PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, and some sexual content
Nov. 14, 2008
Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Mathieu Amalric, Gemma Arterton, Olga Kurylenko
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Quantum of Solace
By Hannah Goodwyn
- Shaken, not stirred + Black-tie affairs (pun intended) + Explosive Ballpoint Pens + Sleek Aston Martins = MI6 agent 007, a.k.a. Bond, James Bond.
This icon has become part of pop culture, and will continue as long as these movies are made. And why should Hollywood stop? They make a killing at the box office.
Quantum of Solace (the 22nd Bond movie) could be considered the first Bond sequel. The story picks up where Casino Royale left off; actually, it’s only a few minutes later. The death of 007’s love, Vesper, is fresh in his heart, and revenge rules his mind. In fact, audiences may find QOS easier to follow if they revisit Casino Royale first.
The Movie in a Minute or Less
While searching for the truth behind Vesper’s betrayal, James Bond uncovers a dangerous organization known as Quantum. As 007 investigates, he’s soon threatened with its breadth and worldwide influence. Bond discovers a MI6 traitor, who leads him to Camille, a woman with her own agenda, and Dominic Greene, a business man behind Quantum. With his loyalties split, Bond must evade the CIA, terrorists, and even M, to accomplish a personal vendetta.
Good, Real Good
Wanting revenge for Vesper’s death, 007 will do whatever it takes to get to the truth. This doesn’t bode well for the enemies he’s tracking, but it does for moviegoers. Mind-blowing action starts in the first moments of Marc Forester’s Quantum of Solace. Jaws will drop at the sight of one killer car chase scene. Surprisingly enough, this is Forester’s first big action film. The award winning filmmaker is better known for his brilliant work on Finding Neverland and Monster’s Ball.
Skeptics weren’t too sure about a blond Bond with the introduction of Daniel Craig as 007 in Casino Royale. My hat’s off to the British talent for rebuilding a strong character in this cultural icon. He’s a much more serious version than in Bond movies past. Quantum of Solace finds him in a vulnerable place as he takes an emotional journey filled with vengeance and grief. Our favorite MI6 agent reminds audiences of an important lesson in this new flick. Revenge isn’t for those who are lost. Bond even admits, “I don’t think the dead care about vengeance.”
Daniel Craig’s dedication to making the film as real an experience as possible is evident in that he does most of his own stunts. The actor's willingness to get in on the action adds to the movie. The proof: his real-life injuries from filming. The intricately choreographed hand-to-hand combat and acrobatics featured in the rooftop chase bring pure action to the film. Though it’s a little reminiscent of moves from the Bourne movies, these sequences will keep action fans happy.
The MI6 gadgets in Bond movies are characters in and of themselves. Quantum of Solace is sans the loveable, gadget geek Q. But the movie doesn’t forsake unveiling a few hi-tech toys, including a table-top computer with touch screen capabilities like you’ve never imagined and a money tracker, which is scary.
Bond’s Bad Moments
If the “bad guy” isn’t believable, then the story can fall flat. Alas, Quantum of Solace lacks a bit in this category. Dominic Greene (played by acclaimed French actor Mathieu Amalric) isn’t compelling enough as Bond’s enemy. He’s got acting chops, but his villainy just doesn’t seem to translate well on screen. In fact, the supporting villains are scarier than him. Wanting to play up the cold-bloodedness of a villain by making him seem approachable, yet cruel is admirable. But, it just doesn’t come across in this character.
Bond’s main girl in QOS is Camille. A little on the feisty side, she knows how to take care of herself and is ready to do whatever’s necessary to avenge her family. Ukranian actress Olga Kurylenko, who plays Camille, takes on the character well, but fails to impress.
Although the storyline for this new Bond film is fairly solid, it does have a few holes. Unfortunately, it loses momentum. The ending isn’t bad, but it is forgettable. The plot transitions are illogical on a few occasions. At one point, Bond is cut off from MI6. His agency credit card is denied, yet somehow he’s able to travel to Italy. Suddenly, he’s there with no explanation connecting the storyline from point A to B. One other irking plot point is when a hotel fire leads to massive explosions. How convenient. There’s no logical setup; it comes out of nowhere and presents an unnecessary extreme climatic moment audiences are just supposed to buy.
A Cautionary Word or Two: In true Bond fashion, Quantum of Solace is rated PG-13 partly for its sexual content. The opening credits feature a naked woman’s silhouette as she moves through sand. Bond also partakes in his usual fling, offering a scene in the movie when he’s kissing a woman’s bare back in bed. An intense rape scene leads to audiences seeing up the victim’s skirt.
Hannah Goodwyn serves as a producer for LivingTheLife.com and CBN.com. She also writes regularly for these sites. For more articles and information, visit Hannah's bio page.
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