Love’s Labour’s Lost: Review for “Quantum of Solace”

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It’s kind of strange, but global warming is affecting everything. Even TV shows and movies. One day you have David Schwimmer freaking Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) out on 30 Rock and the next day you have James Bond chasing down a villain who runs a conservation company called Greene Planet. But global warming is not the only thing about this latest 007 flick. After his great love, Vesper Lynd (the sexy Eva Green, The Dreamers), betrayed him (?), he’s left a cold, hard man who, although he denies it to his boss, M (the great Judi Dench), is bent on revenge. He’s joined by a strong female of sorts, Camille (Olga Kurylenko, Hitman), who is after an evil general who killed her family. In a way, Craig not only lets James Bond bleed and not put a Band-Aid on the wound, he’s become a much meaner 007. I’m hoping that he’s a little softer in the next film. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly‘s Mathieu Amalric plays a bad guy who is part of an organization called QUANTUM, the same guys who killed Ms. Lynd. This film tries a little too hard, probably because of all the expectations they have come to receive for the first direct sequel in the James Bond series. The beginning action sequence showcases this need for attention; it feels as if it’s trying to create the exact same tension as the Construction scene in Casino Royale. Which is doesn’t; nothing can top that scene; it remains one of the most heart pounding and exciting action sequences of the 21st century. And then the action just kind of piles onto each other, with two more fight scenes that don’t really get that adrenaline flowing. David Arnold comes back for his fifth James Bond film and he “scores”! His use of music makes each scene more intensified, and his use of the “City of Lovers” track from Casino Royale is particularly devastating in some scenes. Jeffery Wright (W.) plays Felix Leiter, a cool agent. I must admit, last time, I was iffy about him playing the role, but seeing CR maybe a second time makes me happy he’s playing Bond’s cool ally. MK12, the company who made the main title designs for Stranger Than Fiction, makes an unlasting impression upon this film. I was expecting, after knowing that the girls were going to be back in the titles, it would be back to sultry, sexy titles. Instead, we’re given James Bond brooding with a gun in the desert. Marc Forster, director of the aforementioned Stranger and Finding Neverland, directs his first 007 movie. It’s not exactly a bad choice. He’s a great director; he did an amazing job on The Kite Runner. I don’t think however, he made a great Bond film. Craig was great, unsurprisingly, but the storyline felt to quickly churned out. Fun, but certainly not as much fun as Casino Royale.    

Grade: B-

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