Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Skyfall Review

Skyfall is the 23rd Bond film, and the third starring Daniel Craig in the lead role. Now where many felt that last film in the series, Quantum of Solace, was a misstep - I'm pleased to say that this movie is a real return to form, and a must-see this Winter!

I'm not going to lie to you - this was my first Bond film. Over the years I've managed to stay away from the series. I've heard good things, but just never had the chance to see one start to finish. At first I was worried this would be a problem, but thankfully I was mistaken. If your a newcomer to this series as I was, then don't be put off -- there is absolutely nothing stopping you from having a blast with Skyfall. You get acquainted to the characters very quickly, leaving nothing stopping you immersing yourself in the epic story -- and it really is epic.

MI6 and its agents are being targeted by a group led by Raoul Silva (played by Javier Bardem). The identities of said agents are being spilled out onto the Internet, which is leading to their assassinations. This was the last thing that a suffering M (Judi Dench) - who was already being pressured into retirement by new guy, Gareth Mallory (Ralph Fiennes) - needed. What doesn't help the grim situation that MI6 face is that at the beginning of the movie, Bond is "killed." This isn't a spoiler, as it tells you that in the trailer, but it does leave 007 feeling a little rusty upon return.

The plot is very, very well done. It gives us a deep insight into Bond's character - even giving us a glimpse into his humble beginnings as an orphan living in Scotland - while also piling on some awesome action sequences that will leave both long-term fans and newcomers on the edge of their seat. This is a spoiler-free review, but I have to mention the ending and the final action sequence which really was breathtaking and beautifully done.

I did have some worries at the beginning of the film, as it does take its time before giving you a proper idea of what's going on. This can end up really hindering a movie if the audience is given no idea until the end. Thankfully, though Skyfall did end up feeding the audience just enough information to keep you excited, while at the same time not revealing too much leaving my fears unfounded.

The story really is fantastic, and so it seems appropriate that the cast would be filled with such fantastic actors as well. Daniel Craig makes his return as the more rugged Bond fans have come to know over the last few years and doesn't disappoint. Craig has the talent to not only provide some great acting in the more close-up moments of a scene, while also holding his own in the action sequences proving that after 6 years he still has more than enough energy to play Britain's most dangerous spy.

Ralph Fiennes also makes a great debut to the franchise as the aforementioned Gareth Mallory. Alongside other newcomer Eve, who really is the Bond girl that people should be interested in this time round - and one I'm sure we'll be seeing a lot more of.
Finally, Ben Whishaw came in to fill the role of series favourite, Q. Unfortunately, I have nothing to compare to having not seen the previous Q, but I don't think long-term fans have anything to worry about. Whishaw gives a strong performance, setting up Q as a likeable character and one I'd definitely want to see back for the next movie. The way Craig and Whishaw play off each other (mainly regarding Q's age) offers up some funny moments as well, which is appreciated when things are looking so bleak for Bond and MI6.

But in my opinion it was Judi Dench and Javier Bardem that really stole the show.
Dench gives a powerful performance in a film that focuses around as much time on her as it does the titular character. This being the first Bond film I've seen, I wasn't expecting to be able to invest so much in a character so quickly, but Dench's M is just impossible not to love played with a charm that deserves applauding. This is shown particularly in her scenes with Bond himself. The two have a mother-son chemistry on-screen which just comes across so genuine and believable.

Meanwhile, Bardem gives a borderline disturbing performance. Playing a character who has obviously lost his mind and yet at some moments almost has a point, a valid reason for his actions. I won't say any more at risk of giving too much away, but he is one of the best, most interesting antagonists I've seen in a film for a very long time.


What did you think of Skyfall? Comment below! What did you think of our new review layout? Let us know and any comments we'll try to take on board!


Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.