Skyfall (Sam Mendes – 2012) A-

The plot has some holes in it and the third act is a bit clunky at times. That’s about the only negative things I can say about the latest Bond film. It was a delight to watch after the four year hiatus. If we don’t count the blip that was Quantum of Solace, it’s been more like 6 years since the amazing Casino Royale, one of the best Bond films. This one is close to being an origin story of not just Bond, but also of the whole Bond universe as we knew it since Dr. No. We meet Q and Miss Moneypenny and an MI6 headquarters that looks more familiar. The action is great here from the opening scene all the way through to an insane helicopter-meets-mansion sequence in the end. The cinematography is just superb. Daniel Craig is great as Bond and especially as a slightly aging and rugged agent who might or might not be suitable for the job anymore. The bigger question is actually: Is MI6 as we know it needed anymore in the modern age? Judi Dench as M is at the center of the plot in this one and she plays her role perfectly, just like Bond, fighting for her existence and her decisions. The villain, Silva played by Javier Bardem, has to be one of the best Bond baddies. He’s a psychotic, effeminate, creepy magalomaniac who goes just far enough for a 007 villain but is not a caricature.

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