“Skyfall” (2012) Movie Review
I’m going to get straight to the point with my review of “Skyfall”. To me, this latest Bond journey was as much a break from the typical Bond flick as it was a slightly above-average action film. The film manages to take some risks, but still manages feeling pretty conservative in much of its execution, with a plot and villain that just don’t quite feel that compelling.
Looking at the plot, “Skyfall” tries to create a more personal Bond tale. While the film starts out with a more personal feeling, by its midpoint, it had lost this touch for me. For me, there was potential for what could have been the most interesting conflict in any Bond film (between Bond and M). The opening sequence presents this as a possibility, but just shortly after the opening credits, this conflict becomes abandoned – patched up effortlessly to allow Bond to begin his mission to take on the newest Bond villain (played by the talented Javier Bardem). Speaking of the villain, one of the central pieces of a Bond film is its villain. While Javier Bardem does much to bring his character to life, the villain’s actual story wasn’t anything too special. Overall, the plot for me was merely average, full of many action film clichés and many contrived twists.
One area that the film really succeeds in is its visuals. In particular the opening credit sequence is stunning in its artistic execution. The main film sections themselves showcase a nice mix of color schemes, from the drab/sleak mix in the underground MI6 base, to its varying landscapes, to the dreary Skyfall sequences. Alongside the visuals, the cinematography is also quite nice, capturing all the action with some interesting angles.
Another successful area is the soundtrack. There is some great musical work behind the action, nicely capturing each changing situation. The main “Skyfall” theme is also quite good and seems to excellently fit the theme of the film. Still, I can’t help but feel Adele could have done better with the vocal work. Don’t get me wrong, I think she has a great voice, but it just seems like she isn’t letting it all out here, like she’s holding something back that could have really made the theme special.
Moving on, I want to quickly mention the acting. Javier Bardem does excellent work as mentioned previously. He really manages to take an underwhelming villain and make him much more intriguing than he would have been had a less skilled actor portrayed him. Daniel Craig offers another solid performance as the central agent, James Bond (I happen to think Craig is one of the best Bond actors). The supporting cast manages to keep up alongside the central characters and help flesh out the characters nicely.
Overall, “Skyfall” is a decent action film, and clearly a 007 adventure. It strays from the Bond mold – but while some of these changes are refreshing, the film misses out on much of its potential. For 007 fans and action-loving moviegoers, “Skyfall” should have a good amount to offer. Just don’t go in expecting a revolutionary Bond adventure or an exceptional action film.
Final Score: 6.5/10
I have to agree with Will on the majority of the positive points he makes about Skyfall, from the soundtrack and cinematography to the wonderful acting and visuals (however, unlike Will, I was somewhat disappointed in the opening scenes). They all really came together to make this film a wonderful action movie that was able to hold your attention with more than just explosions and fight scenes, but a wonderful, fresh storyline as well.
Movies of this length can rarely capture my attention the entire time, but there were very few instances in this case that I got distracted or bored. I loved the storyline with the relationship of M and Bond, the villain and Bond as well as the more minute relationships between other characters. This modern Bond film is a fresh take on an old story and was really enjoyable for me. I would highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good action movie with a storyline that is deeper than the surface. Let us know in the comments if you agree or disagree with either of us and what you though of the latest film in the Bond journey, “Skyfall.” (All I can hear in my head when I say that is the wonderful title theme that Adele co-wrote and sung for the movie – it truly captured the essence of the film!)
Final Score: 8.3/10