29 Nov 2012

Sky fall

When I was a lad my dad took me to my first James bond Movie. It was View to a kill with Roger Moore, which has given me a nostalgia for Mr Moors portrayal of Mr Bond. But it also made me a fan of James Bond for life. And why not? Beautiful women, exotic foreign locations, guns, girls and gadgets. Defend the world for Queen and country, marvellous!

The Bond film franchise has lasted  23 films over 50 years with with 6 (proper) bonds portrayed on the big screen. Sean Connery with his cheeky sex appeal, Roger Moore the playboy spy, Timothy Dalton as a sophisticated killer, Peirce Brosnan with his empathic witty Bond, George Lazenby with his, well height? and currently Daniel Craig.  Each Bond brought something new to the role, except poor George Lazenby who was had the unenviable job as Sean Connery's replacement and also  Her majesties secret service,  that bucked the trend of the earlier films. Too much for the fans to stomach, George was out and Sean had to return.

But you probably know the films and the previous Bonds, and want to know what about Skyfall.
Well I am going to skip the synopsis and just discuss the film.

Where Casino Royale took Bond fans to a grittier darker Bond, way from the invisible cars and Madonna cameos and more representative of Ian Flemming's character in the books, Skyfall effortlessly combines Daniel Craigs new Bond with the class and style of Sean Connerys classic Bond films. Skyfall is at once a origin story and the natural progression of the franchise.

Daniel Craig portrays a tough, smart relentless Bond as always, but Skyfall reveals the chinks in his armour.As the world changes is Bond a relic of the cold war? Daniel Craig is charming, stylish, deadly and a little poignant. I like all the actors that have portrayed Bond, but Daniel Craig is now one of my favourites. He has made Bond his own.

Dame Judi Dench is a wonderful M. Smart and strong in a mans world, she retains control even as that world collapses around her. She is the perfect M for Craig. She doesn't put up with any of his nonsense for a second. She give a great performance, and what you would expect from Dame Judy.

Javier Badem is making a fortune portraying Hollywood villains and after his oscar winning performance in No country for old men, he is now Silver in Skyfall. Javier is a camp, mad and also a sympathetic villain. Silver doesn't have some mad plan to conquer the world, he just wants revenge. Silver is probably the best antagonist I have seen in years.

I really like Sam Mendes the director. Road to Perdition is fantastic, and in Skyfall Mendes creates a story encompassing emotion, violence and humour. Mendes with Roger Deakins also creates some stunning scenes, I love aesthetics and Mendes has made Skyfall beautiful. Even the arse end of Scotland!

From the opening credits to the final credits Skyfall is dangerous, smart and sexy. And has been done true to what we expect from a Bond film. Actually not what we expect, but what we hope for.

There was some criticism of Bond drinking a Heineken and not a Martini, and also a little homo eroticism. Well it is ludicrous to drink martinis every bloody hour, and no Bond does not swap teams at all.  Some critics need to walk in the sun for five minutes and get their heads out of their arses.

If you have not seen it then try and avoid reviews with synopsis's and trailers. I did and was rewarded with pleasant surprises.

With a martini in one hand, and my girl by my side in a great theatre, I cannot remember enjoying myself so much at a film. I think Dad would have loved it.

I give Skyfall Nine Monkeys!

1 Nov 2012

Darth Mouse

So the big news at the moment is that on 30 October 2012 Lucasfilm Ltd has been purchased By Disney for $4.05 Billion US.  That is S4,927,250,000 Pacific pesos.

That is roughly 2,357,535,885 Flake bars from countdown.  And that is type one diabetes!
Not so hot after you have scoffed a billion m'dear.

George Lucas has said in regards to the star wars films
"Why would I make any more,when everybody yells at you all the time and says what a terrible person you are?” http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/22/magazine/george-lucas-red-tails.html?pagewanted=all&_r=1&

Lucas feels that Disney is large enough and was the best fit for the franchises future. Included in the deal is shares in Disney, so he is set for life.

And Disney? Well for them it means they own Marvel, Pixar, The Muppet's, and now Star wars and Indiana Jones. That is a sizable slice of pop culture right there. If they Merged with Warner Brothers they could probably buy Greece and make the best theme park in the world! Actually they could probably buy Greece, Portugal, and have Armenia thrown in for free. 

Lucasfilm have had ideas for episodes 7,8, and 9rolling around for years, or so the rumours have it. And George will consult on the production of Episode seven which is being developed now.

So for the Star wars fans, die hard or other wise what does this mean?

Well lets look at the pros and cons.

Donald Duck as Han Solo is still better than Jar Jar
Frankly the films cannot get any worse. I am not a fan-boy, but Star Wars was a seminal trilogy for me. The original three films are still cool and enjoyable to watch to this day. I was as excited as anyone to hear that the prequels were being made and as disappointed as most. I can still find many good things about the first three episodes, but they are bad movies.  If Disney create a Micky mouse version of Star Wars it would suck more than Jar Jar Binks and Hayden Christensen. 

It will rock!
Disney have the money, and the business acumen to get this right. They have purchased a valuable property and if they want to get their 4 Billion dollars worth, they have to make movies that the fans will enjoy. 

This is it kids
If you want more Star Wars, and you want good Star Wars then the purchase of the rights by a large production company is the only sensible conclusion.

 It will suck!

In a desperate  money fuelled attempt to recoup their investment they produce a film not just for fans but for everyone. Personally I doubt they will screw up Episode seven because Disney is now in it for the long haul, but then look at Alien versus Predator. 

 The fans
Despite the whining by hysterical fat nerds in their mothers basement making their Sims2 girl friends look like Leia, Lucas has been very generous to fans. Lucasfilm has actively encouraged fan films to be made. Here is a site where creative fans relive or create new stories in the Star Wars universe.

That all may stop now that Disney owns the rights, and that would be a shame. 

Looking forward I hope that Disney honours the legacy well and lets fans young and old to continue in their efforts in homages. I also hope that episode seven will be good. 

But I guess I am just a romantic at heart.  What do you think? do you think it is a good move or the final sell out by Lucas. 

Like to hear your thoughts.