This is the next installment in my look back to the James Bond 007 series in anticipation for the new installment, Spectre coming out on November 6th. If you are interested in any of my earlier installments, click here.
Media mogul Elliot Carver (Jonathan Pryce) aspires that his new news empire could reach every country on the globe, but the Chinese government does not want him to broadcast there. Carver, however, doesn’t take no for an answer and decides to use his media empire to fuel flames of war between Great Britain and China. Thankfully, Agent 007, James Bond (Pierce Brosnan) is on to the insane news tycoon and travels to China to stop him with the help of Chinese secret agent Wai Lin (Michelle Yeoh).
So this entry definitely has some big shoes to fill following the previous film, Goldeneye which I liked alot. I don’t think this film is at the same level as Goldeneye but it is not a bad film. The film started off rather good pre-credits scene which was pretty exciting and was a little anti-climactic. I thought the plot in this one was very interesting, maybe the most interesting for a Bond film as it consisted of someone manipulating world powers behind the scenes for their benefit. Sure, past Bond films have dealt with people manipulating world powers behind the scenes but I thought it was done here in a more original way. Since the plot consisted mostly of Bond and Lin just chasing Carver around from place to place, there wasn’t as much action as I would have liked but there was some nice gadget stuff. By place to place, I only mean two places because they were only in two places, Hamburg and Saigon to be more specific. Sure, there was some action involved in their encounters but there wasn’t as much as I wanted. I guess it may not be fair but after seeing Goldeneye, my expectations may have been too high. They did not go to many places here but I feel like they stayed too long in one of them, Hamburg. I thought doing this slowed down the plot as it featured a subplot involving Carver’s wife Paris (Teri Hatcher) which was useless and didn’t add anything so the pacing could have been better. Jonathan Pryce, as the main villain of the film Elliot Carver, was a calm. soft-spoken, egomaniac and he did a great job at that. Brosnan as Bond was better here than he was in Goldeneye. He was good at the action, he had charm with others including the ladies, he was witty, and he was a little more ruthless here (which was something I’ve rarely seen in the series with Dalton in License to Kill coming close). Michelle Yeoh was great here as Wai Lin as she was strong, independent woman who could take care of herself. By that I mean she can fight with the best of them using her karate (of course it’s because she’s Asian). I thought the choreography of her fight scenes was well done as they were very entertaining and fun to watch. It was a shame that we did not get to see too much of her. I don’t often mention this because I do not want to sound like I’m repeating myself but I would like to acknowledge the classic Bond supporting characters M (Judi Dench), Q (Desmond Llewelyn), and Moneypenny (Samantha Bond not related to James Bond) as they were all great here, especially Q who, because of Llewelyn, is a great character. Overall, this another good entry with an ambitious story but it could have been executed just a touch better.
Next: The World is Not Enough