In celebration and anticipation of the upcoming installment of the James Bond franchise (24th to be exact) with the very exciting title of 'Spectre' I think it is fitting to look back at the last one we got three years ago by the same director. If you are a movie fan there is probably a chance you have seen 'Skyfall' seeing as it really blew up back in 2012 (almost doubling the amount of money the highest grossing James Bond movie had grossed before that) but incase you have not, do not worry as I will keep this a spoiler free review.

When 'Skyfall' came out it more than exceeded everyone's expectations both critically and at the box office. I do not think anyone could have predicted that it would gross over a billion dollars worldwide but I am extremely happy that it just happened to be my personal favorite Bond movie. Of course there are problems to be found but none of them can even come close to distracting you from your enjoyment of the film. This is about as perfect a Bond movie can get not many other action movies have come close to matching it since its release. I said in my review of 'Quantum of Solace' that all the movie apart from that one has been able to conjure up at least ONE memorable scene or moment - well the entirety of 'Skyfall' should count as a memorable moment because the whole thing just oozes "memorable". Every scene transitions so perfectly to the next and the pacing is spot on.

While the entirety of 'Quantum of Solace' was very bland and forgettable - in 'Skyfall' practically every scene is memorable. I did see the movie twice in the theater back when it was first released but I had not seen it after that so I did find myself surprised at just how much I remembered about the movie - which should speak lengths about how much everything worked here. From the knockout opening action scene that is the best opener a Bond movie has ever had - to the best song a Bond movie has ever had - to the most intriguing plot a Bond movie has ever had - to the best villain a Bond movie has ever had. Basically, almost everything you can imagine works. The biggest flaw you could point to is that the villain relies a lot on computer hacking - meaning there are some conveniences in his plan but again, movies have those and they do enhance the viewing experience.

Naturally if you humanize the character of Bond, there will come a time when a movie about him getting too old for this shit will be made and 'Skyfall' is the embodiment of that plotline. Luckily it does not feel like your standard iteration of it as the writers clearly have an end game in mind here. Yes, Bond is starting to lose his touch, but he is certainly not going to give up. I also liked that it was not just "oh he is getting too old to do all of these things", they had him get injured so he would not exactly be in his A-game even if he was as young as he was in 'Casino Royale'. This helps to add a lot more tension as we see him continuously missing shots throughout the film when he is usually pin point accurate with a gun. Originally I was a bit unenthusiastic on the writers going in this direction so soon as at the time I was expecting Craig to stay on for many more movies to come and it seemed a bit early to bring out the "Bond is getting old" card - but it works and 'Spectre' might even be his last so this IS the right time for this specific storyline to take place.

This movie was filmed by the master himself Roger Deakins who turned this into the most gorgeous Bond movie ever made. There are so many shots throughout the film that could easily make for a wallpaper on your desktop and it continues to be an absolute crime that he has yet to actually pick up an Academy award for his amazing work (he was even nominated for this film). And just like everything else is practically perfect about the film - Adele's song is also the best Bond song of all-time (at least THAT one picked up the Oscar) that perfectly encapsulates the whole movie.

Overall, 'Skyfall' is my favorite Bond movie. The plot is really engaging and smartly written. Daniel Craig is a revelation in the role. Roger Deakins work as the cinematographer is a sight to behold, and Javier Bardem as the memorable Silva is the BEST Bond villain ever. Basically this is the equivalent of "lighting in a bottle", it all just works and judging by the critical reception; it is going to be a while before any future Bond movie manages to top 'Skyfall'.


- Lucas


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