Colleen Coover Rotating Header Image

Delayed Solace

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He's all dirty and sweaty here, but he cleans up nice later.

You know how sometimes you can like the idea of something, but not really like the thing itself? Yeah, that’s how it was with me and James Bond, until I saw Daniel Craig in Casino Royale. There was this great character who used his wit, power, and sexuality to deal with big international conspiracies, but he had been this goofy joke of a hero in the movies my whole life. With Casino, all the silly tropes got left behind and we were left with a really great action movie.

Paul and I finally went to see Quantum Of Solace the other night at our local second-run theater pub. We are not big on going to films in their first weeks, and I find that a pint of beer makes any movie that much more enjoyable. I was worried that I would be disappointed, because I had gotten the impression that a lot of people had found Solace to be a bit meh. But no! It was fun! Not quite as tight in the plot as Casino and the action scenes were edited a bit more choppily, but it kept moving right along, Craig played it cool with an edge of rage, and I was never bored. I was particularly satisfied with a scene that tidied up a loose end that had been bugging me from Casino; one that gave Bond the infinitesimal bit of solace referred to in the title. The opening credit sequence of purple shadows over golden sand made me nostalgic for old Omni magazines, not entirely in a good way. I came away from the theater happy.

As if to accentuate the contrast between Bonds, the ION network has been showing a 007 marathon of Roger Moore’s more dubious achievements. Tonight I watched the tail end of A View To A Kill and the pre-title sequence of Octopussy. HAW!

6 Comments on “Delayed Solace”

  1. #1 jope
    on Jan 30th, 2009 at 9:01 am

    Oh man, I had a HUGE stack of Omni back issues in my closet as a kid. Good times.

    TBS, which was a mere block away from our campus, used to schedule a Bond marathon every year during finals week. Those bastards probably were the death of many an undergrad’s college career.

  2. #2 Kevin Church
    on Jan 30th, 2009 at 9:27 am

    Casino Royale had to do a lot of world-building and setup, something that they really didn’t need at all for this film, as it’s the direct sequel. I think audiences were put off by the almost Mametian leanness in the script, where Bond knows what he’s doing, the bad guys know what they’re doing, and there’s no need to just talk about it. You have to pay attention to know what happens in the movie and I think audiences aren’t primed for that anymore.

  3. #3 Zaftigs
    on Jan 30th, 2009 at 12:39 pm

    I just love him….i don’t care if he is dirty or sweaty….he kills me!!!

  4. #4 Paul DeBenedetto
    on Feb 2nd, 2009 at 5:58 am

    Where Royale succeeded (and where I think Solace failed) is that it reinvented the franchise while at the same time not completely removing every bit of the Bond formula. The goofy, jokeyness of the Bond franchise was sort of my favorite part. Solace was ok, but I liked it better when it was called The Bourne Supremacy.

  5. #5 Colleen
    on Feb 2nd, 2009 at 8:37 am

    But really, you strip Solace down to its bones, and you’ve got the premise for Goldfinger. Multi-national rich dude plots to cut off natural resource to inflate its value. And of course, poor Miss Fields on the bed. I just like it that actual tech has caught up with and surpassed the old spy tech in the old movies. What’s Bond need with a camera pen? Every kid in the Third World has a camera phone!

  6. #6 Paul DeBenedetto
    on Feb 2nd, 2009 at 10:13 am