Bond: Die Another Day

I had fun at the movies tonight. It’s a Bond film. Don’t overanalyze it. Enjoy it for the formula, marvel at the stunts, and curl up the corners of your mouth at some of the bad puns and innuendo. There are some great easter eggs in here for longtime fans, too.

The Bond franchise has changed. Bond doesn’t win everything. (See the wretched credits sequence at the beginning if you can get through the horrible Madonna ‘song.’) Halle Berry’s character is the most active Bond Girl ever, and I didn’t have a problem with it. It didn’t seem forced at all. Between her Jinx and the most stunning MI6 agent, Miranda Frost, you don’t get any tongue-in-cheek character names this time around. One has to wonder if Austin Powers hasn’t taken the sting out of them at all.

Jinx’s fight at the end of the film was excellent, but Bond’s earlier in the film with the swordplay was the highlight for me. I love a good swordfight. It’s a shame we don’t get more of them in films these days.

The special effects take a nosedive to roughly the level of a Gidget The Flying Nun made-for-television movie when Bond goes surfing near the end. It was almot embarrassing to watch. They did such a great job with the car chase on idea, and the hovercraft opening, but that bit was atrocious. I also have one or two physics questions (particularly with the helicopter at the end) that I’m trying real hard not to think about.

Some of the humor felt a little silly. I had brief flashbacks to a Schumacher-directed Batman film when the set piece moves into the icehouse, complete with a couple of obvious puns.

I liked it better than the last Bond film, but not as much as TOMORROW NEVER DIES, which for some reason is still my favorite Brosnan-era Bond.


 
 
 

3 Responses to “Bond: Die Another Day”

  1. Shards
    1. December 2002 at 17:30

    I was wondering how they did the surfing scenes… I live about ten minutes from where they surfed them (Maui, North Shore, at a spot called Jaws), but I haven’t seen the movie yet. Too bad they didn’t do the surfing well.

  2. Augie De Blieck Jr.
    1. December 2002 at 22:10

    The surfing in the beginning of the movie is just fine. Looks like they got professionals to do it and probably just edited together a bunch of good bits and digitally colored it to look like night. That’s fine.

    It’s when Bond goes parasailing/surfing that the blue screen tech becomes obvious. They’ve been using blue screens (and green screens) in movies for decades now, and they still haven’t found a way to make them work all that well without using an all-digital environment… Too bad.

    -Augie

  3. gren99
    3. December 2002 at 23:15

    i could stomach the para-surfing (it’s a bond movie — c’mon…), but the helicopter thing just was something i could not figure out. i thought it was profoundly dumb and well outside the realm of being sensible…..until, that is, i saw the trailer for the ‘charlie’s angels’ sequel (called ‘full throttle’, it’s newly available over at quicktime.com), which features a helicopter stunt ithat makes the bond ‘copter thing look like tiddlywinks.

    i shall harp on it no more…:)