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Subject: Skyfall - Nothing but spoilers! rss

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Ron
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Okay, so egged on by the amount of interaction that was had by my Prometheus thread, I have decided to start another thread to promote discussing the most recent James Bond film.

As always, your opinions may differ. Feel free to mock my opinion (or the movie) as you like. And don't worry about spoiler-tagging things. This entire thread is Spoiler-tagged.

1. The opening scene. Wasn't terrible. Only real complaint? Bond gets into a cab with glass sides, and only gets shot once by the machine pistol? Come on. Either have the assassin (who is apparently good enough to get 500K Euro fees) do the job right, or come up with a real reason for why he only hit him once. And don't say "the shovel got in the way". Have you ever even seen one of those? The bad guy had dozens of degree of arc of clear shooting.

2. Bond watches the assassin kill someone. Really? I have no idea who the other guy is, but it's painfully obvious that Bond's enemy is preparing to kill him. Enemy of my enemy is my friend? Or is that too old school for Bond?

3. Speaking of, why are you waiting to arm-wrestle this prick? You have a license to shoot someone, but not to kneecap him? Shoot him in the leg. He won't be able to fight you, and oh, look at that, you saved a life in the process. Two, actually, since your target, the assassin, WOULD HAVE LIVED.

4. The "palm reader" gun. Oh look. Another case of "I used Q's gadget one time, I can forget about it now." A. Pick up pistol. B. Get clear of Komodo dragon. (Yeah, yeah. I know Komodos can be fast. I didn't see Bond having any problem running the handful of times he needed to sprint, though.)

5. The boat. How'd he get on the boat? Okay. That's pretty minor. I get that. But did she know he was there? I dunno about you, but if someone gets into the shower with me, I at least take a moment to SEE WHO IT IS.

6. Bond can't outfight a single assassin, yet takes out 5-6 mooks in seconds. Sigh. Consistency, people. Can't you f*&^ing be consistent?

7. ... I can't remember the bad guy's name. Silva? Oh look. Another betrayed MI6 agent. I'm getting to where I can make a list of movies with 'evil government agents'. Who does their screening process? Temps?

8. Oh, and look, he was horribly disfigured by cyanide ... which has no effect whatsoever on the rest of the movie except to go "oh, evil face, must be evil man!"

9. The escape. Okay, you do not even want to go there. Who here thinks that the Joker's plan in "The Dark Knight" was even remotely plausible? Okay, now jack up the complexity and timing level to include "must be when M is at Westminster, and timed so that if I can drop a tram on Bond, it's available." Never mind that he had to expect a computer wizard in MI6, even though he's never heard of or met Q. And remember, it's not a "computer section", it's a wizard. Q said that only a handful of people could handle it, and then he started getting stumped by the mutable code (until Bond, who has no computer training at all, pointed out the street name). Argh. And don't even start on the street name as part of the code.
... Anyway, that entire escape plan was a big ball of fail. Yes, yes, the shootout in Westminster was fun, and it was cool to see Fienes actively get involved. Kudos. Everything leading up to that? Enormous ball of fail.

... okay. I'm breathing again.

10. The old Aston Martin. Shrug. Yay, cool. And in conjunction with the old Barry theme? Also cool. To anyone who hasn't seen the old Bond movies, it's a "huh?" moment. At least they referenced the car's gimmicks.

11. The Gun Room. "Sold off the lot, except for this one gun, that we couldn't get rid of." Why not? Who are you saving it for? You? Why? Eh. Another arguably minor point.

12. Field agent M. When the F*&^ did she learn all that? Can anyone point out a time when she talks about how she had to do all of this hard work in the field? All we ever get is when she in charge of this, or in charge of that. We also don't see Bond or Kincaid making any suggestions on how to do that kind of stuff. Miracle knowledge. Maybe instead of "I know kung fu", it's "I know guerrilla warfare".

13. Evil guy is a genius and a moron at the same time. The dude seizes an island. He hacks a secure network (which isn't actually possible, btw - they're on completely different networks). He makes genius code. Blah blah blah. They always harp on how awesome this guy is, yet he's too dumb to drop four guys with sniper rifles, one at each corner of the building (obviously, hundreds of yards away, not AT the building) and have them shoot every man that they see. After a while, they can go in, grab M, and he can torture/kill her easy. But no, wait until dusk, when they have no idea where they're going (in completely new territory, remember). And what the hell? Were the three 'heroes' sitting with guns every moment of the day? Or did the bad guys just happen to drive up with incredibly shitty timing? Come on. Anyway, horrible, horrible plan.
... As has been pointed out to me, people that are on a vengeance kick might not be the most clear thinkers, but he was a field agent for years. How can he not even consider this? No. _Must raze the building_. Sigh.

14. Anyway, continuing on. He's standing next to a 2 story blazing inferno. I dunno about you, but when that happens to me, my night vision is destroyed. Not "it's a little weak", it's COMPLETELY GONE. How in the f*&^ can he see a flashlight moving around 200 yards away behind bushes? Who is this guy, Steve Austin? He has a bionic jaw, not a bionic eye.

15. Bond chases after bad guy on ice. Okay, I'm relatively okay with that. Even though there were no signs of cold before that. I've ran on ice before. Shrug. Whatever. But when he runs into Silva, where in the hell did Henchmen number whatever come from? His back pocket? How did Bond not see / hear / realize that there was a guy running up RIGHT BEHIND HIM? He didn't pop out from behind a bush or a tree or anything. IT WAS A FIELD OF ICE.

16. Speaking of ice, isn't it nice to know that Bond can hold his breath for several minutes while in hand-to-hand combat? That's awesome. It'll help if he ever goes down on a woman in a jacuzzi, I suppose. Maybe that's where he got his practice, even.

17. Inside the chapel, Silva shoots at the door where Kincaid is standing. Where did the ricochet go? To the same place where my socks go when I dry too many at once and I lose a few? You could see in the cement that the crack was pointed at Kincaid, but no, it didn't rip clothing, hurt the amusing sidekick, or anything. Just "booga booga".

18. Moneypenny. Come on, who didn't see this coming? Wait. Rephrase. Out of all of the folks who have seen the old Bonds, who didn't see this coming? All this talk about "getting out of the field", no real / full names. Hello, captain obvious.

19. And in one amusing moment, Bond is back to how we first saw him as 007. In the office, Moneypenny outside, M inside, etc. It felt like a nice 'the circle is now complete' moment.

Again, I wanted to like this movie. I wanted to walk out just mesmerized by awesome it was. And I get that it's Bond. When was the last time I saw a 'realistic' Bond movie? (Hrm. Wait. Casino Royale was fairly straight-forward. Except for that whole 'rolling the car 17 times' bit.) Anyway, I was sad by how it just didn't feel like a Bond movie to me. Much more bs'ing, much less action, way fewer 'big set pieces' (that made sense). This is the first time I can think of where Bond is a rat in a trap and he has to defend himself. I understand that. I can name other movies where that's been cool. But it doesn't 'feel' Bond.

My loss, I'm sure. Shrug. Take it for what you will. Those are my two cents. YMMV.
 
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Ron
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Addendum. Elevator. Was I the only one that noticed that the elevator was for floors 48-72? Bond couldn't do a dozen pullups, but he can hold on to that for 48 floors or more while wearing heavier clothing? Yeesh. Adrenaline FTW, apparently.
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Jage
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My biggest problem:

We're going to lay a trail of false breadcrumbs to lead the bad guys to M. Ok, fine.

Then, we're going to take M there.

What? WTF? Why?

Why didn't Bond just leave her in some random apartment in London MI5 doesn't know about? And the go to the location with a bunch of agents with guns?

Why take M there at all? Makes absolutely no sense.
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Ron
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jageroxorz wrote:
My biggest problem:

We're going to lay a trail of false breadcrumbs to lead the bad guys to M. Ok, fine.

Then, we're going to take M there.

What? WTF? Why?

Why didn't Bond just leave her in some random apartment in London MI5 doesn't know about? And the go to the location with a bunch of agents with guns?

Why take M there at all? Makes absolutely no sense.


Yes! Another thing that I got shushed about!

The amusing thing is, watching the movie has made me ache to get to roleplay James Bond again, but only because I know how good it could have been.
 
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Val K
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linguistfromhell wrote:

14. Anyway, continuing on. He's standing next to a 2 story blazing inferno. I dunno about you, but when that happens to me, my night vision is destroyed. Not "it's a little weak", it's COMPLETELY GONE. How in the f*&^ can he see a flashlight moving around 200 yards away behind bushes? Who is this guy, Steve Rogers? He has a bionic jaw, not a bionic eye.


Steve Rogers is Captain America. I think you mean Steve Austin, the six million dollar man. Austin was the one with the bionic eye.
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Ron
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Valkerie32 wrote:
linguistfromhell wrote:

14. Anyway, continuing on. He's standing next to a 2 story blazing inferno. I dunno about you, but when that happens to me, my night vision is destroyed. Not "it's a little weak", it's COMPLETELY GONE. How in the f*&^ can he see a flashlight moving around 200 yards away behind bushes? Who is this guy, Steve Rogers? He has a bionic jaw, not a bionic eye.


Steve Rogers is Captain America. I think you mean Steve Austin, the six million dollar man. Austin was the one with the bionic eye.


D'oh. Totally correct. In my defense, I haven't watched any of the Bionic People shows since the 80s.
 
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Val K
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linguistfromhell wrote:

D'oh. Totally correct. In my defense, I haven't watched any of the Bionic People shows since the 80s.

No defense needed. When it comes to totally extraneous bits of useless information, I fact check/correct for free.
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Ms Aura

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People who saw this were so hyped and said it was great. I liked Casino Royale the best still.

I was confused why they needed the fake trail made when they were taking M there anyway as well. Whaaaa?

One of the things that bugged me is when M knew they were coming to kill her. And she just ignored it. Did she really just want to be killed right then and there?

I still liked it for what it. Was. But yes, was a little off for a bond movie, compared to Daniel Craig's other two.
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Maxwell Hallock
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It's reassuring to hear that I wasn't the only one who was a bit disappointed with Skyfall. I definitely appreciate it from a James-Bond-lore/now-we've-come-full-circle perspective, but it just didn't *feel* like a Bond movie.

I have been finding it hard, though, to pin down exactly what threw me off so much. The improbable escape from MI6 secondary headquarters certainly rubbed me the wrong way, but as linguist mentioned, the shootout in Westminster was definitely cool. Hmm... I may just have to watch it again.

It's a tough life we lead, eh?
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My main problem with it is that it doesn't seem like a Bond movie to me unless the bad guy has some sort of plan to destroy/conquer/blackmail big parts of the world. This guy just wanted to screw with M. Pfft.

I kept wondering what horrific evil plan he had that merited naming the movie 'Skyfall'. Then found out it was just the name of the place Bond grew up. Booooooring.

I don't regret watching the movie, but those two issues were disappointments.
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Goo
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Thread resurrection!

I just saw Skyfall last night, so I'm necro-ing this thread.

I only bitch about this movie because I see so much potential in Bond, but am time and again, let down. There is just so much promise in the character, history, possibilities, etc. So, when it falters just a bit, I'm bummed.

This is the only Bond movie I can think of where the bad guy wins. So, there's that. Bad guy set out to kill M___ and he did.

But linguist is right on with the complaint department. We suspend some disbelief for these kinds of things, but sometimes it asks too much.

My biggest complaint is that Bond is becoming Bourne or McClane. Just another trained fighter out there outwitting idiot bad guys.

Also, I'm not in love with the current aging spy themes. That is the theme of every superhero or remake of old stories. I'm tired of this whole, the world has moved on from your kind, you're too old now, oh wait old guy still has tricks. Yawn.
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Since you necro'd it, Goo, I'll see if I can resurrect my thoughts about this movie:

- This one was basically an homage to the 50 years of Bond which preceded it. Big plus.

- Don't ask them or me to explain how Bond is still going after 50 years of field work, looking like a __ year-old (someone can fact check Daniel Craig's age for me).

- Generally speaking, I like the fact that DC's version of Bond is less gimmicky and gets back to its trade work roots. Watch some of the old Sean Connery movies, and you'll see a Bond who spent more time talking and less time using laser watches and explosive fountain pens.

- Agree that DC is still more sabre than scalpel. Not a lot of finesse there, although he cuts a fine figure in a tux.

- I was happy about finding the old Aston Martin. Sad that it got obliterated. Incredulous that helicopter-mounted chain guns could rip the mansion apart and yet miss all of its inhabitants. That last one is par for the course.

- I enjoyed Dame Judy's portrayal of "M" as a strong female character. I suppose she needed to "retire" at some point. Ralph Fiennes is a good replacement, and as a plus he gets to have a nose in this story line.
 
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Goo
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Beowulf wrote:
- I enjoyed Dame Judy's portrayal of "M" as a strong female character. I suppose she needed to "retire" at some point. Ralph Fiennes is a good replacement, and as a plus he gets to have a nose in this story line.


Yeah, when I saw Fiennes' name in the opening credits, I was like, oh, that's weird because Javey is the bad guy. Then when I saw who his character was, I was like, Oh, so Dench is going to die and be replaced.
 
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