Skyfall. You don’t find out what it refers to until about ¾ the way through the movie. I won’t be a spoiler, but it’s a place best left forgotten.
I’m not that much of a James Bond movie fan. I don’t care for gratuitous violence and have always found the films, while mildly entertaining, formulaic and too male-chauvinistic.
Though dubious, I go to each new one; it’s a fun date. The latest offering Skyfall, marking the 50th anniversary of James Bond movies, proved better than I expected. At some point during the 2 ½ hour movie, I said, “I like this one.”
Why? What makes it different?
True, there’s much that’s familiar: the theme song, the “Bond, James Bond” introduction, and of course the shaken not stirred martini. There’s a damsel in distress and a mild love interest, a colleague this time, and of course a bad guy who Bond has to take down. The film begins in Istanbul and quickly moves to China, then Macau, and London, where most of the action occurs. This time, the villain, played by Javier Barden, is a former MI6 agent, who seeks revenge against “M”, the agency’s head, played by Judi Dench.
I won’t give the entire plot away. What I liked, in addition to Daniel Craig eye-candy, was that it gave some of Bond’s own backstory, which I felt made him more interesting. Craig’s Bond is a more beaten up version of his predecessors, and for this one he’s nearly an action figure, able to survive un-human lengths of time underwater.
Ian Fleming’s books initiated me to James Bond and his exploits. I remember reading some of the novels in my pre-teens. I’m not sure how they ended up in our house as most of my parents’ books are non-fiction, usually history and politics. But I remember being that prepubescent girl and slurping up the sex scenes like a chocolate smoothie.
A perfect Sunday afternoon escape.
Much more provocative, is The Other Son or Le fils de l’autre, a French film about two 18- year -old boys who were accidently switched at birth. One is raised as an Israeli Jew, the as a West Bank Palestinian. When the supposedly Jewish son registers for the army, he finds out his blood type doesn’t match his parents. What follows is a story of identity amid disparate cultures. It’s every parents’ nightmare, and a family love story not to be missed.