Daniel Craig is back after a four-year hiatus as James Bond
007 in Skyfall.
Ah, Mr Bond, we've been expecting you, but your latest
adventure has been one of the longest waits in your 50-year
career. Thankfully, after your previous misfiring Quantum of
Solace in 2008, the wait has been worth it.
Daniel Craig continues to carve his own legacy as 007, the
closest realisation yet of author Ian Fleming's vision of a
"blunt instrument wielded by a Government department", a
snarling, sweating, bleeding killer civil servant who appears
unstoppable, until the unthinkable, in the pre-title
Past the unusually disturbing title credits, Mr Kiss Kiss
Bang Bang seldom hits a wrong note in Sam Mendes' symphony of
espionage by explosions, balanced by Roger Deakins' beautiful
cinematography and the most personal story yet between Bond
and the only woman he respects.
A Bond movie lives or let dies on the strength of its villain
and bravo to Javier Bardem for not falling back, as feared,
on his Oscar-winning turn as the shark-eyed assassin in No
Country For Old Men.
Bardem's Silva is gleefully sadistic, ambiguous in all but
his thirst for vengeance and a relief from the Eurotrash
middle-management James Blond faced in Casino and Quantum.
Silva is his worthiest adversary since Sean Bean's Trevelyan
in GoldenEye almost 20 years ago.
Mendes, Craig, veteran writers Neal Purvis, Robert Wade and
John Logan, plus custodian producers Michael G. Wilson and
Barbara Broccoli have delivered not just a great Bond movie
with Skyfall, which instantly breaks into the top five
all-time greatest 007 adventures, but a great entertaining
movie for all. It is comforting Craig and Logan have signed
on for the 24th and 25th films in the franchise. Just do not
take so much time off next time.
The world is a duller place without Bond, James Bond.
Starring: Daniel Craig (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo),
Javier Bardem (Eat Pray Love), Judi Dench (The Best Exotic
Director: Sam Mendes (Revolutionary Road).
Screening: Reading Cinemas Queenstown, Friday, 11.45am,
1.45pm, 2.45pm, 4.45pm, 5.45pm, 8.45pm; Saturday to Wednesday
11.30am, 1.30pm, 2.30pm, 4.30pm, 5.30pm, 7.30pm,