely spellbinding. Unforgettable. In Skyfall, her character Eve was so meh. She’s a fantastic actress and yet they made the role they gave her somewhat dull, for a Bond girl.
Then, that other Bond girl named Severin, played by French actress Bérénice Lim Marlohe. My God, the franchise has scored itself another ‘BOND GIRL’, as in, really a Bond Girl. This doesn’t happen very often unfortunately. The last time I was blown away by a Bond girl was:
- Eva Green, as the girl with a tragic history Vesper Lynd, an important Bond Girl as she’s the one James Bond didn’t just shag but actually fell in love with, in Casino Royale (2006).
- Before Eva was Rosamund Pike, as ice-cold Miranda Frost from 2002’s Die Another Day.
- And before her was the breathtaking Sophie Marceau as Elektra King in The World Is Not Enough (1999)
- And before her was the fantastic Famke Janssen as the unforgettable Xenia Onatopp, in Goldeneye (1995). Actually that movie scored a rare double with the equally captivating Izabella Scorupco as the other Bond Girl.
There were other actresses in the older movies who made an impression too. My point and opinion is that the casting people were not always lucky to land the right actresses with that special allure and screen charisma that spell out ‘Bond Girl’. But in Skyfall, they got Bérénice Lim Marlohe, and what do they do with her? Gave her role Severin really few scenes! I mean, WTF??!! I was so annoyed!
She provided an understated but memorable opening in Skyfall for Daniel to do the trademark introduction of “Bond. James Bond.” with her breathless and just a tad threatening “Mistuhh?“. She was so fabulous leering away gorgeously and with her evil sexy smirk in the beginning especially in the casino. Her intense sex appeal and dangerous vibe, with so much potential to go all out to a deranged-but-sexy path reminded me so much of Famke Janssen’s role in Goldeneye.