Easily, by far the worst Bond film yet, truly awful, with almost nothing going for it. What turned out to be Brosnan’s last Bond film this should have been much better, but right from the start we were dreading it would turn out like this.
Let’s see where they went wrong- Plot: Tries to be smart, ends up making little sense. A blatant attempt at pandering to today’s younger audiences, and succumb to the modern definition of cool. This involves retro stuff- nods to past films, updated technology, stupid looking cars and modern music etc. This may have always been the way with the series, but here it just goes too far and ends up looking horrendous. Script- Nothing but innuendo. Nothing. No attempt at anything else, more akin to a Carry On movie than a Bond movie. Music- Madonna’s ‘song’ is the worst Bond song ever, by a long way. Bad Guys- Some guy who fences, and some other guy with a strange face. Neither pose any threat, neither seem evil, not worthy of a spot in Eastenders. Girls-Madonna’s pointless cameo further reduces her status to inglorious levels, once an interesting artist, now some woman you would avoid on the street. Halle Berry as Jinx, yes she’s pretty, but an average actress, flavour of the month, and a very weak character obviously created in the hope of a spin off. She is apparently a strong female character because she knows how to kick people, use a gun and show off her body-well done, i’m sure intelligent women around the world are enamoured by her. Miranda Frost- instantly forgettable character and Pike’s performance is pretty bad too, hamming up the terrible dialogue. She is only there so Bond can have a ‘steamy’ scene. Stunts, action, gadgets- Probably the best part, there are plenty of set pieces, and the intro is pretty good. But some dodgy CG, combined with the other faults mean the experience of watching is hollow, we do not feel any excitement or tension. All that remains is a series of explosions flashing in front of our already switched off minds.
So, where to now for Bond? Rumours of a younger reincarnation did the rounds after this film- that would have surely brought in tonnes of cash, but would probably mean more teen fluff. Contrary to what many believe, Bond is a character of great depth and emotion, he is not just a guy who shags women and saves the world. He is a haunted, lonely figure, at odds with himself and his actions, with a tragic past, but the fact he must do his job means he will never escape. Remember Goldeneye?- Bond-‘It’s what keeps me alive’, Natalya- ‘No, it’s what keeps you alone’. We see nothing of the real Bond in this attempt at a film. Only Cleese, Dench etc rescue it slightly.
I tend not to write negative reviews here, as I do not want to spend any time writing about things I dislike (as I will have already wasted time watching, reading, or listening to it in ther first place) but as I am reviewing all of the Bond films I had to bring myself to typing this. The film-makers needed to seriously rethink what they have done here, and what they should do to this much loved character in the future. Luckily, they succeeded with the brilliant Casino Royale. This however, is a hideous film by any standards- an overly camp mess devoid of structure, a kick in the face of the franchise, and more like a straight to DVD action film starring Big Brother rejects.
I only give this 2 stars because the extra features are good, although strangely they are inferior to the 1 disc Special Edition. It seems the disease caused by the film has spread to the DVD.
Feel free to comment on the movie and the review- was I too harsh and is this one of the better Bonds of recent times? Check out my other Bond reviews in the DVD section.