Skyfall is just one long, increasingly boring display of moviemaking tricks, without a hint of plot or drama or character to be had anywhere. I could only imagine poor Ian Fleming turning over in his grave.
Frequently, a new acquaintance will say, "I'd like to ask you to tell me what you really did for the CIA, but I know that you would then have to kill me." This is supposed to be funny, but it troubles me because it shows such a fundamental misunderstanding.
So when are poems used appropriately in movies? They tend to work in two cases: when the grandeur of a scene is already elevated, or when a scene brings the grandeur of a poem down to its level. I've collected a few of my favorite examples.
The overwhelming stench of nostalgia, regret, decay and desuetude in Skyfall -- perfectly symbolized by that grim Scottish manse -- made me wonder if this was supposed to be a eulogy. I hadn't come to bury Bond, but to cheer him on.
Necessity is the mother of invention and smaller budgets almost always beget more interesting films. For MGM and its fortunes going forward, Skyfall is the comeback it needed, the ultimate symbol of its recovery. Resurrection
This is Daniel Craig's third Bond film. He hit a high with Casino Royale but was a letdown in Quantum of Solace. It seems the makers of these movies are still trying to decide exactly who Craig's James Bond is.
Mendes, who previously worked with Craig when the star had a key supporting role in 2002's Road to Perdition, brings a methodical, refined eye to the proceedings, helped along by the luxurious cinematography by Roger Deakins.