Skyfail Pt. I
The trick to truly appreciating Skyfall is to understand what Director Sam Mendes is attempting to establish with this film: no number of gadgets or late night rendezvous with exotic babes was going to save Bond this time. It had to be something deeper—a balance between the physical and emotional. Essentially, the main characters are forced to confront their pasts in order to survive their futures.
This movement away from toys and womanizing allows for a more intense understanding of who this hero truly is. But, if you still want to argue about this some more, then let’s reflect back on the era of Pierce Brosnan as 007. This was a time when there were gizmos and women a plenty and yet the tone was completely skewed. Rather than being mysterious and sexy the films came off as campy, presenting themselves as more of a farce than action film with any kind of substance.
Craig is able to stay true to the essence of his Bond, always orating with curtness and handing out one-liners like it’s nobody’s business. The audience has the great privilege of experiencing the rugged and detached secret service agent in a much more vulnerable light, and he still looks damn good.
For me, there are few that have honed their craft better than Dame Judi Dench. As MI6 begins to self-destruct, you watch in earnest as her character goes from a place of great command and prestige, to someone totally at the mercy of everyone around her.
Javier Bardem provides an unparalleled ‘tour de force’ as the menacing, bleach-blonde Silva who obsesses over M with such commitment and passion that it is truly a nightmare come to life.
His retelling of eerie childhood memories, uncomfortable sexual attraction to Bond, and total disregard for human life is what makes this character both cringe-worthy and absolutely intoxicating.
The only actor I didn’t care for was Naomie Harris as Eve Moneypenny. In fact, my feelings for her border on hatred. She pushed too hard at every turn, trying to become the kind of agent she could never be, while still attempting to project a certain wittiness and charisma with those infamous sexual undertones that Bond so enjoys. Maybe it was just the fact that her arms looked like she’d been doing Michelle Obama’s bicep routine that distracted me.
Despite the witty dialogue and jaw-dropping cinematography, my favorite part is when Silva came in on a chopper blasting John Lee Hooker’s “Boom Boom.” It sent chills down my spine and I couldn’t help but smile, knowing things were about to get real. Thanks to the no-nonsense style of the film, for a moment, you believe it actually could be.