Sam Mendes - Appreciation thread

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  • TripAcesTripAces Universal Exports
    Posts: 4,508
    All of this talk makes me want to see SF again, for like the 1000th time. It's such a beautiful film.
  • Jordo007Jordo007 Merseyside
    Posts: 1,768
    If Mendes had just done Skyfall, he'd be one of my favourite directors in the history of the series.

    Such a great film, with so many memorable scenes. It's one of the only Bond films I get just as much enjoyment out of the dialogue and staging than as the action. I love the Q scene and the word association scene (Daniel really shows off his acting range in that one scene alone)

    If Mendes has a minor drawback, the action can look somewhat run of the mill and predictable. Although I thought the pre title sequence for Skyfall was fantastic

    Let's not talk about Spectre...
  • ContrabandContraband Sweden
    Posts: 3,018
    An Evening with Director Sam Mendes: 2.15 hours video interview/talk

    Director Sam Mendes engages in conversation with Director Edgar Wright on Mendes’ career, focusing on his roots in theater, his process working with actors, and his films including American Beauty, Road to Perdition, Skyfall, and 1917.

    https://www.dga.org/Events/2021/May2021/ERSP_AnEveningWithSamMendes_0321.aspx

    https://www.dga.org/Events/2021/May2021/ERSP_AnEveningWithSamMendes_0321.aspx
  • quantumspectrequantumspectre argentina
    Posts: 54
    to me both skyfall and spectre show a dark gothic side that was never truly explored before. so even if those movied never get all the love, i still watch them from time to time.
  • M16_CartM16_Cart Craig fanboy?
    edited November 2021 Posts: 535
    Mendes' directing was one of very few redeeming qualities of Spectre.

    This film is #21 on my ranking even with good directing. Imagine if it had average or subpar directing, it would easily be #25.
  • M16_Cart wrote: »
    Mendes' directing was one of very few redeeming qualities of Spectre.

    This film is #21 on my ranking even with good directing. Imagine if it had average or subpar directing, it would easily be #25.

    100%, could not have put it better myself.

    Personally, I feel that SP has a lot of problems in common with some of the later Moore movies, but unlike John Glen, Mendes has the filmmaking craft to elevate the material somewhat.

  • MalloryMallory Do mosquitoes have friends?
    edited July 2022 Posts: 1,794
    Mendes’ new film Empire of Light has been test screened and seemingly well received.

    Perhaps a more interesting note...



    No Newman. Make it his first non-Newman scores film since “Away We Go” in 2009, and that didnt have a score as such. I think all of his other films have been Newman scored.

    Newman is currently working on “Wonder” for more Bond directing alumni, Marc Foster. So could be a scheduling issue.
  • Posts: 4,382
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    I rewatched 1917 and it is a tremendous film - probably Sam Mendes' best. This is truly such an experiential and engrossing film that really puts you alongside the characters. I enjoyed Dunkirk, but there was always something chilly and mechanical about the character work. The difference between Mendes and Nolan is that the latter is preoccupied with the 'epic.' Meanwhile, Mendes is more insightful and poetic. By narrowing the perspective of the film to a few characters, Mendes builds a true emotional connection. In addition, Mendes is also able to make an effective, mostly silent action film. There is a feeling from the opening frame that Mendes is strapping you on a rollercoaster and he is setting you rapidly down a track. This is accomplished in 1917 through the impression of a continuous take, which I found to be truly immersive and rarely distracting. There is meticulous attention to detail here; Roger Deakins' camerawork proving to be elegant and graceful. Thankfully the film never succumbs to 'shaky cam' grittiness; nonetheless, we share in the characters' anxiety.

    Thematically, the 'war is hell' adage is a little trite. However, I cannot think of a better recent film which has so potently articulated this point. There really is no nobility in this fight, the men are not conventionally heroic or brave. These are desperate, scared and overwhelmed young men trying their best to survive. One can hardly fault them for being afraid. If anything, the tension they feel makes the characters more relatable. Dean-Charles Chapman was cheated out of an Oscar nomination and George Mackay provides a really haunting performance. You cannot help relating to his struggle, and wishing him through this ordeal.

    If they go with a younger actor for Bond 26, I could see them adopting the model used in 1917's action sequences to accentuate 007's vulnerability. You could make an argument based on 1917 that Mendes is the man for the reboot. Personally, I think all Craig-era directors should not be considered, but the work by Sam Mendes in this film provides food for thought.......

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  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 6,838
    A trailer was just released for his new film EMPIRE OF LIGHT.



    This is definitely on my must see list.

    @Pierce2Daniel I don’t think we’ll see Mendes return to Bond. I think he did everything he wanted to do with Bond with the two films he made. But he’s my favorite director as far as the Craig era goes, so I would welcome him returning should it happen.
  • Posts: 1,268
    I have no idea what this film is about going from the trailer but I'm really digging it. It also seems to have been shot around Margate which is a location I'm familiar with having worked there on film/music video shoots in the past. Beautiful location, very photogenic.

    Anyway, I'm a fan of Mendes. I think it's unfortunate that he tends to get a bit of fan hate (or let's say criticism) because of SP. In a lesser director's hands it could have been a mess. With a solid script and enough preparation he's a capable director who can handle character effectively. Should Bond 26 be in that position I'd be happy for him to return and direct another Bond film.
  • MaxCasinoMaxCasino United States
    Posts: 3,036
    007HallY wrote: »
    I have no idea what this film is about going from the trailer but I'm really digging it. It also seems to have been shot around Margate which is a location I'm familiar with having worked there on film/music video shoots in the past. Beautiful location, very photogenic.

    Anyway, I'm a fan of Mendes. I think it's unfortunate that he tends to get a bit of fan hate (or let's say criticism) because of SP. In a lesser director's hands it could have been a mess. With a solid script and enough preparation he's a capable director who can handle character effectively. Should Bond 26 be in that position I'd be happy for him to return and direct another Bond film.

    https://www.indiewire.com/2020/03/sam-mendes-james-bond-not-healthy-work-1202216364/

    I don’t think he’ll be back, but I wouldn’t mind if he did.
  • NickTwentyTwoNickTwentyTwo Vancouver, BC, Canada
    edited August 2022 Posts: 7,322
    This is stupid, but sometimes I like to read those articles as if I just found out Craig was cast as Bond back in 2005-2006 (or like, send these articles back in time to myself then).

    "Holy crap, Sam Mendes directed a Bond film called Skyfall, and it won an Oscar??" lol

    Anyways, it makes a lot of sense when he says "If I win I survive, if I lose I'm pilloried, there is no victory". Fans, even on this board, have such wildly different tastes and ideas of what makes a good Bond film / a Bond film they like, it's impossible to please even a strong majority of Bond fans, probably...
  • Posts: 1,268
    MaxCasino wrote: »
    007HallY wrote: »
    I have no idea what this film is about going from the trailer but I'm really digging it. It also seems to have been shot around Margate which is a location I'm familiar with having worked there on film/music video shoots in the past. Beautiful location, very photogenic.

    Anyway, I'm a fan of Mendes. I think it's unfortunate that he tends to get a bit of fan hate (or let's say criticism) because of SP. In a lesser director's hands it could have been a mess. With a solid script and enough preparation he's a capable director who can handle character effectively. Should Bond 26 be in that position I'd be happy for him to return and direct another Bond film.

    https://www.indiewire.com/2020/03/sam-mendes-james-bond-not-healthy-work-1202216364/

    I don’t think he’ll be back, but I wouldn’t mind if he did.

    Hmm, fair enough. Shame, SF really was the highlight of the Craig era for me. I honestly don't think many directors would have been able to exactly shine given the circumstances around SP.
  • MaxCasinoMaxCasino United States
    Posts: 3,036
    007HallY wrote: »
    I have no idea what this film is about going from the trailer but I'm really digging it. It also seems to have been shot around Margate which is a location I'm familiar with having worked there on film/music video shoots in the past. Beautiful location, very photogenic.

    Anyway, I'm a fan of Mendes. I think it's unfortunate that he tends to get a bit of fan hate (or let's say criticism) because of SP. In a lesser director's hands it could have been a mess. With a solid script and enough preparation he's a capable director who can handle character effectively. Should Bond 26 be in that position I'd be happy for him to return and direct another Bond film.

    I still like Sam Mendes. American Beauty is still one of my favorite movies, despite what you might think about Kevin Spacey. As for Bond, I could go either way for his return. He was a good director for them both, and he showed he was a fan without overdoing his fanboyness.
  • VenutiusVenutius Yorkshire
    Posts: 1,852
    Honestly think that Mendes had done what he wanted to do with SF and his heart wasn't really in SP - or if it was, not enough to get it fully over the line. Didn't he basically agree to do Bond because he liked what Craig had done with it? Difficult to see his motivation for a third, tbh.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 6,838
    Yeah, part of why he got into SF was because he was already friends with Craig going way back to ROAD TO PERDITION.

    If Mendes were to return to Bond, he’d likely want to be assured with a better script than SP.
  • TripAcesTripAces Universal Exports
    Posts: 4,508
    This looks fantastic. And notice, if you will, that Mendes has jettisoned long-time music collaborator Thomas Newman for....wait for it...wait for it...

  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 6,838
    Funny thing is that Thomas Newman has just scored Marc Forster’s latest film coming out this fall.
  • TripAcesTripAces Universal Exports
    Posts: 4,508
    Funny thing is that Thomas Newman has just scored Marc Forster’s latest film coming out this fall.

    That is very interesting.
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 38,239
    One of my most anticipated films for the rest of the year. Can't wait to get a chance to see it, it looks magical.
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    Sam Mendes' new film is being mauled by the critics. Which is a shame. Even if it did look like a blatant piece of Oscar bait. Which naturally makes it unattractive as it comes across as desperate. I think it is time Mendes puts aside his attempts to be an Academy darling and move into genre fare. It would be great to see him tackle an A24 horror film or direct a HBO mini-series. Alternatively he can do what Nolan and Villeneuve do and stay in the blockbuster arena. I think Skyfall and 1917 demonstrated how adept he was in that aren.

    As I posted earlier, I am unsure if any Craig-era director (including Martin Campbell) should come back for the next reboot. This especially applies to Mendes - who I see as 'Daniel Craig's Bond director.' However, if they go with a younger actor for Bond 26, I could see them adopting the model used in 1917's action sequences to accentuate 007's vulnerability. You could make an argument based on 1917 that Mendes is the man for the reboot. Maybe his Empire of Light leading man Michael Ward could be a good 007?
  • MalloryMallory Do mosquitoes have friends?
    Posts: 1,794
    @Pierce2Daniel Ouch! From reading the reviews the common consensus is that whilst technically great and with great performances, the script is borderline awful. Mendes wrote it on his own, looks like he needed, as with 1917, a Krysty Wilson-Cairns to straighten it all out and elevate it.
  • Posts: 1,268
    So essentially good direction, nice visuals, solid performances, but bad script...

    Sounds a bit like SP.
  • SecretAgentMan⁰⁰⁷SecretAgentMan⁰⁰⁷ Lagos, Nigeria
    Posts: 550
    Nice to see them working together.
  • Posts: 4,382
    Anyone want Sam Mendes back for Bond 26?

    Just watched Empire of Light and it was a disappointment. There are plenty of themes but few coherent ideas linking them. Olivia Colman delivers a stirring performance, but this is not her most affecting screen work. Her struggle with mental illness is the most compelling aspect of the story and I wish the film had committed to being a proper character study. However, it awkwardly introduces trite racial politics into the mix. Whilst well intentioned the two ideas do not mix well and neither plot gets the handled adequately as a result. Subsequently the relationship between the two leads struggles to convince as anything more than a plot device The problem is the hollow screenplay which is too twee, devoid of spontaneity and prone to hitting the nail on the head (much like the movie’s title). There isn’t really much insight to be gleaned on the subjects of mental illness, racial politics, middle age or work. This was a first draft that needed rewriting. However, the score is beautiful and Roger Deakins' cinematography is outstanding (especially one scene on the roof of the cinema)....

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  • MaxCasinoMaxCasino United States
    edited January 10 Posts: 3,036
    There are better or worse choices for directors. I really don’t think Cary will be coming back, given his problems with sexual harassment. Marc Forster shouldn’t be allowed back as well. Mendes would need more passion on his part. While cutting back on the MI6 regulars. Maybe introducing other Bond characters from the books, May maybe.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 6,838
    Depends on what appeals to Mendes. If he’s enthusiastic about kickstarting a new Bond like Campbell was, I wouldn’t be against him. Just please do not have Lee Smith in the editing bay. He did great harm with the flow of SPECTRE.
  • DenbighDenbigh UK
    Posts: 5,377
    I actually really loved Empire Of Light.
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