Skyfall

Skyfall ★★★★★

Film #23 of the FOR QUEEN AND COUNTRY: A BOND-A-THON Challenge.

Completed Missions:
List and Let Die: James Bond Ranked
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Mommy was very bad.

M (Judi Dench) thought all her problems died with Elektra King, unfortunately, her past is coming back to haunt her one last time.

Apparently, while James Bond was taking a hiatus in the late 80s to early 90s, M, then section chief of the Hong Kong branch of MI6, sold agent/hacker Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem) out to the Chinese in exchange for the release of captured agents and "a smooth transition". Silva suffered, and suffered, and suffered through the Chinese's torture, and once he realized that he was just another victim of M's cold calculation, he tried killing himself with a hydrogen cyanide capsule hidden in one of his molars. Unfortunately, the hydrogen cyanide only fried Silva's insides - and his brain. "Life clung to him like a disease," and it clung on so that he could face M one last time... and kill her.

Skyfall is a Bond film like no other. Some would argue that it's not a Bond film, at all, and that's fair... and stupid. If there's one thing I've learned during my latest rewatch of the franchise, it's that the franchise knows how to adapt and change. For example, the franchise transitioned through blaxploitation, kung fu and Star Wars/science fiction, and in 2012, it transitioned to The Dark Knight. Silva is The Joker. Bond is brooding on rooftops. Bond's Kincade (Albert Finney) is Batman's Alfred. The music goes Zimmer-esque when Bond is clinging to the bottom of an elevator. It even borrows the "I'm in this cell because I allowed myself to be" plot line. Sure, that makes Skyfall sound derivative, but it's actually a symbiotic relationship that director Sam Mendes has directly acknowledged. Besides The Dark Knight influences, Skyfall also separates itself from the Bond franchise with stunning cinematography and an incredibly sharp script. I mean, Silva's rat and coconut speech should have earned the script and Javier Bardem an Oscar!

I could go on and on about Skyfall, the mother/son dynamic between Bond and M (and M and Silva), how M should stop clicking on click bait, how Bond alludes to having sex with men (he's actually just referring to having his balls slapped), how I cry at the line "I did get one thing right", but that'd be one long review, so I'll just keep it short and say I love everything about this movie.

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