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Saturday, November 15, 2008

Quantum of Solace: Bond, A Very Pissed-Off Bond

Guess where I've been? ;-)

Who would walk out of the desert with a beautiful lady, still in a tuxedo, after falling out of an aeroplane WITHOUT a parachute and climbing out of a deep cavern in dress shoes, and manage to remain kissably cool?

Yup. It's him, Mr. Bond, uberest spy of them all.

I've never seen a Bond this angry and I like it. Quantum of Solace wasn't just about the SeKrit ProJek but also the state of mind. Of Bond's, that is. Pissed-off, he is, more so than devastated, like everyone's telling him, about the death of Vesper, his lover from Casino Royale. There were a few moments of angst, but really, this movie projected his regret and loneliness more so than of pain. All the secondary characters, from M to the old friend, told him that he had this "angst about lost love" problem but me, I don't buy it. Mr. Bond was just very, very pissed-off at having been tricked.

The action sequences were breathtaking, especially the beginning one, with its Bourne Ultimatum-like chase. It also reminded me for some reason of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon's relentless one-on-one chases, with hero and bad guy(s) able to fly through the air and escape bullets while performing Olympic-calibre body twists. Of course, the sport of spying meant lots of bloody bodies left in Bond's wake. It's interesting to see this other Bond. A pissed-off Bond, it seems, doesn't have the last second smarmy snarky repartee; attack him and you die.

You can actually see the difference by comparing the earlier kills with that of the last scene which was trademark Bond-As-We-Know-In-Later-Movies. Here, no-longer-pissed Bond obligingly released our bad dude in a way that guaranteed a bad ending, with a final very smarmy snarky repartee that included a can of motor oil (you'll understand the significance when you watch the movie).

Like I said, this Bond is different and I like it. It's pre-Bond, so everything that suggested to us of the uber-spy we know held significance. His smooth transition from thug by just wearing a stolen tux. His first taste of a drink for which he didn't have a name. The uber-alpha thing about him that made the women all weak-kneed and willing to help him, in spite of orders to the contrary, as noted by his boss, M, at the end.

I think Bond said this line twice: "I don't think the dead cares about vengeance." He meant it, even though the other characters didn't understand its significance. He wasn't avenging the deaths of the dead because he cared or he was hurting. He was just Pissed-Off. Vengeance is for the living, as demonstrated so effectively by Bond Babe, Camille, in the movie. His superior kept questioning the point of it all, if uber-spies just killed the enemy without any reason. To this Bond, at this moment, if nothing else, it was a quantum of solace, a measure of comfort.

Umm yeah. Enough character study!

Shallow observation: What I don't like about the movie? One nano-sec of a shirtless Bond. ONE! WTF? Solace is fine, but next time, movie-makers, more skin, less tux, por favor. Plus: Fantasies of chewing on Craig's lower lip are mounting. Yes, I said mounting.

Snickeristic Bond Babe Name: Agent Strawberry Fields. Bwahaha.

Alas note: Amy Winehouse should have sang the theme song. Alicia Keyes just didn't exude that world-weary sexuality. The song was horrible, actually.

Bestest scene: Opera house, when Bond interrupted the very unique conversation among some power players AND got them to show their faces. So uber-Alpha, so Bond, so what I lurve about Uber-Spy Tactics ;-).

Last note: The usual Bond and crosshair moving to the Bond music theme sequence didn't show up till the very end of the movie. To me, that signifies the "arrival" of the Bond-that-we-know. So STOP complainin', people. Your usual Bond bonbons are coming.

So, did you see the new Bond movie? Like or not?

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Alicia said...

Loved it too. Craig was great and I love his intensity. Only thing I think was lacking was a truly good villain. This dude was too metrosexual, know what I mean?

Vanessa said...

I love this movie, i couldn't take my eyes off the screen. i felt so sorry for agent Fields though poor girl.

media boy said...

Quantum of Solace is entertaining at least... a lot of high quality visuals, but the movie as a whole could stand to lose six or seven fewer chase scenes

Pamela B said...

Haven't seen this one yet. But I'll somehow manage breastfeeding, babysitting and family crisis issues before it leaves the big screen. Because if I only get one second of bare-chested Bond, it'd better be a very LARGE one second.

If you know what I mean. ;-)

But I will say this about the previous movie:

It's ALL about The Tuxedo. That thing should have won its own Oscar. (I keep meaning to track down that designer and write her a letter.)

Pre-Tuxedo: interesting guy with a familiar name.

Enter Tuxedo: Pam can't breathe.

vanessa jaye said...

We haven't seen it yet, but sometime this week for sure. Great mini review.

Gennita said...

Media Boy,

Agreed about the chase scenes. I think there were just too much country-hopping, actually. The plot kind of got lost there, but then I've never really paid close attention to any of the Bond Megalomaniac Plot (never made sense to me).

I think I liked this one better than the others because it's more character-driven. One actually got to know more about M here. Her bathroom! Her taking off her makeup!

Gennita said...

Pamela B,

You are so darn right. He is Mr. Tuxedo. But then, you'd better look good in a $5000 tuxedo. ;-)

But that one second? Was soooo worth it. Because the man does have some nice abs (not overworked, but still, caught my attention) and the bod showed the scars of a warrior. I still think about that one second.


Let me know whether you enjoyed it, Vanessa Jaye! And please be gentle with your Red Pen of Lechery. ;-)


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