If you haven't already heard, the new James Bond flick 'Skyfall' is one of the best in decades, maybe the best since the Sean Connery movies. 'Casino Royale' rocked and introduced us to the new, improved, cool-not-cheesy Daniel Craig incarnation of 007. 'Quantum of Solace' didn’t come close, but now Bond is back and this one's gonna be a classic. Here’s why.
Daniel Craig Is The Man
Everybody has their favorite Bond, right? Before Daniel Craig started seducing gorgeous women with the surefire "Bond. James Bond” pickup line, most rational people would probably say that baritone Scotsman Sean Connery was the man, right? Roger Moore was fine, Timothy Dalton we can probably just chalk up to a 1980s mentality (that dimple in his chin? No thanks), and Pierce Brosnan was... obvious.
Instead of being the typical Bond with chiseled bone structure and a little wink, Craig's face looks more like a punching bag, in a good way. He doesn't seem like he walked out of a fancy trailer onto a set. He looks like a spy who's lived through knife fights in Istanbul and machine gun fire in the Congo. As fantastical as Bond movies can be, Craig feels real.
Javier Bardem With Blond Hair
Talk about a mug. You don't mess with a guy who looks like Bardem. In 'Skyfall,' he's Raoul Silva, a super creepy cyber terrorist and former MI6 agent with a weird blonde dye job and a twisted sense of justice. He's unpredictable, he's hyper intelligent, and he's a true sicko. Think The Joker mixed with Hannibal Lecter. Wouldn't be surprised if he gets an Oscar nomination.
The Rooftop Motorcycle Chase
It wouldn't be a Bond movie if it didn't start with a balls-out, epic chase scene. 'Skyfall' director Sam Mendes doesn't disappoint. Who cares if jamming over thin rooftops on motorcycles and fighting to the death on top of a train that's speeding under a tunnel isn't realistic -- this is James Bond. It's not unrealistic -- it's awesome.
Death by Komodo Dragon
In the world of 'Skyfall,' komodo dragons aren't just oversize lizards you gawk at when you hit up the reptile exhibit at the zoo. They have razor sharp teeth and toxic saliva, and they roam around as decoration in exclusive Chinese nightclubs. Let’s just say Bond finds a way to put one of these deadly dragons to use.
Best Bond Move of All Time
Okay, so say you do find yourself being shot at by a terrorist on top of a speeding train after enduring a motorcycle chase across rooftops and you tempt death by falling down into a passenger car and nearly losing your limbs. Do you roll around on the ground in your torn jeans and hoodie mumbling, “F--k that hurt”? No. If you're James Bond, you land on your feet and ever so calmly adjust the pricey cufflinks on your custom-made, slim-fit designer suit, of course.
The End of Exploding Pens
Crazy, ridiculous Bond gadgets are part of the brand: personalized guns, the dagger shoe with a poisoned blade, revolving license plates, cigarettes capable of shooting mini rockets, and of course the exploding pen.
During the Roger Moore days, the Bond franchise went a little overboard with cutesy gadgets. In 'Skyfall' the filmmakers get back to basics. Part of the theme of the flick is how old-fashioned espionage methods are getting destroyed by more modern, technological advances -- like cyber terrorists. This time Q (Ben Whishaw) tells Bond they don't really do exploding pens anymore, and hands him a gun. Of course, Q is a master hacker who would probably make Anonymous nervous, so they're not totally living in the past.
Most Cinematic Use of Jellyfish Ever
No, there aren't atomic jellyfish swimming around a fancy aquarium, but there is a visually stunning scene where Bond tracks a bad dude into an empty Shanghai high rise one night. The lights are out, and giant blue jellyfish look like they're moving across the walls as Bond slinks around in the shadows. It's gorgeous and disorienting, kind of like a fun house designed by Philippe Starck. It's what a Bond scene should be: cinematic as hell.
Your New Favorite French Actress
Except for maybe the most humorless staunch feminist who ever lived, we all love the Bond girls. They're basically eye candy with cool names, and luckily they've gotten more interesting and smart as the world has realized that beautiful women do, in fact, have brains in their head. In 'Skyfall,' French actress Bérénice Marlohe plays Severine, who might be half-Chinese and half-French? Who cares. She’s gorgeous, interesting, and she wears pretty rad dresses.
'Skyfall' is all about appreciating old espionage tactics while accepting a good computer hacker in order to keep up with the baddies, and that's best portrayed in the fight scenes and shootouts.
Remember the old William Tell “let's shoot apples off people's heads” story? There's a riff on that. And look out for the great Albert Finney as a burly old Scottish dude who knows his way around a sawed-off shotgun. The final face-off in 'Skyfall' is epic and classic all at once.