by Ama Debrah
Break out your tuxedos and martinis! Bond’s back in the twenty-third installment in the James Bond series: Skyfall. Skyfall also marks Daniel Craig’s third venture as Bond, and continues the series’ exploration into the early origins of 007. Unlike Quantum of Solace, the story of Skyfall stands on its own, and is not the direct continuation of the story started in the critically acclaimed Casino Royale.
In Skyfall, Craig’s considerably grittier Bond is called upon once again, after a disk containing the names and secret identities of all the field agents in MI6 ends up in the wrong hands. However, after an MI6 agent accidentally shoots down Bond on a mission, Bond must struggle to repossess some of his old stamina and grapple with the fact that he is no longer as young as he once was. Skyfall has many references to the quintessential moments and characters that Bond fans have come to know and love: the reemergence of a much younger Q, Bérénice Marlohe as the doomed Bond Girl, the reappearance Bond’s classic Aston Martin DB5 from the 1964 film Goldfinger, and even the re-introduction of a previously forgotten Bond character.
However, the most appealing aspect of the film is its rich plot. After the lackluster Quantum of Solace that lacked a coherent, engaging plotline, Skyfall makes several new revelations about Bond’s childhood and upbringing, and also deals frankly with Bond’s fraught and tumultuous relationship with the character “M.” Actor Javier Bardem also does an incredible job as Silva, a former MI6 agent gone rogue with a major grudge against M, and Dame Judi Dench reprises her role of M for the seventh, and possibly best, time.
That being said, the action sequences are also notable, and Bond pulls off some of his most mind-bending and impressive stunts to date. Although some of the scenes—namely, when Bond leg-locks a bad guy in the freezing water of a frozen lake and then swims after the dead body to grab his gun and blast a hole through the ice to escape—are completely implausible, it’s all part of the fun of watching a Bond film.
Although Skyfall may not have achieved the perfection that is Casino Royaleor Goldfinger, Skyfall is a solid Bond film that is sure to become another classic and continue the franchise’s string of greatness.
Ama is a junior at Barnard and the Features and On Campus Editor for The Nine Ways of Knowing.