-By Gus Hunninghake-
Many avid James Bond fans will enter the theatre to see Skyfall with Quantum of Solace still embedded as their last memories of Daniel Craig playing the titular character. Many, if not all of the loyal fans, will ask themselves if James Bond is back, or if another confusing, sloppily plotted, few worded movie like Quantum of Solacewill be projected onto that silver screen. Let all these questions be put to rest. This is without a doubt, one of the best James Bond movies ever created.
Now, this conclusion can be credited to many different facets of the movie. Some might say it was the more amped up, still sexy, line fed, even humorous script written for the characters that beefed up the franchise. Another might say that it was the change in emotions from Daniel Craig’s role as James Bond. These changes in emotion mean you see a more humor filled, albeit at the same time depressed Bond, who is fighting unknown emotions. Maybe the new face of Q, Bond’s gadget whiz, who is a classic character from Bond movies before this, and had been almost forgotten in the two previous films, brought a little pizazz back. All of these ideas are very true. However, there is one ultimate aspect of this movie that really brings the greatness back to James Bond. That aspect is the cold-hearted, bone chilling super villain Raoul Silva, played by Academy Award winning Javier Bardem.
Bardem’s portrayal of this villain from M’s (Bond’s boss) past is something that has not been seen for quite a while in the James Bond universe. This character depicts a heartless, colorless, faceless villain, whose sole purpose is not world domination or destruction, (which is very common for a James Bond villain) but rather to destroy M, who he believes is responsible for his pain and suffering. As the movie progresses, you realize how cynical Bardem’s character is. Silva, played by Bardem, for obvious reasons, is a character deserving of Oscars. He is also arguably one of the best villains in James Bond history. This is a pretty good title to give considering this franchise has been going for fifty years and has had twenty-two other movies with twenty-two other villains to take the spot for best villain.
Besides all the impressive characters, Skyfall provides many stunning visual effects (as it should, considering its whopping two hundred million dollar production budget). Skyfall also delivers sweet new gadgets, amazing chase scenes, and as always, Bond has a sweet car, an Aston Martin DB5 to be exact. This is the same car driven by Sean Connery in the first James Bond movie from 1962, Dr. No. To top it off, Skyfall holds a “Certified Fresh” 92% approval rating from a review aggregator website called Rotten Tomatoes. That makes this the fifth best reviewed movie ever for a James Bond film. Every fan that entered the theatre with questions will leave with a very clear answer. “Bond, James Bond” is back, and he is better than ever.