Not that James Bond fans will need a review to make them go for the latest entry in the 007 series, but I’m going to write about the movie anyway. Skyfall is a properly cooked Bond film that has all its ideas in place and is well-rounded. Sam Mendes takes you to Istanbul and then Shanghai in the first half of the movie, which has good action scenes and daring stunts, and then to Scotland. It’s only in the other half that Javier Bardem makes his entry as Silva, the bisexual villain who was once an MI6 agent.
After a suicide attempt which left his insides ravaged by hydrogen cyanide, Silva wants to get back at M. But it’s neither Javier Bardem’s performance nor M’s emotional scenes with Bond that make an impact – Silva is funny only when he makes a pass at James Bond and never too intimidating, but he’s a villain who has a good reason to be one. And M’s farewell, though not kitschy, is still a bit too dramatic for my taste, and Skyfall would have been worth another watch another time if only it’d been shorter.
I have only two small issues with Skyfall: Almost everybody in the movie, except the fine Ralph Fiennes, is being a smart-ass. And James Bond drinks Heineken. In the film’s defense, the wise-asses are Judi Dench (who has to be like that to deal with 007), Miss Moneypenny and Q. There’s no justification for drinking bad beer, though – and being a Brit who’s taking a break from martinis, James Bond should be drinking some great ales and breakfast stouts.
Skyfall is a really good movie, though, paced very well, with nothing over the top (not even the gadgets), and the best part about it being that Daniel Craig is now at home being James Bond. Impeccably dressed even when fighting a bad guy on the top of a train, the spy is at ease in his stiff style.