Saturday, November 7, 2009

Quantum of Solace. B-

'Quantum of Solace' is more about James Bond getting revenge than James Bond having a rollicking good time. If you watch most Bond movies, he's almost always having fun, despite the fact that he is constantly being pursued by relentless assassins. Here he's all about business, as he seeks to avenge the death of his true love (see 'Casino Royale' for more on that). 'Quantum' opens with a high-octane car chase, followed by a double crossing that takes Bond around the world. He meets Russian agent Camille Montes (the new Bond girl and a bit of a disappointment) and then finds information on an evil plot run by a man named Dominic Greene that has to do with concealing a large amount of water. 'Quantum of Solace' is neither character driven nor plot driven. Rather it's fueled by action sequence after action sequence. There's just about every possible chase you could ask for, as well as fist fights, gun battles, and large explosions (though the latter is mainly reserved till the end). In that sense, the film succeeds. But I found it to be as a whole somewhat unsatisfying. Daniel Craig, returning as Bond once again, is too good an actor to be as limited as he is in this. This is a good time for the Bond series to focus more on the story seeing as it's found someone like Craig that can make that new route work. Instead it casts away any real drama and storytelling and goes for a more mindless approach. Craig is simply too intelligent for that. Since this continues right where 'Casino Royale' left off, I'm hoping that it's sort of just a set up for the next Bond adventure, which should arriving soon. In the meantime, 'Quantum of Solace' will likely fade into the lesser half of the Bond franchise. There's no reason for this to become a coveted movie in the series. It's a fun ride, and sure to please audiences in the moment. But when it's over, it will be quickly forgotten.

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