Skyfall fails to reach great Bond heights

MOVIE REVIEW

REVIEWED BY SHAUN YEO
Last updated 11:42 26/11/2012
James Bond
MR BOND: Daniel Craig back as Bond for a third time in Skyfall.

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Skyfall. Starring Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes. Directed by Sam Mendes.

Skyfall is the latest roll-out from the James Bond franchise in what is the famous spy's 50th year on the big screen. Much has already been said in the past few months regarding 007's half-century in film and I think some of the hype has rubbed off on this movie.

Sad to say but it's not all it's cracked up to be - and being a Bond fan myself I feel somewhat sacrilegious in saying that.

The elements are all there to make this one of the greats but it falls well short of where some critics are placing it.

I tried really hard to like this movie and I did come away satisfied but I was hoping for something more. Maybe a better way to put it is that this is a good Bond movie but it falls well short of being a great film.

The plot is slow and slightly muddled, MI6 is under attack and James Bond's (Daniel Craig) boss M's (Judi Dench) life is on the line as her past comes back to haunt her. Step up 007, who must track down and disable the threat.

The story starts well enough but just when you think it's beginning to take off it dips and begins to plod, culminating in a climax that is anything but - featuring a very un-Bond-like shootout.

That being said, there is still much to enjoy. Craig is once again superb and has to be seriously pushing Sean Connery for the mantle of best Bond.

The acting is sublime, with Javier Bardem the standout as the crazed villain. Dench hands in her usual stellar performance and there is a top-notch cameo from Ralph Fiennes.

The whole thing looks great with exotic locations contrasting nicely with the rain-washed streets of London.

Also, there are some nice touches for 007 connoisseurs to enjoy, notably the reappearance of his Aston Martin DB5 and the fleshing out of the main character's backstory.

There is no doubt Bond fans will enjoy this movie but I couldn't help wondering what non-fans would think. My guess is they'd be left scratching their heads wondering what all the fuss is about - maybe shaken, not stirred.

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- The Southland Times

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