Licence to Kill
, but by a teeny tiny margin. I absolutely adore both films and could watch them a million times. (And Timothy Dalton is so intense in the role, it's nearly addictive).
As a little bit of background: I grew up during the Brosnan era, so for most of my life Brosnan has been Bond to me. The first film I saw was the one with the awful Madonna theme song, but I've seen all four plenty times through the years and am well acquainted with them. There was something in the movies that didn't quite click with me though, as handsome and Bond-esque as Brosnan was, I always felt he was a bit too smug and detached for my taste, as though he was floating through the films, nothing truly fazing him.
Dalton hadn't registered on my radar because he came immediately before my pre-teen years. I was an 8 year old girl when LTK came out so of course I wouldn't have seen it (what can I say, I come from a very conservative household). A bazillion years later, I finally came across his two films and I was immediately hooked. Dalton is the perfect blend of.. everything. In TLD I liked the more romantic angle, the sweeping glamour of the locations, the soundtrack (which I own and could listen to over and over), the very British flavor, it's all wonderfully Bond.
However I enjoyed LTK a little more just because I am a sucker for darker themes, and seeing Bond go rogue truly gave me the chills, in a good way. That goes to show that he is human, he has feelings, passions... and boy, did I feel them all through the film. I agree with whoever said that the pacing in LTK was very well done and uber tight, as the suspense is always there. I was always on the edge of my seat, and most of all.. I CARED about what happened. I wanted to see Della and Felix avenged, I rejoiced (rather sadistically) in the final payback scene with the lighter. It was such poetic justice and so cathartic. I don't get this whole "Miami Vice" rhetoric I keep hearing, perhaps because I am not influenced by that now. I didn't watch it at the cinema when it first came out so my view is completely and solely based on the movie itself and not on drawing any comparisons to any other flicks that were around at the time. I was able to appreciate it for what it is, not for how it looks in relation to other things. I also don't get those comments saying it looks low budget. It looked perfectly good to me. Cinematography, editing, all of it. I didn't have a problem at all with any of that. Perhaps TLD looks more beautiful, but that doesn't mean LTK is crap. Maybe I was just so engrossed in what was actually going on that I didn't feel the need to nitpick at all. I also don't get the criticism toward the villain being a druglord. Davi was such a great villain, superbly acted and so realistic he truly creeped the hell out of me. Those interactions in his mansion with Bond? I cringed for Bond because I was SO worried he was in real peril and yet I was dazzled by how well Bond kept his cool in the face of such evil.
By contrast, I saw QoS for the first time recently too, and that I have to say was way darker, grittier and humour-less than LTK. At no point was I smiling in delight, at no point was I truly caring about what happened. Don't get me wrong, I still think it's a decent action flick, but it feels so generic it could have been anybody else instead of Bond. Crash-bang-crash. (and no, I don't hate Craig, I think he is a good actor, I just didn't engage with QoS the way I engaged with LTK, not even close).
Edited by IcedCamaro, 27 September 2012 - 12:17 AM.