Skyfall has the advantage of being a Bond movie not stuck in Ian Fleming‘s time. The writers made the latest installment of 007 relevant to today’s war on terrorism, which is more identifiable to viewers than a maniacal madman trying to take over the world by taking over the moon. Skyfall also ties in the very real limitations of espionage and intel when faced with heavy government oversight and the threat of deep budget cuts. The audience is also gains deep insight into James Bond‘s childhood home and the back story on his childhood. I cannot dive into all the details without giving up the plot, but I will say that the interaction between Daniel Craig and Judi Dench as we see the deep, almost mother-son relationship between 007 and M is priceless. Bond’s childhood experiences help explain why he was selected as an agent under M. Add in the third wheel, Javier Bardem as Raoul Silva, as the antagonist with a connection to Dench’s M, and you have the makings of a very well thought out movie with just the right mix of classic Bond, new Bond, modern relevance, hottie Bond girls, funny one-liners, interesting bad guys, and mind blowing action. This is easily the best movie of the year, which really is not saying much given the terrible movies that have been released in 2012. Skyfall is now #4 in my list of favorite Bond movies. 5/5 stars.
My updated list of top Bond movies:
- Goldfinger (1964). Bond: Sean Connery. Bond girls: Pussy Galore (Honor Blackman), Jill Masterson (Shirley Eaton). Villain: Auric Goldfinger (Gert Frobe), Oddjob (Harold Sakata). Memorable quotes: “Do you expect me to talk? No, Mr. Bond; I expect you to die!”
- From Russia With Love (1963). Bond: Sean Connery. Villain: Rosa Klebb (Lotte Lenya), Kronsteen (Vladek Sheybal), Red Grant (Robert Shaw). Bond girls: Tatiana Romanova (Daniela Bianchi). Memorable quotes: “My orders are to kill you and deliver the Lektor. How I do it is my business. It’ll be slow and painful.”
- Casino Royale (2006). Bond: Daniel Craig. Villain: Le Chiffre (Mads Mikkelsen)
Bond girls: Vesper Lynd (Eva Green), Solange (Caterina Murino), Valenka (Ivana Milicevic). Memorable quotes: “It doesn’t bother you? Killing all those people? Well I wouldn’t be very good at my job if it did.”
- Skyfall (2012). Bond: Daniel Craig. Villain: Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem). Bond Girls: Sévérine( Bérénice Lim Marlohe).
- The Spy Who Loved Me (1977). Bond: Roger Moore. Villain: Karl Stromberg (Curt Jurgens), Jaws (Richard Kiel). Bond girls: Major Anya Amasova (Barbara Bach), Naomi (Caroline Munro).