I’ve seen all the Bond films at one time or another and I’ve wondered if anyone would ever be cool as Sean Connery.
I know many hardliners will not agree, but I think Daniel Craig may be the coolest Bond of all. In some ways, you’re comparing apples with oranges in dealing with Craig and Connery, but I think Craig and the “new” Bond may have the upper hand.
We have to keep in mind that Ian Fleming’s Bond books are written slightly tongue-in-cheek. These days the Cold War is over and all the Fleming books are committed to film posterity. Maybe this gives the new Bond franchise a little leniency in dealing with the subject matter.
The new Bond films are not nearly as reliant on little techno devices for easy escapes from various scrapes. The opening fight scene in “Skyfall” is mano a mano warfare. The new lean, mean Bond machine has elements reminiscent of westerns.
Craig’s Bond has a more human element than the old days. When Bond tells “M” (the always marvelous Judy Dench) that he’s, “Enjoying being dead,” Sean Connery is the last thing that comes to mind.
As always, the Bond nemesis is refreshingly original. Javier Bardem, (“No Country for Old Men’s” Chigur) is spot-on in the best Bond tradition.
Bardem plays a rogue ex-MI6 agent bent on destroying his old institution and “M” in particular. At one horrifying point in the film, Bardem shows us the only thing worse than dying after biting a cyanide pill is living after biting a cyanide pill.
I don’t want to give away anything more about the plot, but it does address contemporary issues of terrorism and betrayal.
Craig is fantastic; the man looks equally at home romancing stunning women, fist fighting on top of a moving train, or crawling through a sewer. The old Bonds were somewhat limited with displays of emotion, but Craig can emote without losing Bond’s masculinity, and that’s a fine line to tread.
Every Bond movie requires a certain amount of suspension of disbelief, but this movie keeps it down to an acceptable level.
I’m not knocking the old Bond films or actors, I grew up with them. However, anything that’s going to stay relevant needs to evolve with the times.
Thanks to Daniel Craig and the current directors and producers, I’m sure Bond will endure well into the future.