The last Bond movie I saw was The World Is Not Enough, from 1999! It was so long ago that I didn’t even blog about it. It’s not that I don’t like Bond movies (even if they are very formula-driven) but I guess I never got around to watching them.
I’m only almost 2 years late (and it took me five months to get around to) watching Quantum of Solace and I can finally say that I was impressed by it. I don’t know whether the Bond formula has changed (i.e., there is continuity), or whether the writing is different; but the back history (who’s Vesper?) was terribly vague. I didn’t know the why, but the what was pretty obvious. The lack of back story (also: who is Quantum and why do we care?), surprisingly, provided sufficient cognitive load to make the story interesting to me; even serving to help me suspend my disbelief of the random situations Bond was placed in.
It also felt that QoS was Bond updated to 2008/2009 style and sensibilities. Sure, the tux, martini, and glamour were still there but the cheesiness was removed. There was no “Bond, James Bond” line nor were there villains with ridiculous names. There was no Q (ok, well he’s dead) nor requisite gadget introduction scene (instead they cleverly integrated it in because we can get that); but in a way, the formula was distilled down to the essentials that make the series entertaining for our generation.
The action scenes were great; I especially liked the fight in the Italian museum because it seemed organic and fresh. It felt like there was every single chase imaginable: car chase, boat chase, plane chase, even Parkour. And they fit in gun fights, blunt instruments, and hand-to-hand combat. How they managed to fit in a story at all is beyond me. But they did. QoS was great fun, and four out of five stars.