The twenty-third James Bond film was a delight for me. That’s the first thing that I would like to say. It was one of those films that I knew I would love before even watching. The film is actually a mixture of a wonderful cast and crew, where you can get the chance to see Daniel Craig, Ralph Fiennes, Oscar winners Judi Dench and Javier Bardem, in addition to other talents together on screen in a very attractive action film. Also, I was eager to see what director Sam Mendes was going to do with this smart screenplay written by Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, and John Logan. And obviously, he did a great job, something expected from an extremely talented director like himself.
The film follows the story of a classic “cat and mouse” journey between Bond (Craig) and Silva (Bardem) who in turn is having a “cat and mouse” game of his own with M (Dench). And as for M, that’s not the only monster after her, but she has also to face this governmental inquiry questioning her recent results in the office in the last few months and years.
You see, it is not a brilliant story, but what is brilliant is what the director and writers wanted to do with this film. They were clearly trying to introduce two main themes in this film. The first theme was bringing the character of 007 more towards the human side and nature, instead of the super powers and nature which we used to see in previous Bond films and stories. Nevertheless, we witnessed some great Bond style action in several scenes which were greatly shot and they paid more than fair tribute to the classic Bond image. The second theme, however, was something that left me happy. It was the idea (and you would hear it in the movie several times) that some things are better done the old way. Yes, this theme was very present in the film, and Sam Mendes, being a great theatre sensation director before being a cinema director used this symbol a lot in his scenes. One example is when we first see Silva, the charismatic villain. Mendes paid tribute to a wonderful “old” technique from “Citizen Kane” from 1941. In tonight’s film, he made Silva dress in white during his first presence in the film, while all others present in the scene (including 007) were dressed in black. The aim of this old cinema trick was to highlight the attention on the person dressed in clothes different from the others, and yes it worked. It was a classical old black and white or dark and bright contrast technique. Sam Mendes introduced his theatrical themes all through the film. What an artistic director we have in him!
I enjoyed the colorful cinematography which was exhibited very well in the film, starting from the beginning (including the great Adele song and opening titles) and reaching towards the end, which in my opinion could have ended in a more intense way, especially in the one on one confrontation between Bond and Silva. But in conclusion, it was a very good film which deserves a very good verdict in my opinion.