“The movie’s been out a week, and I feel so far behind. But I’m getting around now after the surgery. Yay me.

I very much love James Bond. I have seen them all, but they’re sorta blurred together since I marathoned ’em when the box sets came out a few years back. The Daniel Craig ones, however, do stand out a bit more for me since those are the ones I’ve actually seen in the theater. I think at this point, I do consider him my Bond of choice. I grew up always picturing Brosnan as Bond, but I will not argue with anyone who claims Connery. But I really like the darker edge that Craig gives, and he seems to put a lot more behind the character than ass kicking and woman laying.

After the misstep that was Quantum of Solace (yet another victim of the writers strike, filming off a draft script) Bond is back, baby. It was all there. The story, the cast, the action. How often I do or do not look at my watch is usually a good indictation of how engaging the film is. Once every half hour with a “”yeah I can keep going for that long”” instead of a “”ugh that much”” is a very good thing.

What really stood out to me about this one compared to the others is the extent of M’s involvement. EW’s Bullseye referred to Judi Dench as the ultimate Bond girl. I love that idea. She is one classy dame and brings so much weight to the franchise. Seeing her in such a big role instead of just a sidelined superviser was a treat.

That’s something else I love about Craig’s Bond. The girls aren’t just toys to him. They’re valuable assets. He had a real relationship with his girl in Casino Royale. Quantum featured the first Bond girl he didn’t sleep with. I loved the way he got along with Naomie Harris’s Eve. She was a useful partner, well except for one incident but it was kinda important, and their rapport was great. I was happy for every minute of her screentime. Our other Bond girl, Bérénice Marlohe, was more of your traditional bed and *spoiler* but her role wasn’t as big as some of the promos would lead you to believe. I’ll go with the argument that Dench’s M was the primary Bond girl and Harris the secondary. Cause it’s just better that way.

But what is Bond without a villain? Enter Javier Bardem. Kind of a testament to how awesome he is that he doesn’t make his entrance until halfway thru the movie, and yet that amount of screentime is enough for some to declare him one of the bestest ever Bond baddies. I’m starting to think that when it comes to Bardem, the worse his hair, the better the performance. His blond hair was just below his No Country hair, and the performance was around the same. That is to say it was phenomenal. There’s all this talk about whether or not his character is supposed to be gay. Even if it’s never expressly stated, the play around the idea was awesome and very different. His first scene with Bond was just breathtaking, and Craig played along brilliantly.

My favorite new (or is it old?) addition to the mix is Ben Whishaw as Q. After catching my attention in Cloud Atlas he became the quirky side character I live for in films. Instead of being a genius inventor, Q is now more of a genuius hacker, with the appropriate nerdy and sarcastic personality. Love! For me, his few interspersed scenes weren’t nearly enough, and this is something that makes me excited for Bond to continue.

You know what else makes me excited for Bond to continue? The last three minutes of the film. All I’m gonna say is that things got set up really well, and they continued to tie in more and more references for the longtime Bond fans. Yet another thing that’s fantastic about this flavor in the franchise. Lots of throwbacks. From a Shirley Bassey sounding theme from Adele (mixed feelings on the credits sequence, btw) to the return of the Astin Martin to the vigorously shaken martini, so many little things that made a big impact if you knew where to look. And that was the ultimate fun.

Skyfall – \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/

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