Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Skyfall trailer review

In a year which we should all be proud of being British what with The Queens Jubilee, Wimbledon and the London Olympics, it would appear to be the perfect time to release the new Bond film titled Skyfall. Yet the landscape of the action film have changed since the glory days of James Bond.

When Bond first appeared on our screens back in 1950s he was unique in films. Ian Fleming's literature character was born on screen and Bond's suave manner, womanising personality matched with his ability to defend Queen and country startled the country. Men wanted to be him and women wanted to be with him and this has pretty much been the same story for half a century now. But back in the 2002 Matt Damon starred in The Bourne Identity, an action film adapted from Robert Ludlum's popular series with two sequels, The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum both directed by respected director Paul Greengrass. Damon's portrayal of a secret agent washed up on a trawler boat was explosive. Not only was Matt Damon's Jason Bourne a weapon of mass destruction but he expressed traits that Bond never could. Bond reeked of Etonian swagger and Martini drinking cockiness but Bourne was vulnerable, realistic and easily relate-able because, despite his skills, he was normal. While Bond used a gun, Bourne used a Biro. Its clear to see the effect the Bourne films have had on the Bond films. None so more then the casting of Daniel Craig in Martin Campbell's Casino Royale (2006). Craig took over from the comical Pierce Brosnan who appeared to be realising Bond films quicker than Greengrass' editing. One noticeable thing that sets apart Brosnan and Craig was they are both physically different. Where as Brosnan was typically handsome, its hard to see these traits in the rugged, rough look of Craig. As well both takes of the same character were spectrums apart as Brosnan's Bond seemed sharper than the suits that he wore, yet Craig's Bond was a renegade and rules no longer applied to the secret agent. Casino Royale changed the story of Bond too, regenerating the character and wiping the dust of the formulated structure that allowed Bourne to be supreme. Craig's Bond promised fans a different take on the character and Casino Royale was a tour-de-force of style and action, exactly what fans wanted. However this renaissance was short lived with Marc Foster's horrendously boring sequel to Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace (2008). The story arc that was continued and finished in Foster's take on Bond failed to keep old of the baton in the relay of Bond. Its stamina was poor and bored audiences.

However, Foster's failure could be Sam Mendes' success. In this year of Union Jack bunting James Bond is being resurrected from the dust (again) and it appears to have learnt from its Solace mistakes. The new trailer released today allows us to view the new Bond, a post-Bourne Bond and oh my Bonds come with a bang. The story seems to be centred around the character M, Bond's boss and head of MI6. M's mistakes have caused dangerous ripples in the world of Bond as we see him being taken out and apparently killed. Of course Bond is not dead and he comes back with a bang and faces the brilliant Javier Bardem's villain Silva. I'm not sure if somewhere in Bardem's contract but he appears to sport some impressively terrible haircuts, don't believe me just watch the Coen's No Country for old men. Much like Bond, Bardem's villain is a new breed in a new era. In the words of Silva himself the whole idea of world domination is "old fashioned". Mendes' participation in Bond is a clear sign they are aiming for a more mature film, far from Bronsan's 1990's bond, and it really seems to have worked with the trailer exhibiting some excellent directing and the fast editing that made Greengrass' Bourne a formidable force of cinema. As well they have re-introduced Q with a new actor, Ben Whishaw, seems to be on excellent form. Although Bond may not use a Biro to take out his enemies, the participation of Mendes, the new imaging and Whishaw's Q seems to be enough to regain the sense of pride in Britain's Bond.

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