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CHWolf
03-21-2013, 04:36 PM
So... I was surprised to find there was no real Skyfall thread, just one for the teaser.

I finally saw this as it inched up my Netflix list. I'm not one for Bond films, but after hearing all the ranting and raving about it, I gave it a shot.

Whoa, what a crapfest!

Spoilers...


Here's what went wrong.


1.) Destroying loyal fans' work. There's a huge "theory" on the web that "James Bond" is the name given to the top agent, regardless of who he actually is. So all the past films actually happened in that universe, and each time the actor changed, it's just because they retired and a new "James Bond" stepped up. In Skyfall, they go into Bond's past and irrevocably PROVE that he actually is THE James Bond... even to the point of showing his parents' gravestones marked with the last name "BOND" as a full and final middle finger to overzealous fans.

Plus this means James Bond has been giving his legal birth name to every murderer and despot ever. This puts his family, old friends, neighbors, EVERYone at risk of death and/or torture. It's the reason Spider-Man wears the mask, bro!

2.) The theme. How can you use Adele and not have her belt anything out? It was like she was recovering from throat surgery. Can't understand how this won anything...

3.) The villain. He only shows, what, an hour into the film? And he's super-sexy-gay? Really? This seems like something they would've explored back in the 70s or maybe early 2000s... but right now it seems a Hell of a lot like "Aren't big gay guys scary? They can subdue and molest an honest man!"

Ugh. There were a thousand ways they could've pursued the general concept without outright stereotyping what I assume to be one of very few gay/bi in the Bond franchise.

4.) The plot makes no sense. Everything relies heavily on absolute chance. There were several points where Bond could've easily been killed if luck didn't favor him (yes, WE the audience know it will, but characters in the story don't) even though his survival was absolutely critical to the overall evil scheme. If Bond dies before the villain is captured, the scheme is over - but this is given little regard and the evildoer(s) just go full-tilt at killing him.

Plus, the escape where everything happens in a split second... where the villain's laptop automatically hacks the agency's computers and lets him out... where the villain has to meet up with THIS guy to get something as he passes... then THESE people... then he has to have a TRAIN go by right at the exact moment Bond is under it...

Well...

Wouldn't that be kind of fucked if the agency had tried to see what was on his computer... I don't know... one second earlier OR later than the moment they randomly chose?

...

Or maybe even tomorrow around seven-ish?


5.) The time-frames are screwed. How old is this version of Bond? I ask because the house he grew up in as a child is SEVERELY messed up. Like hundreds of years of decay "messed up". Maybe it was already a moldering, broken-down crap heap when he was a kid? I guess that would explain it, but it's asking too much of the audience to guess.

Where did the "Bondmobile" come from? Did he inherit it from another agent? Did he buy it? Did he retrofit it himself? Was it his to begin with?

Let's explore why none of these explanations work.

Inherited - It's gassed up, tuned up, and ready to go straight out of storage. If it was a relic that just came with the job that wouldn't be the case.

Bought - Why? Where? How? What?

Retrofitted - He'd pick a less flashy and outlandish vehicle, as is specifically pointed out in the film.

His to begin with - Again, how old is he? If you're going to say he's immortal or re-born every few decades, explain why they can't simply "undo" his job-threatening wounds.

There are a bunch of things that don't add up with the car, but let's leave that alone now since that's already a pretty obnoxious amount of text dedicated to why it doesn't work.

Let's look at the island the bad guy inhabits. Again, the state of decay doesn't match the story. Windows are broken out, buildings are crumbling, and a gigantic statue has toppled over with no likely cause except the passage of time.

Unless everyone on that island was living in this abject ruin before he came along, this guy must have an aura that causes advanced decay. He used computer technology to simulate a radiation leak that cleared the island of people... so given the far-flung location and the "humble" looks of the place, we can assume they weren't wired for that shit in the 80s/90s. So in maybe ten or so years all the windows broke and everything fell over.

(Plus, really great to store tons of high-tech mainframes and shit where they'll get continually rained on as things leak.)


6.) Bond loses.

I don't know if there's ever been a Bond film where the villain totally 100% wins in every aspect of his plot, but now Skyfall is that film.

Villain: Ex-Agent who wants to kill M.

Goal: Kill M.

Plan: Trick Bond so he can kill M.

Secondary plan: Die because life sucks.

(Nevermind the fact he could've flown into England and shot her in the street at any time, ever.)


So what happens? He tricks Bond, he tricks everyone, he fails a few times only due to being a bad shot, and in the end M is dead because one of the men he hired succeeded in killing her.

...

Also, the villain dies right after attempting to kill himself. Way to give the man every single thing he asks for, James.



And finally, who's going to stop those YouTube videos exposing undercover agents every week? They're either automated or done by unknown henchmen since it's clear the villain wasn't just sitting at home in his underoos keying everything in.


But hey...

At least the film looked pretty.


If you loved the film, great! Love it! More power to you, and I'm glad. However, that doesn't make script/plot flaws disappear. :)

Bishop
03-21-2013, 04:40 PM
I liked it, but I try not to over analyze these things.

CHWolf
03-21-2013, 07:43 PM
It takes a lot to make me start noticing these things. Heh.

Justice41
03-21-2013, 09:09 PM
It was a snoozefest. I remember nothing about it.

CHWolf
03-21-2013, 10:38 PM
Forgot to mention, instead of Bond and M riding off to his boyhood home and leaving clues so the villain can find them, why not just do the same thing with the clues and have them lead someplace they aren't? Why not drop M off anonymously at an impossible-to-guess motel or foreclosed home or homeless shelter or open field on the way, THEN have the final stand-off? Baaahh.

Weird story.

Angel
03-22-2013, 05:57 AM
Um.....This movie was a piece of shit really. Why did Bond just let them kill that chick when right after he stood there and let it happen he killed and disarmed everyone? Dumbness.

Evan Henry
03-22-2013, 06:11 AM
It was like she was recovering from throat surgery.

I laughed at this. :laugh:

Comix Obsession
03-22-2013, 10:09 AM
Yeaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhh, but it was great, really. I loved it, as did everyone else apart from you guys, apparently!

Normally I wouldn't use that as a reason to like a film, there's an awful lot of crap out there, but this is one of those films that deserved, and lived up to, the hype. Great film.

Comix Obsession
03-22-2013, 10:47 AM
I couldn't let it go without responding to your criticisms, since some of them seem to be written for comedic merit more than anything else.


Here's what went wrong.


1.) Destroying loyal fans' work. There's a huge "theory" on the web that "James Bond" is the name given to the top agent, regardless of who he actually is. So all the past films actually happened in that universe, and each time the actor changed, it's just because they retired and a new "James Bond" stepped up. In Skyfall, they go into Bond's past and irrevocably PROVE that he actually is THE James Bond... even to the point of showing his parents' gravestones marked with the last name "BOND" as a full and final middle finger to overzealous fans.

That's a theory that has been circulating for a while - I don't know how long but I've only heard it in the last year. I also can't imagine it's taken that seriously by many fans. I haven't seen or heard anyone pissed off by this, and there's no way they would even try to make a film using this theory, because it certainly isn't official, and it's been debunked in previous installments even before it existed as an 'idea'.

Plus this means James Bond has been giving his legal birth name to every murderer and despot ever. This puts his family, old friends, neighbors, EVERYone at risk of death and/or torture. It's the reason Spider-Man wears the mask, bro!

He's an orphan. He joined the Navy. He enrolled in the service. He has no friends, family, nor neighbours. It's made pretty clear that Bond is a loner throughout the film. It's also made VERY clear that he has very little regard for other people. His enemies know he's not a man you get at through other people, which is why this film was so clever, because the villain found the one person that Bond needs, even if he doesn't realise it.

2.) The theme. How can you use Adele and not have her belt anything out? It was like she was recovering from throat surgery. Can't understand how this won anything...

Because it was a great song? I'm not a fan of Adele, but this theme was amazing. It didn't deserve to win because Adele sang it differently to everything you can hear on her album?

3.) The villain. He only shows, what, an hour into the film? And he's super-sexy-gay? Really? This seems like something they would've explored back in the 70s or maybe early 2000s... but right now it seems a Hell of a lot like "Aren't big gay guys scary? They can subdue and molest an honest man!"

Ugh. There were a thousand ways they could've pursued the general concept without outright stereotyping what I assume to be one of very few gay/bi in the Bond franchise.

Explain the stereotyping? I didn't see it. Would you rather have a straight tough-guy villain? It was an interesting take on a Bond villain, and the fact that he didn't seem to belong in his time gave him a twisted, warped edge that worked.


4.) The plot makes no sense. Everything relies heavily on absolute chance. There were several points where Bond could've easily been killed if luck didn't favor him (yes, WE the audience know it will, but characters in the story don't) even though his survival was absolutely critical to the overall evil scheme. If Bond dies before the villain is captured, the scheme is over - but this is given little regard and the evildoer(s) just go full-tilt at killing him.

Plus, the escape where everything happens in a split second... where the villain's laptop automatically hacks the agency's computers and lets him out... where the villain has to meet up with THIS guy to get something as he passes... then THESE people... then he has to have a TRAIN go by right at the exact moment Bond is under it...

Well...

Wouldn't that be kind of fucked if the agency had tried to see what was on his computer... I don't know... one second earlier OR later than the moment they randomly chose?

...

Or maybe even tomorrow around seven-ish?

I'm convinced you've never watched a Bond film. Seriously.


5.) The time-frames are screwed. How old is this version of Bond? I ask because the house he grew up in as a child is SEVERELY messed up. Like hundreds of years of decay "messed up". Maybe it was already a moldering, broken-down crap heap when he was a kid? I guess that would explain it, but it's asking too much of the audience to guess.

SEVERELY? It's an old house. It's been packed up, it's dusty. It's empty. I didn't see any other signs that would indicate Bond is a million years old. Bond is about 40, I guess, and that house looks like it hasn't been used since he left, or sometime thereafter.


Where did the "Bondmobile" come from? Did he inherit it from another agent? Did he buy it? Did he retrofit it himself? Was it his to begin with?

Maybe. Maybe he bought it. Why not? An old friend of mine has one, he bought the shell and engine, did it up himself and now it's a mint-condition, very valuable Aston Martin. He's a boiler-repairman. I'm pretty sure an MI6 agent could save for one, especially one who is contracted to kill terrorists. So yeah, he bought it on ebay.


Let's explore why none of these explanations work.

Inherited - It's gassed up, tuned up, and ready to go straight out of storage. If it was a relic that just came with the job that wouldn't be the case.

Bought - Why? Where? How? What?

Retrofitted - He'd pick a less flashy and outlandish vehicle, as is specifically pointed out in the film.

His to begin with - Again, how old is he? If you're going to say he's immortal or re-born every few decades, explain why they can't simply "undo" his job-threatening wounds.

There are a bunch of things that don't add up with the car, but let's leave that alone now since that's already a pretty obnoxious amount of text dedicated to why it doesn't work.

He bought it on ebay. Why is this so hard to fathom?

Let's look at the island the bad guy inhabits. Again, the state of decay doesn't match the story. Windows are broken out, buildings are crumbling, and a gigantic statue has toppled over with no likely cause except the passage of time.

Unless everyone on that island was living in this abject ruin before he came along, this guy must have an aura that causes advanced decay. He used computer technology to simulate a radiation leak that cleared the island of people... so given the far-flung location and the "humble" looks of the place, we can assume they weren't wired for that shit in the 80s/90s. So in maybe ten or so years all the windows broke and everything fell over.

(Plus, really great to store tons of high-tech mainframes and shit where they'll get continually rained on as things leak.)

Did you see how he treated his girlfriend? He probably smashed out the windows for fun.


6.) Bond loses.

I don't know if there's ever been a Bond film where the villain totally 100% wins in every aspect of his plot, but now Skyfall is that film.

Villain: Ex-Agent who wants to kill M.

Goal: Kill M.

Plan: Trick Bond so he can kill M.

Secondary plan: Die because life sucks.

And...? The ending wasn't exactly a happy one, but it took us to the beginning of Bond as we know him from the first films. It was a good ending.

(Nevermind the fact he could've flown into England and shot her in the street at any time, ever.)

How? How does one travel to London and simply shoot the head of MI6 in the street?


So what happens? He tricks Bond, he tricks everyone, he fails a few times only due to being a bad shot, and in the end M is dead because one of the men he hired succeeded in killing her.

...

Also, the villain dies right after attempting to kill himself. Way to give the man every single thing he asks for, James.

But before M dies. He wanted to kill himself and M at the same time. He failed, so that's something.

And finally, who's going to stop those YouTube videos exposing undercover agents every week? They're either automated or done by unknown henchmen since it's clear the villain wasn't just sitting at home in his underoos keying everything in.

Good point. But I'd bet that it was an empty threat to expose M. Though that is something I hadn't thought of, good spot!


But hey...

At least the film looked pretty.


If you loved the film, great! Love it! More power to you, and I'm glad. However, that doesn't make script/plot flaws disappear. :)

Well, imagined script/plot flaws, anyway. But I just made those disappear, so now it's all good! :)

CHWolf
03-22-2013, 08:22 PM
I'm really glad you enjoyed it. I'm not one to say people can't like what they like. It's all just about working out details, for me. Not saying people can't enjoy, just thinking on the issues, etc. with it.

He has no friends, family, nor neighbours.

One possible problem with that, though, is how Bond is *immediately* met by someone he knows upon returning home. The caretaker of the estate, who is a friend of the family.

We can presume he also knew local kids during childhood, has aunts and uncles even if he's never met them... and so on.

Plus if everyone out there knows him as James Bond, you can most likely look up his *current* info in the phone book - much less online.

I dunno, it just hangs together a little odd.


It didn't deserve to win because Adele sang it differently to everything you can hear on her album?

I've heard maybe two of her songs on the radio, and I was expecting something like "IT'S FUCKIN' JAMES BOOOOOOONNNNNNNNDDDDD!!!!" (in a manner of speaking... heh.)

It struck me a bit like having Stephen Tyler without the "Yeeeeeeaaaaooooooaaaaa".



Explain the stereotyping?

Stereotype: "Gay men want to screw any man they can get their hands on."
And: "Gay men don't care if you're into it, pal!"

Sure, the type of intimidation he uses on Bond has been done to a million female characters onscreen, but then when you turn it around it starts to seem at least a BIT like buying into that notion.

Stereotype: "Gay guys are like 'boop' and 'tada' and 'bing' and 'tralala'!"

Actual quotes from the film - Boop, Bing, etc.

Stereotype: "Gay guys have mother issues."

He loves M, he wants to kill M, he wants to die with M, he feels betrayed by M, oh god he's so conflicted about his M(ommy).

Stereotype: "Gay guys hate women."

Obvious, but also note he's surrounded exclusively by men for the entirity of the film - and the only two female characters he interacts with get shot to death by him or by proxy.

Stereotype: "Gay guys are stylish fops who are all like 'you made me break a nail, bitch'."

He's a stylish fop, and as you noted I like to think that comes from the fact he's from a different era... but still, the fact remains that he's played as one. He's slick, dressed to the nines, and during the climax he arrives fashionably late with music blasting. He even remarks on how difficult Bond is making everything in the climax, because oh girl you don't even understand.

Bond's remark "He always has to make an entrance"... he doesn't know the guy at all, and in my personal opinion the quote was pretty much "THEY always have to make an entrance".

His elevator arrival even mimics Dr. Frankenfurter's elevator entrance from the Rocky Horror Picture Show -- all that was missing was the shoe-tap.

I know I'm looking too far into it, but I kind of got on a roll there. :)



I'm convinced you've never watched a Bond film. Seriously.

What's weird is in other Bond films we can see James struggling to save the love interest or being torn up about her death... we can see any number of actions and personality traits opposite of Skyfall.

Not only that, but as I remarked earlier I think this was the most basic and unintriguing Villain plot. No taking over the world, no starting a war, just killing off a single... A SINGLE... person.

If you think that all comes from not watching a single Bond film, you've never watched a single Bond film. XD

Heh.


Maybe. Maybe he bought it. Why not?

It's a bit flashy for "real world football hooligan Bond".

^ That's an actual reason.



And...? The ending wasn't exactly a happy one, but it took us to the beginning of Bond as we know him from the first films. It was a good ending.

I guess I'm just saying that if you look at any other franchise... Harry Potter, Spider-Man, Die Hard, Lethal Weapon, whatever, it's rare for you to find an example where the hero absolutely 100% lost in all respects.

Sure, Gwen Stacy may die - but I doubt the villain will ALSO trick Spidey into doing it all himself, AND get killed seconds after attempting suicide.

It just read, to me, like a huge reeking failure.

That may be edgy and dark and gritty and realistic - but in a James Bond film, where he immediately taunts the dying villain AS IF HE WON... it struck me more as an oversight.

Like nobody sat there and thought: "Well wait, isn't this entire film showcasing Bond's failure?"



How? How does one travel to London and simply shoot the head of MI6 in the street?

Same way yooouuu...

Have a hard drive stolen that contains all the information on every undercover agent MI6 has in order to post it anonymously online in order to get James Bond to go to China so he can kill your guy and meet your girl and kill your other guys and come to you on an island but radio for help so that you get picked up and placed in an underground facility that you yourself forced MI6 into by blowing up their HQ somehow after hacking their system somehow to decrypt the aforementioned hard drive after which you have your pre-programmed laptop computer overtake their security systems in total in order to open every door in the place so you can overtake and kill two armed guards and escape into the tunnels where you meet a guy and become a cop and blow up a wall and have a train come through the hole onto Bond while you climb a ladder so you can get to a hearing with your goons and shoot M in the back of the head...

*whew*

Or, you know, use your computer skills to create a false identity... travel there and shoot her when she's at the market.

Maybe wear a mustache.

Bond villain plots are usually over-the-top-crazy because the goal is something like... "Explode the Earth". It requires incredible secrecy, convoluted plots, lots of tech, lots of henchmen, etc. They carried over all the usual Bond Franchise complexity, BUT they forgot that the goal could have easily been accomplished by digitally re-routing M's next plane ride into a cliff.



But before M dies. He wanted to kill himself and M at the same time. He failed, so that's something.

True, it wasn't in unison. There's that.



Well, imagined script/plot flaws, anyway. But I just made those disappear, so now it's all good! :)

>:V Muahahaha.

Bishop
03-22-2013, 09:31 PM
Funny thing is, Skyfall (and the other Craig Bond movies) is probably the most straight-up 'real world' take on the character and is far closer to the way Fleming wrote Bond than previous Bond films. Apply your critiquing skills to Moonraker and Octopussy and I think Skyfall would look like a masterpiece in comparison.

CHWolf
03-22-2013, 09:34 PM
Yeah, I wouldn't be noticing all this stuff it not for the fact Skyfall is/was touted as "THE ULTIMATE BEST BOND MOVE EVER" and whatnot.

Some of my favorite films are fucked up and meaningless, but they're not passed off as serious works of genius, etc.

Moonrider
03-23-2013, 02:39 AM
Skyfall was an attempt to re-establish the James Bond character to a much modern take of the earliest run of the franchise. Killing M, introducing a new Moneypenny, bringing in a male replacement M, quirky villain, they basically got rid of all the concept surrounding the Pierce Brosnan era of James Bond in one sweep. I wouldn't say that it's the ultimate best bond movie ever though it wouldn't be that much of a stretch, but it was entertaining enough for me to overlook the flaws, Especially since I knew that the James Bond franchise was built upon silly things like weaponized bowler hats and crocodile submarines anyway.

Justice41
03-23-2013, 02:51 AM
as long as they keep that kissy faced guy as bond I can't take anything he does serious.

CHWolf
03-23-2013, 02:53 AM
Weird to attempt a whitewash and include the Aston Martin with ejector seat and gun headlights...

I'M JUST SAYING!!

XD

Moonrider
03-23-2013, 10:53 AM
They're only 'whitewashing' (as you would call it) the '90s era James Bond to go back to the older Sean Connery materials. The Aston Martin was a way to bring nostalgia to the audience, since that's THE James Bond car from that era.

CHWolf
03-23-2013, 04:58 PM
Ah, I see what you mean, now. I took that to mean Brosnan and prior. So yeah, I see that now.