Skyfall (2012) starring Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris directed by Sam Mendes Movie Review

Skyfall (2012)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Daniel Craig in Skyfall (2012)

Mother, Just Killed a Man

When a hard drive containing the real identities of all NATO spies is stolen James Bond (Daniel Craig) is on the job and giving chase in Istanbul. But M (Judi Dench) fearing that Bond may not succeed orders MI6 operative Eve (Naomie Harris) to take the shot only for her to hit Bond on the roof of a speeding train over a high bridge leading to him falling to his death. This puts the pressure on M as those above her such as Mallory (Ralph Fiennes) think it is time for her to graciously retire. But things are just about to kick off as someone attacks the MI6 offices via a cyber attack leading to MI6 falling into disarray. Fortunately Bond isn't dead and whilst still in physical pain from his injuries and psychological pain from hearing M ordering Eve to take the shot he returns to save his country and as it turns out protect M when they learn that it is former agent Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem) who is behind the attack as he has a grudge to settle with M.

As "Skyfall" started and we are presented with a full on action set piece which included motorbikes ridding along roof tops, flying through windows and then a battle on a speeding train which involves construction equipment I groaned. It was ridiculously over the top, even more over the top than the action of the Roger Moore era and for a while I was contemplating walking away as whilst a fan of James Bond I hate it when they make Bond a super hero agent who can do the impossible.

Javier Bardem in Skyfall (2012)

But then "Skyfall" changed and whilst we have what in many ways is a typical James Bond movie which features everything from a psycho with a vendetta to Q, well a new Q with a dry wit we get something extra. That extra is we are taken into the psyche of both James and M as we get to know both of them a bit more. In the case of M we learn about her spirit to not be a failure, the tough decisions she has taken for the good of MI6 and the country and that sense of guilt she has carried deep inside when it comes to some of the things she has had to do. I know some hated this but for me it made "Skyfall" more interesting especially when in hindsight you consider how the story plays out.

But as I said we also get to go more into the mind of Bond from his thought process when it comes to word association but also what happened to his parents. We also get the interesting aspect of after hearing M order Eve to take the shot it affected how he felt about her. There is a sense of betrayal which leads to pain which adds to the physical pain and as we see Bond hitting the drink but also the pain medication. Again I know there were those who really didn't want this and just wanted action man Bond but again I really enjoyed getting to understand Bond, his pain, his resentment and learning a bit about his childhood.

Anyway for those who disliked all this psycho analysis business "Skyfall" delivers some old style action and creativity when it comes to the climax with Bond and M going a bit MacGyver in the way they defend themselves in Bond's childhood home.

What this all boils down to is that "Skyfall" is different to previous Bond movies as it tries to be more than just action and instead give us an insight into Bond and those around him. For me it is an improvement on "Quantum of Solace" but not quite a great movie.