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“How long have we got?” The James Bond blogs: ‘Quantum of Solace’ (2008)

11 Nov

Quantum of Solace is a James Bond film that wants us to forget it’s a James Bond film. Whereas Casino Royale raised our expectations of what a modern Bond film could be, Quantum of Solace seems almost embarrassed to be in the company of the franchise’s other entries; as if it’s determined not be in any way formulaic or even representative of the series. On one hand this sounds a refreshing proposition; why should a new Bond film be a slave to past expectations and practice? What Quantum of Solace actually does is throw us uncompromisingly and suddenly into the action from the very first scene, and takes bold risks within its economical running time (Quantum harks back to the punchier duration of Dr. No or Goldfinger). These ‘risks’ with the overall presentation, render the film unlike most entries in the series. Difference is often a very good thing, and is welcome, as we’ve seen before with On Her Majesty’s Secret Service and Casino Royale, to name but two. But alienating your audience in the pursuit of being different, and sometimes sacrificing a clear narrative, is not welcome at all. Continue reading

“The bitch is dead now”. The James Bond blogs: ‘Casino Royale’ (2006)

1 Sep

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As with Timothy Dalton before him, Pierce Brosnan’s tenure as 007 was cut short by circumstances largely out of the lead actor’s control. Although Brosnan had fulfilled his contract for three films and an option on a fourth (which he did fulfil with Die Another Day), the actor was in talks for a fifth instalment, and the general consensus was that the cinema going public would like to see him return in a fifth instalment as well. Continue reading