Is Pierce Brosnan really all that bad ??

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  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 17,878
    I think Pierce Brosnan is a little like Nicholas Cage.

    1) He's always Pierce Brosnan.
    2) In the right role, he works, however not all roles are the right ones for Pierce.

    The real question therefore is: was Bond the right role for Brosnan?


    To be fair, I can't answer my own question, so I'll cowardly bypass it by throwing in another question. Did Bond benefit from Brosnan? In that sense, I'd say yes. Audiences embraced him and despite often poor material thrown at him, many critics and fans responded favourably to Brosnan's work. So did I for that matter. I started having doubts around TWINE, when the 'painfaces' and overacting seemed too abundant for comfort, but DAD changed my beliefs once more. While Bond seemed lost in cartoon land, Brosnan kept his cool. It thought it nothing less than brave that while he himself much preferred a more down-to-earth and grittier film, he still gave it the best he could.

    Furthermore, Brosnan brought a few nice things to the role. The way he walks for example. Some folks hate that, but I don't. The voice... meh. It's unlike Connery's or Craig's, I know, but I fail to have serious issues with it. The line delivery... I don't know. I don't think it's as unacceptable as many people nowadays say it is - or was.

    What bugs me is that some people project their annoyances with the four films onto Brosnan as if he decided to go CGI in DAD, to invite Denise Richards to TWINE and to keep David Arnold. Any educated dislike of Brosnan is fine with me as long as it's not irrational.

    This brings me to another question, however. As long as Brosnan was Bond, I was totally fine with him. Then came Craig and suddenly I realised Craig was the best thing since Dalton. (I'm merely stating my personal opinion here, folks.) I wonder, however, if it's really fair to say that Brosnan was a weaker Bond because he wasn't Daniel Craig? Can I now withdraw my own praises for Brosnan from before 2005, now that I've seen CR? Feels a bit like cheating, doesn't it?

    I have come to accept two things. The first is that I'm much more of a Bond apologetic than the average fan. I can sense certain flaws in Brosnan's acting but I've gotten so much pleasure out of his Bond work, it's hard for me not to forgive them. The second is that all but one Bond are subject to our heated debates. Lazenby, Moore, Dalton, Brosnan and Craig all find loyal fans and fierce adversaries in our community. Connery does so to a much lesser degree. He's mostly accepted, fairly unanimously in fact, as the best Bond ever. My point is that Brosnan's fate is hardly different from the other guys. He will never be loved by all, but neither will he be hated by all.

    As an actor outside the grip of 007, Brosnan has done well IMO. I've seen him in a few non-Bond films, yet like I said before, he's almost always Pierce Brosnan in my book. By that I mean that he's not exactly the most versatile actor around but give him a part that fits his abilities, and he'll get the job done. The Ghost Writer is a good example of that if you ask me.
  • edited August 2011 Posts: 1,308
    Dimi, it is always a pleasure to read your extended posts...no homo ;-)

    And was Brozza that bad? I think he gets a little more criticism than he deserves around here. When I first ever joined back in the KTBEU days, the one thing I was most shocked about was the large amounts of disdain towards Pierce. I had generally thought, before I joined, that everyone thought Brosnan was second to Sean Connery and had many fans. However, it seems that the people who like Brosnan on these forums are looked over as 'those Brosnan fans who know no better'.

    I think Brosnan missed a huge opportunity in GoldenEye; the film around him was phenomenal, but I found him as the weakest link. He is constantly upstaged by Robbie Coltrane's Valentien, Famke Janssen's Xenia and especially Sean Bean's 006 (emphasis added). In my most recent viewing of GoldenEye, I found myself often wondering how Sean Bean would've been as Bond.

    But it was different in Tomorrow Never Dies for me. Brosnan is more smug here, and I believe that his performance was more effective. He has some great scenes in TND as well as I think the whole Dr. Kaufman scene was Brosnan's best scene as 007. For once, he is the star of the scene.

    His performance in The World Is Not Enough is a mixed bag for me. I love the line "I never miss," he pulls that one out perfectly. But yes, there is for sure some melodrama such as the scene with Brozza accusing Elektra of maliciousness. ("Knew about my shuuuulder, knew exactly where to huuuuuurt me...") He's good, but then he isn't as good and then he's better etc.

    Die Another Day is once again mixed. He has undeniably gotten very comfortable in the role by now and has some good moments; the pre-titles sequence he does very well. But in some scenes he comes across as some slimy playboy who constantly makes puns about his boners. This is for sure the scripts fault too, but some of the way he delivers his lines make them even more painful. ("I have been known to keep my *tip* up.") Yikes.

    Yes, Brosnan does have his faults, but to call him a bad actor and a failure as 007 is an overreaction.
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 It was this or the priesthood.
    edited August 2011 Posts: 28,231
    Your view is quite well analyzed @Dimi, and you are not wrong on that front. While Brosnan's Bond films don't have that appeal and classic reputation of the 60s Bonds or the sharpness of CR, they are always fun to watch and very enjoyable. Brosnan gets quite a lot hauled on him, as you've said. It's like he was expected to be another Connery. At least he made Bond his own and didn't carbon copy anyone. We should instead be proud of him for pulling through some bad scripts in the end of his Bond career.

  • Furthermore, Brosnan brought a few nice things to the role. The way he walks for example. Some folks hate that, but I don't. The voice... meh. It's unlike Connery's or Craig's, I know, but I fail to have serious issues with it. The line delivery... I don't know. I don't think it's as unacceptable as many people nowadays say it is - or was.

    What bugs me is that some people project their annoyances with the four films onto Brosnan as if he decided to go CGI in DAD, to invite Denise Richards to TWINE and to keep David Arnold. Any educated dislike of Brosnan is fine with me as long as it's not irrational.

    This brings me to another question, however. As long as Brosnan was Bond, I was totally fine with him. Then came Craig and suddenly I realised Craig was the best thing since Dalton. (I'm merely stating my personal opinion here, folks.) I wonder, however, if it's really fair to say that Brosnan was a weaker Bond because he wasn't Daniel Craig? Can I now withdraw my own praises for Brosnan from before 2005, now that I've seen CR? Feels a bit like cheating, doesn't it?
    Dimi,

    For me it's not that Brosnan was bad, it's just that he ranged from adequate to good. He had the charm, the looks, and the charisma and he certainly connected with the audiences. But while he's his own man there wasn't a strong sense of identity to his Bond. Like I said before he seemed to either give the most obvious line readings or to over-act which led me to feel like he was playing at being Bond instead of being Bond - a problem that admittedly lessened as he made more films.

    While his films have problems they aren't his. But I don't think that Brosnan was waiting and willing to give a great Bond performance when the right film came along but holding out until then. You do the best you can do and always try your hardest. Craig makes some very interesting choices which make his Bond more memorable. I think if you put Craig in GE and Brosnan in CR you would have seen VERY different characterizations of Bond.

    Craig really opened my eyes to the fact that a good actor can take a character like Bond and make him fresh and interesting even after 50 years and multiple other actors playing him. That doesn't mean that it should impact my opinion of Brosnan. I'll admit that I've said that seeing CR led to a "retroactive diminishment" of Brosnan's performance in my opinion, but I think it just clarified in my mind the problems that I already had with Brosnan. And as I said, I do really like Brosnan, it's just that he wasn't the strongest actor in the role.

    Just out of curiosity, what is it about Brosnan's walk that people like or don't like? I've never really noticed it. I did notice that both Connery and Craig have a "panther-like prowl" at times, and in CR Craig's posture was such that I totally believed he was a soldier.

  • Posts: 5,634
    from an American's perspective one thing I never understood was

    James Bond 007 is supposed to be an ENGLISH operative working for the British Government right, yet ever since the franchise saw the light of day we've gone along with Scottish, Australian, Welsh and Irish (ok, actors) bonds, was some sort of antics going on somewhere down the line

    you wonder one day when Craig leaves we could see a Hungarian or Saint Kitts and Nevis bond

    in all seriousness, take away the actors and concentrate on the character

    (some) people have stated that Brosnan was the least intimidating of all the bond types and would have trouble fighting off a twelve year old boy never mind evil types after world domination or whatever

    won't say that, he seemed sturdy enough in his first few adventures, but there were too many absurdities during his time, I know Bond movies are to be taken with a pinch of salt but there were times when I thought 'huh'

    he wasn't my favorite one for sure, he wanted to do another after Die another Day but he was turned down, they didn't feel he was the right choice anymore, Brosnan was almost 50 at the time too, maybe four features was enough









  • Posts: 1,054
    Moore is English.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 17,878
    As is Craig.
  • edited August 2011 Posts: 1,308
    http://screenmusings.org/AViewToAKill/pages/AVtaK_225.htm
    "I'm English!"

    I personally think that the actor portraying Bond does not have to be English. In the film, he must be an English spy, but as long as the actor can pull off the accent and mannerisms correctly, it doesn't make a difference to me....yes even if the actor was...gulp...American!!!!!!!

    Now, being an American myself I never really noticed Brosnan's 'American' accent slip through; does anyone have specific lines that Brozza said that sounded American?

    Besides 'Barnd. James Barnd." ;-)
  • royale65royale65 Caustic misanthrope reporting for duty.
    Posts: 4,143
    like he was playing at being Bond instead of being Bond - a problem that admittedly lessened as he made more films.

    .

    That's maybe why I like him so much.

    Oh, by the way, Brosnan moves, walks, very well. Not Connery or Lazenby, but well. In DAD, when Bond discovers Moon is Graves, Graves has a wonderful line, about swaggering, unjustified, I think he calls it. But if you'd been through what Bond has, I expect you would be swaggering!

  • Posts: 5,766
    does anyone have specific lines that Brozza said that sounded American?
    I can´t think of any specific lines, but his pronunciation sounds definitely less British than all the other Bonds in direct comparison. I didn´t notice it for long years, so I can´t really complain, but especially since Craig came and didn´t let one syllable flow into the next I couldn´t help but notice that Brosnan kind of sticks out in this regard.
    I don´t know if Bond has to have the most British of all accents, since his usual cover is being a business man at home around the world. But then, that cover is rather clichee, so why not have a clicheed British pronunciation?

  • Posts: 11,169
    There were a few lines where his twang did creep in. Off the top of my head:

    -"What!" (GE, Bond to Natalya in the train)
    -His pronounciation of "chopper" sounds a bit American too.
    -"And whatdayou think"? (Bond to M in DAD)
    -Nat yet (Bond to Jinx as they are about to escape the dying plane)

    I don't think his twang is that bad though. Don't forget Brosnan isn't ACTUALLY American, he just lived in the US for a fair while. Laz spoke with a bit of an accent too. For christ sake he was probably dubbed because he couldn't do a full-on English voice.
  • 00Hero00Hero Banned
    edited July 2013 Posts: 121
    Imo theres nothing wrong with Broznan or his accent so I think its unfair of us to compare him to Craig aka flemings Bond. He moves well walks well runs well etc does his best and what more could us chaps want.
  • Posts: 4,622
    Brozzer sighs and wheezes too much. The pain face is annoying too.
    He does not move well. He doesn't quite lumber like Rog did, but like Rog, he's not terribly athletic.
    Connery and Laz on the other hand were pure athletes. Their cv's back that up. Both had impressive physical credentials and it showed in the way they moved and fought.
    Craig also has an athletic gait.
    Broz did have his moments. I think he was at his best in DAD actually. He got better in the role as he went along I think, even if GE might have been the best film he was in.
    Ideally I don't think he was great casting, but he was an established charismatic TV star, much like Rog was, and in both cases that seemed to translate into good box-office.
    If the Connery magic is ever to be recaptured, I think Bond has to be re-cast as a young actor again, age 31 max, the same age as Connery was when DN started shooting.
    Then you are more likely to get the desired physicality.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 16,044
    Brosnan is my second favourite Bond after Tim. YES, Connery was magic, but I still prefer Pierce.
    Back in '82 I was watching this silly little American show called Remington Steele and the FIRST thought I had was please Rog, retire & give it to THIS guy! Imagine how thrilled I was in 1995 to not only GET A BOND MOVIE AGAIN FINALLY, but to have my personal earlier pick as the actor! And DAMN the dude could handle a fight scene ( see: end of GE)!!!!
    Hey, I like all the actors, ALL OF THEM, but Brosnan I like better than most.

    At his core, he's felt a real pain in life that most of the other actors never had to endure. I see that edge in his portrayal of Bond. Even in his sillier moments.
  • Posts: 5,634
    Today was Independence Day wasn't it ? Not even a mention ?

    Not enough american participants maybe, but on the Brosnan issue, and not to be too harsh, but I always maintain that the Irishman felt so far detached from the Fleming character at times. Currently about fifth or sixth favorite Bond actor, down there with George Lazenby, and feel I must apologize to any Brosnan enthusiasts, but there's no sense in lying. Bottom line is, you watch any Brosnan release, and does it feel like you're watching a true representation of the James Bond chatacter ? Have to admit, more often than not, No. Sure he had some redeeming qualities, and every now again, put in a performance, but in the simplest terms, is, and will always be, light years away from the iconic names such as Sean Connery or Tim Dalton. Even Roger Moore come to think of it. It's not an attack on the name in question, I appreciate Pierce Brosnan is a fine individual and actor of caliber (in other work), but he never worked out in the role of James Bond for me. There's no sense in lying on this
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 16,044
    Today was Independence Day wasn't it ?

    "Good morning. [turns on mic] Good morning. In less than an hour, aircraft from here will join others from around the world, and you will be launching the largest aerial battle in the history of mankind. Mankind. That word should have new meaning for all of us today. We can't be consumed by our petty differences anymore. We will be united in our common interests. Perhaps it's fate that today is the Fourth of July, and you will once again be fighting for our freedom. Not from tyranny, oppression, or persecution… but from annihilation. We're fighting for our right to live. To exist. And should we win the day, the Fourth of July will no longer be known as an American holiday, but as the day when the world declared in one voice: We will not go quietly into the night! We will not vanish without a fight! We're going to live on! We're going to survive! Today we celebrate our Independence Day!"
  • Posts: 5,634
    Got news for you - Independence Day is officially over now

    Wasn't as eventful as last year but still had its moments. Can't believe another year has passed by. Hope everyone had a good time in any event. Will endeavor to participate again sometime soon

  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 16,044
    Got news for you - Independence Day is officially over now
    My how time flies.
    Bur Pierce still rocks as Bond for many...

  • edited July 2013 Posts: 4,622
    chrisisall wrote:
    Today was Independence Day wasn't it ?

    "Good morning. [turns on mic] Good morning. In less than an hour, aircraft from here will join others from around the world, and you will be launching the largest aerial battle in the history of mankind. Mankind. That word should have new meaning for all of us today. We can't be consumed by our petty differences anymore. We will be united in our common interests. Perhaps it's fate that today is the Fourth of July, and you will once again be fighting for our freedom. Not from tyranny, oppression, or persecution… but from annihilation. We're fighting for our right to live. To exist. And should we win the day, the Fourth of July will no longer be known as an American holiday, but as the day when the world declared in one voice: We will not go quietly into the night! We will not vanish without a fight! We're going to live on! We're going to survive! Today we celebrate our Independence Day!"


    :-O Have aliens attacked!? Sorry I wasn't paying attention to the news, what with both a football and baseball game on that I wanted to watch.
    Good thing I checked in here, and got the update!
    Back to Broz. Like I said, he did have his moments as Bond. I find all 4 of his movies quite watchable. The climactic fight with Sean Bean in GE was yes very well done, and so were many of his other action scenes, especially the TND pts. He was solid for all of DAD too, I would say. He did some good action work running around with Michelle Yeo, for the TND finale, and even earlier in the film. In fact he was pretty much solid throughout. I think TND and DAD were among his most even performances.
    I didn't find him to be quite as menacing however in close quarter, mano-a-mano stuff, the GE finale being a notable exception.
    To wit, I didn't like the fight with the yacht-hand in GE. It looked staged. I thought the fight with Carver's goons at the CMG party also looked a little staged, and even the TWINE pts fight with the banker and company didn't quite resonate. Again, staged looking. Compare with Connery who excelled in such situation. Sean didn't do as much running around, but he was utterly convincing in the close-quarter stuff, as was Lazenby, and Craig very much so, as well.
    It's this uneveness that frustrates somewhat regarding Broz. Sometimes he was on, sometimes he wasn't quite there, IMHO of course.
  • 4EverBonded4EverBonded Dancing at midnight under the BeBop Moon
    Posts: 11,715
    I love Pierce as Bond;he was great. I had plenty of issues with DAD and some with TWINE, but he wasn't one of them. A very fine Bond for me. I enjoy TND and GE nearly as much as any Bond film. I think I'll head over the Brosnan Appreciation thread now. ;)
  • edited July 2013 Posts: 11,169
    To wit, I didn't like the fight with the yacht-hand in GE. It looked staged. I thought the fight with Carver's goons at the CMG party also looked a little staged, and even the TWINE pts fight with the banker and company didn't quite resonate.

    Personally I felt the yacht fight didn't look that staged at all although I sort of see what you mean about the others (though I do like the CMG party fight).

    In fairness Broz wasn't the only Bond actor who had fight scenes that looked staged.

    A few others:

    -Connery and Hans in YOLT
    -Moore and the goons in TMWTGG (you can see the actors throwing themselves around)
    -Moore on the roof in TSWLM (very clunky fight although the end few moments redeem it)
    -Moore on top of the cable car in MR
    -Moore in AVTAK (TERRIBLE!)
    -Dalton in the Afghanistan airbase in TLD (this is the one weaker fight in the film).
  • Posts: 1,052
    Of course Brosnan wasn't that bad, he was perfectly ok. Has anyone actually heard Brosser slag EON off or is it just paper talk?
  • Posts: 686
    Brosnan had horrible scripts.
  • pachazopachazo Make Your Choice
    Posts: 6,932
    chrisisall wrote:
    At his core, he's felt a real pain in life that most of the other actors never had to endure. I see that edge in his portrayal of Bond.
    Perhaps that is why he is so great in the scene where he finds Paris dead in the hotel room and the subsequent killing of Dr. Kaufman? Maybe he was channeling a very real inner pain?
  • Posts: 48
    Pierce Brosnan wasn't that bad nor so good in Bond role. He seemed to have a confusion of whether to follow Connery or Moore or both. He was slim and handsome but lacked the toughness in physique like Connery or Lazenby. He justified his role as Bond as an alternative to Connery or Moore. Before he attains his originality status the Bond concept was rebooted and he lost.
  • Posts: 11,937
    I like Brosnan, have nothing against him as a person or as Bond. Really feel for the guy at the minute with the tragic loss of his step daughter. In terms of Bond I think they could have made him far grittier or darker for that matter? He was excellent in "The Fourth Protocol".
  • Posts: 28
    As much love as there is for Dalton on here, he didn't set the box office alight. To me Brosnan's Bond was purposely an amalgamation of the 4 who came before him and was a nice balance of them all which helped reignite the box office and he deserves tremendous credit for that.

    Overall he's my 2nd favourite behind Connery and I hated him at first but he was the closest "all rounder" to Sean. Charming and suave enough but still believable action wise, unlike Moore, Dalton and Craig are not charming or suave enough to me and overall Lazenby just wasn't quite as good.
  • Posts: 12,225
    Why does every Bond have to redefine the character?

    Brosnan was a pretty safe choice but I thought he did well. I liked the cool, flashy action hero approach.

    So what if he wasn't drastically different to Connery or Moore and so what if he wasn't the closest to Fleming, he made a great cinematic Bond and without him the series might not be around today.

    He's definitely one of my favourites.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 16,044
    Why does every Bond have to redefine the character?

    Brosnan was a pretty safe choice but I thought he did well. I liked the cool, flashy action hero approach.

    So what if he wasn't drastically different to Connery or Moore and so what if he wasn't the closest to Fleming, he made a great cinematic Bond and without him the series might not be around today.

    He's definitely one of my favourites.
    THANK YOU!!!!

  • Posts: 1,492
    Why does every Bond have to redefine the character?

    Brosnan was a pretty safe choice but I thought he did well. I liked the cool, flashy action hero approach.

    So what if he wasn't drastically different to Connery or Moore and so what if he wasn't the closest to Fleming, he made a great cinematic Bond and without him the series might not be around today.

    He's definitely one of my favourites.

    Because otherwise the character becomes stale and repeditive and the team lazy and complacent.

    Audiences need change
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