Skyfall [2012] ★★★½

There’s only one reason why “Skyfall” is the hippest, highest-octane Bond film in ages, and his name is Daniel Craig. Way before “Casino Royale” was released, the internet buzz killers were already ragging on him for being blond and blue-eyed and too short  for Bond duty. Not only did Craig turn out to be the best Bond since Sean Connery, he’s also the first of the Bonds to lose the condescension and take the role seriously. And he does it with an actor’s skill that puts you on notice that Bond, the real James Bond is finally back in business. In “Skyfall”, it turns out to be rousing good news that the producers have brought on director Sam Mendes, the genius behind “American Beauty” and “Road to Perdition” to make his Bond debut.  In fact, Mendes is an ideal fit to follow Martin Campbell in 2006 and Marc Forster in 2008. For Mendes, the impossible is business as usual, and his is one of the most spectacular yet. There’s no doubt in my mind that the movie is also weighed down by several unnecessary action scenes as usual. But the producers deserve credit for busting Bond out of the box, and this is why I rank this one among the best in the series. The film opens promisingly with a scene set in Istanbul. Then come the familiar credits, and the catchy song by Adele, followed by many slow scenes. After that, everything gets better. Take the villain: he’s Silva, brilliantly played by Javier Bardem, who for once isn’t after world domination. His plan? You’ll have to see for yourself. Suffices to say that Bardem, a star in his native Spain and an Oscar winner, gives off a genuine menacing vibe, especially when he first gets to meet 007. What about the Bond girls? The gorgeous Berenice Marlohe sizzles as Severine, the girl who warns Bond about Silva. But it’s Naomie Harris as Eve, an MI6 agent who lifts her role to class act status. It also helps that Craig is mixing it up with a first-rate cast, including Ralph Fiennes  as the Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee, Albert Finney in a surprise appearance, and most especially Judi Dench, back in the game as M, Bond’s boss. Dame Judi wasn’t a major character in the Brosnan films, but with Craig she comes out blazing, knowing she’s found an actor who can give as good as he gets.

As the plot globe-trots from Istanbul, London and Shanghai to an overblown climax in Scotland, “Skyfall” uncovers something unique in the 007 dossier: an unformed secret-agent man, lacking polish, vulnerable to violence and helplessly human. Craig gives us James Bond in the fascinating act of inventing himself.  If someone asks you what a true movie star is, point to him. He has it all. And he’s found an ideal collaborator in Mendes. You leave “Skyfall” thinking that these guys can do anything. What more can you ask for?

Rating: 3.5/4

17 replies »

  1. I liked the movie until they went to his home in Scotland, that’s when I started feeling that he will turn out to be Batman

      • exactly. Nevertheless, I found the plot boring and not worthy of a JAMES BOND movie.I’d give it 7/10, much better then Quantum of Solace, but worse than Casino Royale.

  2. el sayyara Aston Martin DB5 .modele 64 , be3ouha bi 2010 by 4000.000 Sterlinieh ;
    – Since its cinematic appearances, the car has been in the possession of Jerry Lee, an American who purchased it from Aston Martin in 1969 for $12,000 — sounds like a good investment in retrospect. The only condition of the deal was that Aston Martin could use the vehicle for promotional purposes whenever they wanted to. Lee drove the car, which has 30,000 miles on the odometer, back in the ’70s, but it has been hidden away in a Bond-themed storage room ever since.

  3. Nasser = sahh , ana trobelsi ! bheb el sayyarat but much aktar min el afleim ,kenet ehdar cinama bi colorado, palace,metropole,roxy …bheb el cinama min 3omr 11 seni !ne3mit karim .
    bikhousous sayaret Bond , fi ghalta = modele 1963 much 1964 – salleh
    wa chukran .ana liom barrat lebnein lil asaf !

  4. Shoukran ya abdelhamid 3ala hal m3loumeit el jaideh. ana kamin min trablous bas ma kinit rouh 3la cinamit el zawit mytlak. aktar shi samira miss, wlido wil hamra 🙂

  5. leik ya Abed, wala b3adak btytzakarou la bi3 el kalawi kein naseh kteer wyhmoul byeidou kishashit diban m3mouleh min kias neylon? Kalawiiiiiiiii ya walad…
    cinama lido kina nfout 3alaya wiji el sabi youssrokh 3llouuuuu 2yjrikoun air condition wkib satel mai … ha ha ha ha

    • Betzakar biyei3 el helou.very big.eyeglasses dirty.tayyybin.burnos abiad ma bisakir 3a jesmou.helou covered bi naylon 3lay tares el mizeine.min 100grs la 500grs!i remember el kalewi near el saraya facing se3et tall.btetzakar wahibeh 3al tall?ba3da trablous trablos?ana ma kenet fout 3al cinameit taba3 el wasleit haha .not convinced,bass much machkali .are u in lebanon?

  6. This or Casino Royale?? it’s a pretty close call! But i must admit Javier Bardem stole the show! Waay better than Le Chiffre. I loved the old school touch of the whole movie and how it tends to give us sparks here and there abt going vintage. Bond is as humanized as Casino Royale, and boy do i love Graig! He keeps getting better and better at it. Oh btw it’s abt time Judi Dench had to go:P Never liked the sight of her anyways:P The ending in Scotland is nicely done alongside the whole climax and night/blue dunno what to call it settings. Anyways let’s hope the next one doesn’t go Quantum of Solace:P they really ran out of ideas in Solace:P

  7. I really enjoyed Skyfall a lot. It delivered exactly what it promised. One thing I noticed about that climax in Scotland – it kind of reminded me of Home Alone. 😉

  8. A brilliant picture, a very slick way of re-inventing the Bond series,I must say its been a long carefully planned process where Daniel Craig has been walking the path of an agent in the making to a God amongst men figure( I found some similarities in the character build up with the Dark Knight rises as well)

    Judi Dench’s performance is one to remember, how she managed to keep her composure throughout the movie is simply stunning, a true Iron Lady.. she makes Margaret Thatcher proud.

    As for the Bond nemesis, its not new to see Javier Bardem as a bad guy figure, an old agent left ignored by his agency seeking vendetta and wrecking havoc throughout the British Empire in a meticulously planned way a cold blooded killer and a cybernetic genius he fits the role perfectly (kind or reminded me of Sean Bean in Golden Eye, except for the delusional part)

    The struggle between hero and anti- hero is one to be remembered, where the whole conflict is based around the survival of the fittest, old school meets technological advance (isnt this what Bond is truely about?)

    Sam Mendes deserves all the credits he’s been given, but let’s not forget about John Logan the writer of such a marvelous script (Gladiator; The Last Samurai; The Aviator; Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street; Rango; Coriolanus; Hugo, just to name a few) who has been handled the torch now after Ian Fleming to write down two more sequels after Skyfall.

    What a beautiful way to celebrate 50 years of Bond movies, Daniel Craig showed he deserves to be James Bond and what a way to answer all the bad critics (including me) after he’s been casted for Casino Royal.

    P.S. Please dont destroy another Aston Martin , i almost had a stroke .

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