James Bond

As long as I’m writing about major movie franchises, the new 007 picture, Skyfall, made $87 million this weekend.  Maybe the economy is getting better.

I’ve seen every Bond flick up to The World Is Not Enough.  They’re all basically the same, and so I haven’t felt any need to see the Daniel Craig installments.  They pretty much “reboot” the series with every movie, and especially with every new actor who plays Bond.  The Sean Connery ones were kind of neat because there was a plot thread that (sort of) continued from movie to movie, but that got abandoned.  (The downside of the Connery ones is that they contain the most sexism, and sometimes misogyny–not to say that any of them are exactly triumphs of feminist ideals.)

I think in almost every movie after From Russia With Love there’s a bit where Bond fights a helicopter.  It’s quite predictable. Another trope they use is to have him running on some sort of metal walkway with a railing, and the bad guys always fire machine guns at him and all the bullets miraculously hit the railing!  So ludicrous, and so predictable.

I’ve also played the video games of The World Is Not Enough, Goldeneye, Agent Under Fire, Nightfire, and From Russia With Love.  They are all okay, but nothing outstanding.  I’ve never read any of the books.

One problem I have with Bond is that the films are almost all too far-fetched and incredible.  It’s really much closer to being a fantasy/superhero series than an action/thriller series.   But it’s not quite all the way into fantasy, because–except maybe for the stupid voodoo one–it mostly rejects magic as a plot device.  It’s a weird middle ground, and thus the “ground rules” of the Bond universe are not internally consistent.

Still, I guess they are decent action flicks if you like that sort of thing.  Personally, I prefer more intrigue and suspense and less physically impossible action sequences in my spy stories, which is why I’ve always liked the old series Danger Man, with Patrick McGoohan.

What's your stake in this, cowboy?