11.12.2012

Review: Skyfall

I was SO excited to go see Skyfall on Friday night. I was as anxious to get to the movie on time as an expectant dad pacing the waiting room hallway. After watching the movie, I was a little disappointed. Folks are shouting from the rooftops that this is the best  James Bond movie of all time. I don't agree. [spoiler alert ahoy]

The starting credits are a little more repetitious than I remember, and I couldn't help but flash back to Harry Potter--when I found out Ralph Fiennes was in the movie, I knew there was something fishy. The song by Adele was amazing though: a little moody, all sass.

Once we get started, we realize it's not going to be a smooth ride for James nor for M. It isn't until he confronts M about not having trusted him to get the job done that my suspension of disbelief crashes. Why did she trust the other agent to get the shot, versus just letting James get the bad guy? Especially since it seemed to me that the other agent was rather wet behind the ears when it comes to field work.

The other time my suspension of disbelief came to a crashing halt was when we suddenly head out to China. Why China? Also, the choreography for the boat arrival at the casino looked a little too theatrical and not really well thought out for film.

The third and last time my suspension of disbelief vanished was when Q accidentally (WTF) hooks a strange laptop to HQ's network and causes the entire department to get hacked. Ridiculous. Preposterous. You never hook a strange laptop to your network. A real computer nerd knows that--or even me, which I'm not. By the way, did anyone else walk away thinking that the first actor they had in mind to portray Q was Cillian Murphy?

I also didn't like the obsolescence undertones that kept popping up at all times. It's like witnessing a burned out agent go through schizophrenic paranoia--or worse, middle age. Was the art museum scene supposed to be funny? Honestly, I almost felt like they were trying to disenfranchise older fans in favor of  hipsters. If hipsters wonder why this series is still alive, whether it's obsolete, then just don't watch and leave it to those of us who do care.

On the plus side, it was nice seeing great action and some good funny remarks back on the screen. I would have preferred the hand-to-hand combat scene in the night-light skyscraper to have been a little more than far away shadows though. It was a great scene that seems to have suffered from either lighting or editing. I got confused who was who after a little bit.

It was also great that HQ played a larger role, so we got to meet some other characters that form the team and play an important role. Like in the older days, when James often visited Q in his shop and we got to see a little behind the scenes.

I felt that they could have shown the antihero way sooner than they did. Did an entire hour go by first? And why did they make him so cartoonish? It wasn't really in keeping with the old time antiheros, who, although a little cliched, have never looked comical (the only exclusion is Blofeld's death). Javier Bardem was underutilized.

Also, although they chose two amazing women to be the film's Bond girls, I wish they didn't seem to go *squee* whenever they're sharing the screen with James.

I can't help to think that they cut corners on a couple of things. Though the scenery shots were really well made.

I came to the decision that I need to watch this movie again--when it shows up on my TV. I'll have to see it from a different perspective, after some time. Determine at that time whether I missed something.

Perhaps, it's the ending that really got my goat. That, and the hacking part. Whatever it may be, this is the first James Bond movie that I've walked away from, pondering and perplexed. I'll wait for it to show up on TV or Amazon Instant to really make up my mind.