…And we’re off into the Pierce Brosnan Bond-era! But some things still stay the same, because we can still rely on those evil Russian Commies to fill our bad-guy dance card. Pierce Brosnan-Bond is also squarely within the late 80s/early 90s TOTAL ACTION MOVIE!!! genre. I mean, his falling speed is enough so that he can tumble into a plane going down and rescue it? I don’t even think this is something that Timothy Dalton would have thought a good idea. The continuity theory of Bond comes up again, when after the credits we see the movie is set “9 years later.”
Plot in twenty words or less: Alan Cumming plays a deranged, pervy Russian hacker. What else do you need to know?
How it’s aged: One of the most memorable lines is “Maybe you can finish debriefing each other at Guantanamo” — clearly spoken before everyone knew the post 9/11-Gitmo.
Something that was just weird and/or WTF y’all: They’re obviously trying to bring back a lot of the quippy early Bond humor. I don’t know how well Brosnan can pull that off…
Obligatory feminist commentary: Between forgettable-Natalya, terrifying-Xenia, and badass-M, there’s a lot of feminist analysis to throw down on. There’s a not-at-all subtle commentary about how Bond has entered a real ball-breaking era — figuratively when M says she has the cojones to send him to his death if need be, but also quite literally with Xenia’s absurd thigh-maneuvers. It probably won’t surprise any readers of this blog that I’m a diehard Judi Dench-as-M fan, so I’m pretty darn excited about her arrival. Fun fact: Judi Dench’s M is based on Stella Rimington who totally started her career as an archivist — my own occupation. I always thought that if it weren’t for my lefty politics, I’d make a damn good secret agent. Archivists are pretty good at reading between the lines…
Completely hypothetical cultural reference points: There are lots of 1990s-esque touchstones in this movie. The most obvious ones were Xenia’s Monica-esque hairstyle, and her smoking a cigar was reminiscent of the 1990s revival of cigar use (remember the First Wives Club poster?)
Superficial Thing that did not Amuse Me: The annoying American CIA agent who wouldn’t stop calling 007 Jimmy/Jimbo. Ugh, go away.
Superficial Thing that highly Amused Me: There’s a great scene set in what appears to be a government archives when Bond and Natalya break out and then commence the tank chase scene. I’m ready for James Bond to go whole-hog and dig around in the archives to turn up some juicy leads. Archives in movies, always a winning combination.
Interesting and possibly dubious thing I learned from Wikipedia: The opening scene’s bungee jump “set a record for the highest bungee jump off a fixed structure”
Administrative information concerning this viewing:
Drinks consumed: Sierra Nevada Summer ale
Food eaten: Steamed green beans and this awesome beet and bean veggie burger.
Viewed on: July 19, 2014
Viewing Partner: Fiance and the Cat
*Not her real name. All my viewing buddies are getting Bond-girl aliases.