“Quantum of Solace” would be a good action-drama, if only it weren’t a Bond film.
Daniel Craig’s second performance as James Bond picks the up the action from the moment “Casino Royale” leaves off, and that’s the problem.
Director Marc Forster (“Monster’s Ball”) correctly assumes that viewers of “Solace” already saw the previous film and know what’s going on. He seems to forget, however, that fans of “Casino Royale” who are sitting for “Quantum of Solace” are looking for James Bondish elements to the movie. There are none. Except for the good-as-always performance of Judi Dench as “M,” you would never know this was a Bond film.
Starring: Daniel Craig, Olga Kurylenko, Mathieu Amalric, Jeffrey Wright, and Judi Dench
Seen at: Showcase Cinema De Lux at Patriot Place
Running time: 105 minutes
That alone is enough to ruin a supposed 007 film. No MI6 headquarters moments. No Moneypenny. No Q Branch. No new watch. No cars with machine guns and missiles. No sex scenes (the redhead didn’t count). Was this a Bond movie or not? Was this the British import we Americans have come to love and honor, or has the series finally succumbed to the reality of American film stupidity where explosions and kill-shots rule supreme over plot?
There wasn’t even a decent Bond villain. The so-called and so-dead “bad guy” was a hapless little dweeb who never really posed much of a threat. Even the boilerplate evil general seemed vapid and undeveloped.
He doesn’t even say “The name’s Bond, James Bond” in the entire movie.
END SPOILER ALERT
It seems to me that you could have tacked this movie onto the special features of “Casino Royale” and bottled it down to a half hour.
Ukrainian beauty Olga Kurylenko is the latest Bond girl, Camille. Kurylenko slept through her role and failed to sell her revenge-driven rage character line. She may be the worst bond girl ever.
The real Bond girl in this movie was Miss Fields, (the redhead) wonderfully portrayed by 22-year-old Brit, Gemma Arterton, who should have had a much more prominent role in the movie. She gives the best performance in the film and gets about five minutes on screen for her troubles.
The movie is driven by the subplot of a far-reaching evil organization, reminiscent of early Bond films, but we never truly get a picture for what that organization is. It, like most of the movie, gets swept under the rug to make room for someone getting killed in every other scene.
There is an interesting scene where Camille and Bond try to parachute out of a falling plane and end up walking in the desert in a tuxedo and black cocktail dress. You almost get the hint that you’re watching 007 in action, but then you shake your head and wake up. No.
Cinematography-wise, “Quantum of Solace” is a very good movie and well-made, even with purposefully jerky camera moves.
It’s just not a Bond movie, and if it’s really to be billed as such, then “Quantum of Solace” is the worst Bond movie ever made.