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Critical reactions to Skyfall


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#811 The Shark

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 02:56 AM

If her presence is simply to show how ruthless Silva is, then I think it completely fails in that respect.  They hype up Silva as this horrific monster before he actually appears, and then once he does, he completely undermines all of the buildup.  That's not to say that Silva is a good man.  He's a very bad person, but they go out of their way to make him sound like he's the worst of the worst, to say that he's worse than the Draxes, the Blofelds, the Strombergs, the Trevelyans, etc. before him, when he's, at the very best, comparable to such villains rather than being head and shoulders above them in terms of how awful a person he is.

 

Hardly. All the "not like this, not like him" stuff does is show the Svengali-like effect her "employer" has on her. There's no faceless scenes before we truly see him, no holographic briefings to tell us how dangerous he is, or employees fed to sharks. Just a few ominous lines of dialogue, one of which is recycled from THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH. At best, we're led to believe he's more of a threat than Le Chiffre or Dominic Greene, who were small fish in the see.
 
FWIW, by her presence - I meant her overall character arc, and namely her fate. Arguably of the most chilling Bond scenes in recent memory.

 

The Severine character was either an attempt at shock value or an attempt to make it seem like they were touching on an important global issue.  It accomplished neither and her inclusion in the film is just a slight step above being completely unnecessary.

 
Severine was an attempt to harken back to the Bond femme fatales of yesteryear. Her inclusion in the film is necessary to show Bond's post-Vesper saga MO with women, and more importantly - something for us blokes to oggle at.



#812 tdalton

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 03:16 AM

If her presence is simply to show how ruthless Silva is, then I think it completely fails in that respect.  They hype up Silva as this horrific monster before he actually appears, and then once he does, he completely undermines all of the buildup.  That's not to say that Silva is a good man.  He's a very bad person, but they go out of their way to make him sound like he's the worst of the worst, to say that he's worse than the Draxes, the Blofelds, the Strombergs, the Trevelyans, etc. before him, when he's, at the very best, comparable to such villains rather than being head and shoulders above them in terms of how awful a person he is.

 

Hardly. All the "not like this, not like him" stuff does is show the Svengali-like effect her "employer" has on her. There's no faceless scenes before we truly see him, no holographic briefings to tell us how dangerous he is, or employees fed to sharks. Just a few ominous lines of dialogue, one of which is recycled from THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH. At best, we're led to believe he's more of a threat than Le Chiffre or Dominic Greene, who were small fish in the see.
 
FWIW, by her presence - I meant her overall character arc, and namely her fate. Arguably of the most chilling Bond scenes in recent memory.

 

Can't agree.  Part of the buildup was, of course, done by the marketing department, but even after throwing all of that out the window, Severine's mere presence in the film is a means to try to display Silva as this despicable individual.  We get enough buildup to that with his destroying of MI6, the outing of all of the NATO agents, his direct threats towards M, and all of that before we even get to Severine.  That's just one more thing to throw on top of the already despicable characterization of Silva (although he's still not the most despicable character in the film), by almost saying to the audience, "in case you didn't think he was really evil, look what he's done to this person as well".  It would have come off much better had they actually treated Severine like a real person instead of just throwing her away to show how big a bastard both Bond and Silva could be. 

 

The whole Severine character simply feels like lip service to an issue that they should have touched on in CASINO ROYALE.  You're right, it's a chilling scene, but for the wrong reason.  All Severine's death serves to accomplish is to show that there really isn't a character worth "rooting" for in SKYFALL.  M monumentally blows her chances at becoming the object of sympathy in the film, and Silva loses by default (obviously), and then we're left with Bond who shows himself to be almost as despicable as Silva in the way that he uses Severine.  I'd say that it's really more disgusting than chilling, and while it is something that harkens back to the novels in some way, it should have been offset with something that shows Bond's feelings towards killing in cold blood.  Yes, he didn't pull the trigger, but he's just as much responsible for Severine's death as Silva is.

 

The Severine character was either an attempt at shock value or an attempt to make it seem like they were touching on an important global issue.  It accomplished neither and her inclusion in the film is just a slight step above being completely unnecessary.

 
Severine was an attempt to harken back to the Bond femme fatales of yesteryear. Her inclusion in the film is necessary to show Bond's post-Vesper saga MO with women, and more importantly - something for us blokes to oggle at.

 

I see Severine more as them harkening back to the damsels in distress type characters that we see from time to time in the series.  They present Severine, at least in appearance, as a femme fatale, but she really isn't one.  They've already done the post-Vesper Bond girl to show Bond's new MO with women when they had Fields in QUANTUM OF SOLACE, so there really wasn't a need to further emphasize the point that Bond, in his post-Vesper world, simply uses women for whatever and then they're on their own.



#813 Dustin

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 08:21 AM


Sebastian Faulks ridicules 'distasteful' Bond film 'Skyfall'
Skyfall, the latest 007 blockbuster which was hailed by the critics as possibly the best James Bond film ever, has been ridiculed by the author of a recent Bond novel.

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The film, which was released in October, has taken more than a billion dollars at the box office and received rave reviews, including from The Daily Telegraph and the celebrated critic Philip French, who said it might be the best Bond film yet and marked the moment that its star Daniel Craig emerged from the shadow of Sean Connery.

Their claims were derided on Friday, however, by the award-winning writer Sebastian Faulks, author of the 2008 Bond novel Devil May Care, which was commissioned by the estate of 007's creator Ian Fleming in 2008 to mark the centenary of his birth.

His Bond became an instant best-seller and was praised by critics as one of the best of 33 sequels written since Fleming's death.

On Friday he criticised Skyfall's reviewers' and said he found the film distasteful in parts and marred by bad acting.

"I found the last film pretty distasteful. One [of the Bond girls] couldn't act and the other had been previously exploited as a sex worker. And Bond walks into the shower and makes love to her. Casino Royale was much better," he told an audience at India's Jaipur Literature Festival.

He disliked the aggressive promotion and merchandising for the film and said critics had shown a "fantastic degree of collusion" with the film's publicists to avoid spoiling its main shock - the death of M, played by Dame Judi Dench.

"The critics said it was one of the greatest Bond films, which is clearly not true. Albert Finney can't do a Scottish accent," he said.

While he was disappointed to see Dame Judi leave the role, and praised Ralph Fiennes' performance as her successor, he said both Skyfall and Quantum of Solace had made a error by attempting to portray the spy as a more human character with a richer inner life.

"The films' attempts to show a deeper and sensitive side to James Bond have not been successful because that's not how he works. He doesn't have much of an inner life and when you try to give him one the whole thing stalls," he said.

He had also tried to introduce a sense of introspection in 007 to break up the unrelenting action sequences, but he quickly abandoned it. "I thought I would invest him with some serious thoughts. It didn't work. It was unconvincing. It made him look not thoughtful but slightly gay," he added.

The author said a greater interest in books would have indicated a deeper character, but in the whole Bond canon he is only seen reading once - and his literary choice is a guide to modern golf.

Bond's charm is in the balance between his essentially cold character and the fact that he pits it against dark forces to protect Britain, he said.

Only Casino Royale successfully hinted at an agent with a hinterland when it shows Bond fall down in the shower, "shocked and appalled by what he had done. It suggested he had a softer, human side," Faulks said.

Fleming's Bond conveyed a character "so alone and in constant jeopardy", under-equipped in soft shoes and nothing but a "ladies' gun" to defend himself.

Mr Faulks' fellow panelist, Ian Fleming's biographer Andrew Lycett, disagreed with his criticism of Skyfall. "It gathered together all the ingredients of a Bond novel and I wasn't bored, I quite enjoyed it," he said.


http://www.telegraph...lm-Skyfall.html

There is so much wrong with Faulks' assessment of Bond as a character I hardly know where to begin. Turn thankfully already pointed out Bond reads far more than Faulks gave him credit for. I'm really quite amazed how a writer who's been tasked to hand in an official continuation - and for Ian Fleming's centenary, no less! - can show such a lack of actual research and overall understanding of Bond. Granted, he isn't shown as having read the entire classic canon of world literature. But when reading Fleming (and - surprisingly perhaps - most other continuation authors) I never get the feeling if you asked him about Sartre, Voltaire, Sun Tsu, Jean Paul, Rousseau et cetera you'd get 'What? Who did you say?' in combination with a stupid look as an answer. In contrast to many modern day characters that people our literature. Bond is no man of letters in the classical sense, but his education evidently was similar with that of Fleming, or not very far behind at least.

Likewise I cannot fathom how somebody who's read the originals can come up with the - really rather silly - notion Bond had no inner life. To the contrary, the books are full of his thoughts. Full to the point of threatening to stall the flimsy plots. If you look closely the actual storyline is often only an excuse for giving Bond's (and sometimes M's) views on next to everything, from German rearmament to colonial politics to American crime syndicates, suits by Brooks Brothers and French alcoholism. Bond is indeed quite a small-scale philosopher when pondering the merits of stewardesses as wives and matters of life and death over a drink. It's so much part of the character that it became a staple of fanfic, almost a ritual and a convention of the sub-genre. Of course Bond's thoughts revolve around matters entirely different from what Faulks would call his mental and intellectual home turf, or so I assume. But denying Bond any kind of spiritual equipment and exercise seems not only overly harsh but downright ignorant and in any case displays a major misinterpretation of Bond and Fleming in the bargain.


Coming back to this later.


Edited by Dustin, 26 January 2013 - 11:27 AM.


#814 Dustin

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 01:12 PM

To continue this morning's Faulks-bashing...

 


"I
found the last film pretty distasteful. One [of the Bond girls]
couldn't act and the other had been previously exploited as a sex
worker. And Bond walks into the shower and makes love to her. Casino
Royale was much better," he told an audience at India's Jaipur
Literature Festival.

He disliked the aggressive promotion and
merchandising for the film and said critics had shown a "fantastic
degree of collusion" with the film's publicists to avoid spoiling its
main shock - the death of M, played by Dame Judi Dench.

 

http://www.telegraph...lm-Skyfall.html

 

The question - to me at least - would rather be, can somebody who presented his own effort in the continuation business with much fanfare aboard a zodiac in the company of a photo model and a platoon of extras in full camo-fetish gear really claim any scrap of expertise when it comes to distastefulness and aggressive promotion? And the answer, unfortunately, must be: yes, such a person must be considered a pundit.

 

Another example of the highly dangerous nature blunt objects represent for the residents of glasshouses...

 

That said I fail to understand how one arrives at the opinion Severine's past - always provided she really was a sex slave, it's not confirmed and we do not learn more about her life before she came to Silva; it's even possible the tattoo is a decoy - would prevent her entirely from enjoying sexual pleasure? Why should Bond not want to make love to her and why should the two of them not enjoy the time? Over my head really.

 

 

 

 

 

Can't
agree.  Part of the buildup was, of course, done by the marketing
department, but even after throwing all of that out the window,
Severine's mere presence in the film is a means to try to display Silva
as this despicable individual.  We get enough buildup to that with his
destroying of MI6, the outing of all of the NATO agents, his direct
threats towards M, and all of that before we even get to Severine. 
That's just one more thing to throw on top of the already despicable
characterization of Silva (although he's still not the most despicable
character in the film), by almost saying to the audience, "in case you
didn't think he was really evil, look what he's done to this person as
well".  It would have come off much better had they actually treated
Severine like a real person instead of just throwing her away to show
how big a bastard both Bond and Silva could be. 

 

 

But the difference with Silva shooting Severine is, this murder we see him do himself, crucial for our judgement of his character. It's one of the main motifs of SKYFALL, the damage you can cause with a simple mouseklick (Q, Silva) in contrast to the damage you have to unleash yourself (Bond, again Silva) and the deeds you commit by proxy (M, Silva, Q) compared to the people who pull the trigger for you (Bond, Moneypenny, Silva). Silva shooting Severine is the first evil thing we see him do with our own eyes. Were it not for this scene I think I'd root for Silva the whole film to the end. Everything else, captured agents, bomb attacks, abandoned island and whatnot, all that's really done or set up by a faceless adversary. When Silva finally turns up it's still possible he isn't the driving force behind these acts, or not the only force. Only when we see him casually killing the girl it's a done deal he's the obvious antagonist.    

 

 

 

 

The whole
Severine character simply feels like lip service to an issue that they
should have touched on in CASINO ROYALE.  You're right, it's a chilling
scene, but for the wrong reason.  All Severine's death serves to
accomplish is to show that there really isn't a character worth
"rooting" for in SKYFALL.  M monumentally blows her chances at becoming
the object of sympathy in the film, and Silva loses by default
(obviously), and then we're left with Bond who shows himself to be
almost as despicable as Silva in the way that he uses Severine.  I'd say
that it's really more disgusting than chilling, and while it is
something that harkens back to the novels in some way, it should have
been offset with something that shows Bond's feelings towards killing in
cold blood.  Yes, he didn't pull the trigger, but he's just as much
responsible for Severine's death as Silva is.

 

 

 


I see
Severine more as them harkening back to the damsels in distress type
characters that we see from time to time in the series.  They present
Severine, at least in appearance, as a femme fatale, but she really
isn't one.  They've already done the post-Vesper Bond girl to show
Bond's new MO with women when they had Fields in QUANTUM OF SOLACE, so
there really wasn't a need to further emphasize the point that Bond, in
his post-Vesper world, simply uses women for whatever and then they're
on their own.

 

 

I don't think it's fair to call Bond merely using Severine. She is a means to come one step closer to his target, yes. But Bond couldn't foresee she'd be killed right after she served her purpose. It's Silva's game, not his. And Severine is obviously a vital part of Silva's outfit, crucial in his dealings in Macau and Shanghai. There is no reason for Bond to suspect she is in any more danger than he himself. Silva shooting her is entirely irrational and akin to Goldfinger shooting Pussy Galore. 

 

Fact is, Severine had no more place in the storyline. Her part was done and there was no reason to keep her. I'm actually much more happy with the plot as is than I would be if she'd be kept for convention's sake and would clutter up the whole London-Scotland finale (and complicate everything with her feelings, as Fleming would say...). At the core of it Severine is the dance 'performer' (read: dancing prostitute) from the novel TMWTGG. While that girl survived - though with a decent scare - she too had no more impact on the story. I definitely prefer Severine over that character and wouldn't have thought such a twist was possible in a contemporary Bond film script. 

 

Also I can't say I agree with the notion no character in SKYFALL was worth rooting for. To the contrary, I find every one of them worth our attention and consideration. They are fallible, credible humans - though the warts-per-visible-square-inch ratio is manipulated a bit in favour of the younger cast. M (for me the real villain) made her career on the back of Silva and betrayed him. But you see her conscience isn't exactly a peaceful one. She expected her deeds to haunt her, and when they finally do she isn't surprised. When Silva gatecrashes the hearing M actually capitulates, it's Bond who saves her while she might have been more happy if the thing was just over there and then. By that time she knows what she's done and accepts the repercussions. 

 

Silva we've talked about before. He's a former star agent, resourceful and dedicated like Bond, though on a different field of expertise. He pays the ultimate price and discovers not only there's life-after-life, but also life-after-love, which is what makes him so dangerous. Bond in a similar situation? What would he do?

 

Bond finally is disillusioned. At the start of the plot, not the end. He makes a concious decision to come back, to return to his duty in spite of the fact his authority figure has shown weakness. Over the story of SKYFALL Bond sees his superior with all her flaws and mistakes she made, yet he doesn't let her down. He's grown into a more mature and responsible agent, far beyond cheap jingoism as represented by the dog. I find this a surprisingly sophisticated and satisfying plot for a work of light entertainment. 



#815 tdalton

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 04:35 PM

I don't think it's fair to call Bond merely using Severine. She is a means to come one step closer to his target, yes. But Bond couldn't foresee she'd be killed right after she served her purpose. It's Silva's game, not his. And Severine is obviously a vital part of Silva's outfit, crucial in his dealings in Macau and Shanghai. There is no reason for Bond to suspect she is in any more danger than he himself. Silva shooting her is entirely irrational and akin to Goldfinger shooting Pussy Galore.

Bond has to know that when he pushes Severine to bring him to Silva that he's leading her to her death, especially when he does it in the manner that he does. He comes aboard Silva's boat (clearly this is not Severine's boat), sleeps with Severine, and then shows himself not to be a prisoner of Severine's by proudly standing out on the deck of the boat as they arrive at Silva's island as opposed to being bound below deck like a prisoner would be. Since he doesn't know that Silva's plan is to be caught, the only rational explanation he can think Silva would find for him being there is that Severine has betrayed him, which will clearly result in her death by Silva's hand.
 

Fact is, Severine had no more place in the storyline. Her part was done and there was no reason to keep her. I'm actually much more happy with the plot as is than I would be if she'd be kept for convention's sake and would clutter up the whole London-Scotland finale (and complicate everything with her feelings, as Fleming would say...). At the core of it Severine is the dance 'performer' (read: dancing prostitute) from the novel TMWTGG. While that girl survived - though with a decent scare - she too had no more impact on the story. I definitely prefer Severine over that character and wouldn't have thought such a twist was possible in a contemporary Bond film script.

I've never said that Severine should have continued beyond that point. I'd argue the opposite point of view. She's so pointless to the story that I'd call for, as much as I like Marlohe in the role, a slight script revision that saw Severine removed entirely from the story.

#816 Dustin

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 05:29 PM



I don't think it's fair to call Bond merely using Severine. She is a means to come one step closer to his target, yes. But Bond couldn't foresee she'd be killed right after she served her purpose. It's Silva's game, not his. And Severine is obviously a vital part of Silva's outfit, crucial in his dealings in Macau and Shanghai. There is no reason for Bond to suspect she is in any more danger than he himself. Silva shooting her is entirely irrational and akin to Goldfinger shooting Pussy Galore.

Bond has to know that when he pushes Severine to bring him to Silva that he's leading her to her death, especially when he does it in the manner that he does. He comes aboard Silva's boat (clearly this is not Severine's boat), sleeps with Severine, and then shows himself not to be a prisoner of Severine's by proudly standing out on the deck of the boat as they arrive at Silva's island as opposed to being bound below deck like a prisoner would be. Since he doesn't know that Silva's plan is to be caught, the only rational explanation he can think Silva would find for him being there is that Severine has betrayed him, which will clearly result in her death by Silva's hand.
No, I really find that argued too narrow-minded and intent on the outcome. There can be any number of reasons as to why the Shanghai contact brings in Bond the way she did, primarily because it saves all involved a lot of trouble. I'm not even sure it wasn't intended to happen in this way from the start, seem to remember she said something like 'sorry' when they were separated, so it's entirely possible Severine knew from the start what would happen to Bond. That would have been only logical and Bond counted on it. Severine getting a bullet for her pains was not in the cards; not for me at least. Especially as taking Bond prisoner would have been a task for the goons squad, not for Severine.







Fact is, Severine had no more place in the storyline. Her part was done and there was no reason to keep her. I'm actually much more happy with the plot as is than I would be if she'd be kept for convention's sake and would clutter up the whole London-Scotland finale (and complicate everything with her feelings, as Fleming would say...). At the core of it Severine is the dance 'performer' (read: dancing prostitute) from the novel TMWTGG. While that girl survived - though with a decent scare - she too had no more impact on the story. I definitely prefer Severine over that character and wouldn't have thought such a twist was possible in a contemporary Bond film script.

I've never said that Severine should have continued beyond that point. I'd argue the opposite point of view. She's so pointless to the story that I'd call for, as much as I like Marlohe in the role, a slight script revision that saw Severine removed entirely from the story.
Once more I stand by my opinion she serves a crucial purpose for the character relations, the way we regard Silva and the entire dynamics of the figure constellation. Without her the effects of Silva's operation would hover over the plot without connection to the villain, at least until Silva shows up at M's hearing. The figure of Silva would lose a good deal of dramatic potential and depth. His shooting of Severine - in a casual 'game' - displays the whole scale of what this man has become. It reverberates back even later when we learn about Silva's fate and what he went through. Hearing from M herself this man used to be a valuable agent, not a simple psychopath reveals more about the drama of these protagonists. To me SKYFALL would be a lot poorer minus Severine and her unexpected end.

Edited by Dustin, 26 January 2013 - 05:30 PM.


#817 tdalton

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 05:46 PM

Once more I stand by my opinion she serves a crucial purpose for the character relations, the way we regard Silva and the entire dynamics of the figure constellation. Without her the effects of Silva's operation would hover over the plot without connection to the villain, at least until Silva shows up at M's hearing. The figure of Silva would lose a good deal of dramatic potential and depth. His shooting of Severine - in a casual 'game' - displays the whole scale of what this man has become. It reverberates back even later when we learn about Silva's fate and what he went through. Hearing from M herself this man used to be a valuable agent, not a simple psychopath reveals more about the drama of these protagonists. To me SKYFALL would be a lot poorer minus Severine and her unexpected end.

 

This all leads to one of the major flaws of SKYFALL, which is that they don't follow the old adage of show, not tell.  We're told a lot of things about Silva, but when it comes to what is actually shown in relationship to the character, there's not much.  As you said, his entire plot hovers over the film without any connection to him as a character, but we're never actually shown him doing something that would display the reputation that he has for being this brilliant agent and whatnot.  From the time he actually appears on screen, Silva's plan is entirely dependent on convenience and coincidence, things that have supposedly been planned so far in advance yet are impossible to have been planned that way. 

 

I stand by the assertion that Severine's inclusion is simply as a means to shock the audience and to show how big of a bastard both Bond and Silva can be.  The killing of Severine is really just a cosmetic plot device meant to show just how bad this man is, moreso because they fail to do it in many other turns in the film.  It's almost comedic in how Silva is able to basically be a fortune teller and know exactly where and when things that cannot possibly be known ahead of time, so the filmmakers have to concoct a scene that shows him actually being a villain, since they don't actually show him as being the one behind all of the nonsense that leads up to his reveal. 



#818 Professor Pi

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 05:59 PM

This is quite an interesting discussion.  It's not obvious on first viewing of Skyfall how these three characters--Bond, Sererine, Silva--all use each other to get what they want.  Silva is using Severine to lure Bond into his lair so he can both meet Bond and be captured to confront M.  Bond in turn is clearly using Severine to get to Silva.  She's also the only lead he has at this point, Patrice having fallen to his death without saying who he works for, and Bond using his casino chip to see where that takes him.  But Severine is also using Bond in the hopes that he'll kill Silva, who she is clearly afraid of and trapped by.  She views Bond as her way out.  And I think she's realistic about her chances.

 

She leaves him at the casino telling Bond, "When I leave, they are going to kill you," though she hopes Bond will survive.  If Bond dies, Silva's none the wiser about Severine's scheme.  (Though he's gotta figure she wants him dead anyway, and that Bond won't resist her charms.  Either way, Silva gets what he wants--Bond.)  On the Chimera, she seems disappointed when the boat leaves and she hasn't seen Bond yet.  There is no need for Silva's goons to capture Bond at this point, and killing him destroys Silva's plan.  So they leave them be.  The morning after, as Severine stands on the deck facing the island, she's gotta know either she'll be freed or be led to her death by this gambit.  Once on the island, the last thing she says to Bond is, "I'm sorry."  She knows her chances aren't good, and probably figures the same for Bond (I doubt she's filled in on Silva's larger plan which entails keeping Bond alive.)

 

Bond knows the cavalry is coming at some point so he's not nervous about being tied to the chair.  Now having Bond, Silva has no more need for Severine ("there's nothing superfluous in my life.")  She's served his purpose and is now dispensable to him.  Silva is amusing himself by psychologically torturing Bond (he probably knows about Le Chiffre's torture from hacking into MI6's files) with the William Tell reenactment.  Bond delays as much as he can even though there's a gun to his head, and misses his shot, probably wondering where the hell the British helicopters are.  When Silva kills her, it's in such cold blood to reinforce that he is the bad guy.

 

Bond says probably the most insensitive thing at this point, "waste of good Scotch" but I think it serves to show how callous he's become toward women.  He'll never let himself be as vulnerable as he was with Vesper, and he's come to view a woman as a "provocatrix."  But he did what he could to keep Severine alive as long as possible.

 

We can understand Silva's reasons to get back at M when she gave him up.  But he was "hacking the Chinese" and not doing his job.  Bond stays alive throughout because he always chooses to be loyal to the mission (also compare this to Trevelyan.)  Both Silva and Trevelyan embark on paths to their doom by initially betraying MI6.  Even when M confides in retrospect "I've fucked this up, haven't I?", Bond says, "No, you were doing your job."  And that's where his respect for her is and why he ultimately decides to stick with his profession.  No more "enjoying death" on Turkish beaches or "aimless wanderings" with millions of dollars in Venice or comments like "hire me or fire me, it's entirely up to you."   

 

"Ready to get to work?" Mallory asks him at the end.  "With pleasure, M. With pleasure."  Cue gunbarrel.



#819 Dustin

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 06:28 PM


From the time he actually appears on screen, Silva's plan is entirely dependent on convenience and coincidence, things that have supposedly been planned so far in advance yet are impossible to have been planned that way.


It's almost comedic in how Silva is able to basically be a fortune teller and know exactly where and when things that cannot possibly be known ahead of time, so the filmmakers have to concoct a scene that shows him actually being a villain, since they don't actually show him as being the one behind all of the nonsense that leads up to his reveal.


I think if the script has a major flaw it's perhaps that it's open to this kind of (mis-?)interpretation. Silva's actual plot calls not for so much fortune teller magic. He's hacked himself into the SIS systems and that's all he really needs: stealing the data and decrypting it was bound to lead to an agent from London HQ showing up on his doorstep sooner or later. Silva was aware of Bond's mission because he still had access to the SIS database, but it's irrelevant if M had sent Bond or Miller or Barraclough or Guibert. The system blackout could have been initiated from Silva's men outside, likewise the raid on the hearing. The only thing that really is beyond belief for me is the tube being intended especially for Bond at that very moment. But having a means to prevent SIS personnel from further chasing him would be again within the expected and logical responses for this kind of operation.

#820 The Shark

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 06:44 PM

This is quite an interesting discussion.  It's not obvious on first viewing of Skyfall how these three characters--Bond, Sererine, Silva--all use each other to get what they want.  Silva is using Severine to lure Bond into his lair so he can both meet Bond and be captured to confront M.  Bond in turn is clearly using Severine to get to Silva.  She's also the only lead he has at this point, Patrice having fallen to his death without saying who he works for, and Bond using his casino chip to see where that takes him.  But Severine is also using Bond in the hopes that he'll kill Silva, who she is clearly afraid of and trapped by.  She views Bond as her way out.  And I think she's realistic about her chances.

 

Well said. Bond's "someone usually dies" quip is also a disclaimer. Severine knew what she was getting into.



#821 graric

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 11:00 AM

Just saw this article with Sebastian Faulks where he gives a less the glowing assessment of Skyfall. Apart from some complaints that have come up here before (Naomi Harris acting, Bond having sex with Severine in the shower) his big criticism seems to be that the films attempts to show a deeper emotional side to Bond are not in keeping with what he sees as Bond's character (which to me suggests that he clearly doesn't get Bond's character and might explain some of the failings of his novel.)

 

http://www.dailymail...#axzz2JqcoxS6m


Edited by graric, 04 February 2013 - 12:24 PM.


#822 Vauxhall

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 11:29 AM

Sounds pretty bitter, doesn't he? How odd.

#823 thecasinoroyale

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 11:49 AM

Ouch! Maybe he's a little bitter about his work being panned by 'Skyfall' being raved about, and the way his character of Bond probably didn't work but this modern run did.

 

I can't identify why there's a lot of attack in there, even to old Albert Finney!

 

Oh well...sour grapes?



#824 Shaun Forever

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 12:31 PM

Ah well, we all love it, the majority of the public love it, so let him sulk.



#825 QOS4EVER

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 01:26 PM

Ah well, we all love it, the majority of the public love it, so let him sulk.

Critics enjoyed it, cbn adores it, I wouldn't be too sure about the younger generations



#826 Dustin

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 02:03 PM

A rehash of the Telegraph story from a few days ago: http://debrief.comma...28#entry1248665


Edited by Dustin, 04 February 2013 - 02:04 PM.


#827 Dustin

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 02:18 PM

On second thought not worth its own thread. Topics merged.


Edited by Dustin, 04 February 2013 - 02:19 PM.


#828 Yellow Pinky

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 03:17 PM

Just chiming in to endorse the well thought through debate going on here.  Kudos to all involved for intelligently making your case, whether I concur or not.  Nice to see civil disagreement as intellectually stimulating discourse.



#829 iexpectu2die

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 03:40 PM

The only thing that really is beyond belief for me is the tube being intended especially for Bond at that very moment. But having a means to prevent SIS personnel from further chasing him would be again within the expected and logical responses for this kind of operation.

 

This bothered me a lot until recently. I think the problem is that the 'I do hope that wasn't for me / No... but that is' exchange between Bond and Silva implies heavily that the Tube crash is intended for Bond. In the original script, Bond said something like 'I have bad news for you, SIlva' to which Silva replied 'Me too.' As far as I can see, the Tube crash was intended to draw the police away from the Enquiry. 



#830 Dustin

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 04:34 PM

The only thing that really is beyond belief for me is the tube being intended especially for Bond at that very moment. But having a means to prevent SIS personnel from further chasing him would be again within the expected and logical responses for this kind of operation.

 

This bothered me a lot until recently. I think the problem is that the 'I do hope that wasn't for me / No... but that is' exchange between Bond and Silva implies heavily that the Tube crash is intended for Bond. In the original script, Bond said something like 'I have bad news for you, SIlva' to which Silva replied 'Me too.' As far as I can see, the Tube crash was intended to draw the police away from the Enquiry. 

 

Ah, yes. That's a whole lot more like what I would call within the realm of believability.



#831 Professor Pi

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 03:32 AM


What would be more unbelievable is, if after setting up a scene in a tube station, a Bond movie didn't blow up the train! :D



#832 The Dove

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 01:18 AM

http://www.digitalsp...ng-skyfall.html

 

Well this is clearly one reaction to Skyfall that's perhaps better kept in private...literally!! Seriously, this guy couldn't wait til the DVD/Blu-Ray came out and he could have had his own copy at home?? :D



#833 QLink

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 04:54 AM

Serverine is basically trying to make the same deal that Andrea made in TMWTGG. It's not romance, it's commerce. She wants Silva dead and Bond (after he gets the list back) wants that too. No one is using anyone in that situation.

#834 SecretAgentFan

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 02:03 PM

 

The only thing that really is beyond belief for me is the tube being intended especially for Bond at that very moment. But having a means to prevent SIS personnel from further chasing him would be again within the expected and logical responses for this kind of operation.

 

This bothered me a lot until recently. I think the problem is that the 'I do hope that wasn't for me / No... but that is' exchange between Bond and Silva implies heavily that the Tube crash is intended for Bond. In the original script, Bond said something like 'I have bad news for you, SIlva' to which Silva replied 'Me too.' As far as I can see, the Tube crash was intended to draw the police away from the Enquiry. 

 

Ah, yes. That's a whole lot more like what I would call within the realm of believability.

 

Strangely, I never thought Silva planned to hit Bond with the train. He just knew that he had another bomb left for derailing a train. When he says "No... but that is." it always appeared to be a kind of improvised reply, showing how quickly Silva adjusts to any situation - just like Bond is.



#835 Vauxhall

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 05:47 PM

http://www.digitalsp...ng-skyfall.html
 
Well this is clearly one reaction to Skyfall that's perhaps better kept in private...literally!! Seriously, this guy couldn't wait til the DVD/Blu-Ray came out and he could have had his own copy at home?? :D

I wonder which scene he picked.

#836 Golddragon71

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 03:43 PM

That's ok. Iwas working  in a theater when Goldeneye was out. When I went to watch it on my free movie for the week i sat in the back row and the couple in front of me were having sex during the archives escape!

 

Now back to the Faulks reaction, this part keeps jumping out at me 

 

"One [of the Bond girls] couldn't act and the other had been previously exploited as a sex worker."

 

He really should have worded it differently because, to me, this reads: "Naomi Harris can't act and Bérénice Marlohe was a former prostitute/sex-slave" 

He doesn't seem to acknowledge the difference between the performer in one case and the character in the next.



#837 SecretAgentFan

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 05:08 PM

Both could act very well. Pretty meaningless attack by Faulks.

#838 Dustin

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 05:23 PM

Influenced by his disappointment about his name not featuring in SKYFALL's titles, no doubt...



#839 glidrose

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 06:18 PM

Leonard Maltin's annual film guide paperback gives SF ****. First time he's ever given a Bond film four stars. He especially admires Bardem's performance and the title song. Elsewhere in his guide he also rates SF as the #1 film overlooked by the Academy Awards when nominating films for best picture, etc., this year.



#840 Hansen

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Posted 10 September 2013 - 03:04 PM

Leonard Maltin's annual film guide paperback gives SF ****. First time he's ever given a Bond film four stars. He especially admires Bardem's performance and the title song. Elsewhere in his guide he also rates SF as the #1 film overlooked by the Academy Awards when nominating films for best picture, etc., this year.

Well.. Nobody's perfect...