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@Matt007, couldn't possibly disagree with you more.
I don't think Bond is talked to like a "prick," or anything of the kind in the film. At the very least, there is some bitterness between he and MI6, as he left when he was needed and clearly it's held against him. But I think the movie goes out of its way to show Mallory in particular in a negative light, as he was the one that botched things, not Bond. And even the person who had the most conflict with Bond, Nomi, ends the movie respecting the man so much she gives back his 00 number.
One of the whole points of the movie was to show the legacy this Bond has, and the impact he's had on the people in his world. He has a reputation that is very positive, across the board. Felix tracks him down because he knows he's the only man for the job, those at MI6 are in awe of him when he returns because he casts such a long shadow, Mallory knows he needs him more than he'd ever be able to admit, and how Moneypenny and Q feel doesn't need to even be addressed, as their adoration for Bond is evident.
Nomi is really the only one Bond has to struggle to convince, as she starts off thinking he is bitter and cares about being "replaced," but over time the man proves her wrong by accepting her and respecting what she brings to the table. When she knows she's wrong about Bond, she amends it and gives him the respect he's given to her. Even Logan Ash, a guy who is trying to kill Bond in order to help Safin out, is full of nothing but respect and admiration for this guy even as they are engaged in a battle together. The criminal underworld knows and fears Bond, because he has a legacy of getting the job done, no matter what. If anything, NTTD cements that Bond has an undying reputation, and he leaves behind a legacy that nobody will forget, whether they were enemy or ally. And that says a lot about him.
That is just silly, sorry. Bond doesn't die for "no reason" or because Marvel did it (or whoever). Bond dying, specifically this Bond, fits for me, and is fitting for his journey as a character. The ground work has been laid across this entire era for Bond to die, as we've seen how harsh the spy world is. As he said in CR, "00s have a very short life expectancy." We see Bond lose so many people, and it becomes less and less ridiculous to imagine him dying too. I went into the movie wondering if they'd kill him off, because it felt like it would be a natural conclusion given the tone of these movies. I wouldn't ponder something like that if I didn't have a reason to suspect it, going only by what the movies have provided me with.
I also find a Fleming quality about Bond dying. In the books Bond openly admits that he doesn't think he'll survive to the 00 retirement age, and lives his life sparing no expense because to him, death is just down the road. He's a man that enjoys his life as much as he can, and doesn't want any money left in his bank account when the time comes, because he knows how swiftly death can arrive. He could always be one or two "ugly jobs" as he calls it away from death's door, and doesn't hide that fact. He's also very motivated by his duty, as Craig's Bond is, and I have been reminded of Moonraker quite a lot since seeing NTTD. At the end of that book, Bond is fully prepared to kill himself to stop Drax's plot, because lives are on the line and it's his job to protect them.
I see no difference between that and what Craig's Bond does at the end of NTTD. He knows that there is a small window for them to act, and if they don't bomb the island immediately there's a chance the people Safin have coming can take some of the virus and bring it out into the world to carry out the scheme. Bond knows his mission, and does whatever he needs to to complete it, as it's his job. He dies knowing that millions have been saved, and instead of being angry or bitter or resentful about it, he accepts his end like the man he is, knowing that he did what he needed to do. NTTD really drove home just how sentimental he is, much like Fleming's original. He's cold on the outside, but on the inside he loves people and will do what it takes to get the job done, as duty runs through his blood.
People are getting too into their feelings about this whole thing, specifically about Bond dying. Just because Bond dies, people write off the entire movie, and it's just silly and sometimes childish. You have to look at what his death means in context of the movie, as I think his death is a respectful way of showing us the kind of brave man he is, worthy of being honored and remembered. He doesn't die with disrespect, or shame, or failure. He does his job, saves the damn world, and accepts death. People act like Bond hasn't signed up for this, or something. He knows what being a 00 means, and that death could come around any corner. You don't take a job like that if you aren't accepting of that fact, but people want to make a big deal about it like EON are pissing on Bond's legacy and his history just by killing him, missing the whole point of what his death means.
If Fleming lived long enough and kept writing the books, I don't find it hard to imagine him killing Bond off too, as he certainly laid the ground work. He wasn't writing a superhero character, after all, but a very tragic man with a dark life, which is reflected in the journey of Craig's Bond. Nostalgia has driven people to only wanting the same old things done with this character, and that is as dull as it gets. I have seen the same variation on this character more times than I care to have, and what they've done with the character this go around by doubling down on him as a character by daring to tell such a story is what has kept me engaged. Bond is worthy of more than just the same rehashed nostalgia bait. And as NTTD's success has proven, audiences are willing to see new things done with the character.
Let me start by saying, I consider myself as one who has a distaste for "woke" culture. Given how vague its use can be, for the purposes of argument regarding this review I'll define woke as "injection of racial or social matters for the sake of equity." I understand this definition isn't what you'll find in a dictionary, but it captures the tone used in the review.
So that said, I really don't see "wokeness" on display in NTTD. The only thing that felt dodgy to me was the race line by Valdo, which is clearly there as means to justify his killing. While I find line to be a bit unnecessary, it's not like it overstepped into any dangerous kind of territory.
The only other thing that felt contrived was that Q was revealed to be gay. Again, I don't think the film really steps into dangerous territory, as it is cleverly brought up through Bond and Moneypenny's bombardment of Q's date night. This was about as soft and natural of an announcement that they could've made it. It's not like Q is seen making out with some dude... Its literally comes down to a choice of words (which very easily could have been reversed to the opposite sex) that is inconsequential to everything else in the story.
I fail to see anywhere else where race or social issues are embedded into the story. I know one fact that is currently pointed to as an identifier of "wokeness" is that Bond's job title is given to a black woman. Where is this fact being touted in the film? It's not. There's nothing of it. Nomi could have very easily been a straight white dude. You wouldn't need to change a single line. Her race and sex literally does not matter to the story. And honestly, Nomi is the one of the most well done "Bond equals" out there, if not the best.
The only other thing that the writer points to is this "emasculation of Bond." Is this because he falls in love and produced a child? If so, what is so effeminate about being father? Pretty sure Craig's daddy Bond is just as lethal as pre-dad Bond and can whoop some critic butt.
The last point I'll make is that the big trigger behind this though is really Bond dying. This concept really has nothing to do with being woke or emasculating the character, though. Rather it is more to do with poking through Bond's invincibility as a character. I think because these sorts of things have been done in other beloved film franchises rather unsuccessfully (ahm, Star Wars), when it came to Bond following this trend, it already was an uphill battle because the pre-existing disdain from those films.
So bottom line is I think calling the film woke is ungrounded. The Bond films have done a great job of avoiding or skirting around political issues and I think NTTD is no different. I challenge anyone who disagrees to make their case, because from what I've read this far, I'm not seeing it. And that's coming from a guy who is admittedly sympathetic to anti-woke sentiment.
I was actually a little worried going into the movie for a while, because all I heard from people in person and online was chatter about it being "SJW," "overly political," "ruining Bond," etc., but I kept my faith and tried to block the negativity out. Because these days everything is political, no matter if you're debating who you voted for or what your favorite goddamn color is.
After seeing the movie I just shook my head in frustration, because all the ranting and raving was BS from the beginning. We're now in a world where the people who originally spoke out about movies getting overly-politicized are now just as annoying and invasive as those they seek to battle. This movie was called a racist, woke Hollyweird fever dream before it came out, and people were acting like Nomi was going to be the new James Bond and Bond himself would take a back seat to make way for her. It was such a crock, a methodically designed crock, and I despise anyone who spread such ridiculous claims.
It's so easy to blame EON for anything people don't like about a Bond film these days, but as in the old days Barbara and Michael and all the rest of the people that bring us these movies simply never get the kind of respect they deserve. Barbara especially has been very vocal about Bond staying the way he always has been in a climate where saying something remotely "controversial" on Twitter six years ago can see you lose your job, and there is added pressure on her to follow the narrative because she's a woman in power. But she always sticks to her guns, and upholds the Bond we know and love. For that, I will always respect her. EON have continued to uphold what Bond is, and always should be, but have also seen that more representation is important, as it is.
The Bond series is often called sexist, but from the beginning we have had strong women and characters of non-white race play a vital role in the films. I think Bond gets an unfair reputation, because people forget just how "progressive" these movies have always been. From the 60s on, Bond has worked with strong women, had fellow agents alongside him of every race imaginable, and no big deal was ever made of it, because it wasn't one. Anyone that treats the series like it's some outdated, racist or sexist franchise has truly lost the plot, and not given the films the credit they deserve for being so trail blazing even at a time when a lot of films weren't being so daring.
I come away from the movie very proud of what EON accomplished, as it is a movie that pushes things in a better direction without any overly-political messaging. Q is gay, but it's not what defines him and it's not made a big deal of. He is what he is, natural as can be, and nobody in the movie cares, because it has no impact on his value as a person or what he brings to the MI6 team. I thought it was a lovely inclusion, innocuous as can be, and if it gives a gay person something to smile about and cling to, all the better.
And Nomi really impressed me, in a way I didn't anticipate. I thought she'd leave me cold, but I really respected how she was used in the film. I enjoyed that Bond had to earn her respect, but I further appreciated that none of their conflict came from the fact that she was a woman taking his number. She just thought he was bitter because the 007 number was his "brand," something he defined himself with. Her being a woman was irrelevant, and they could've just as easily swapped Nomi out with a man and nothing would've changed. The whole point of that character was to show that the world was in safe hands because Nomi was capable and worthy of being at Bond's level, but most importantly, Bond's reaction to her also shows how much he's grown as a man because he very quickly gives her the respect she's earned and has no ill feelings against her for filling his 00 position. The pay-off if Bond dying honorably as 007, because Nomi's respect for him enabled her to give him the admiration he deserved by returning his number to him. He didn't need to be 007, but he earned it. They were a great dynamic to watch on screen.
I don't really have any truck with folks who suggest that "wokeness" a) doesn't exist and b) is actually terrific, and I know it is often a destructive force in academia and other institutions.
That said, I don't think I've ever seen a woke blockbuster (though some may exist), I had confidence that NTTD was not going to be one, and that confidence was well-placed. I have sympathy for folks who had concerns prior to the film's release, but anyone claiming that it's woke having seen it is not playing with a full deck. With regard to Nomi, I feel she was given short shrift, if anything. I don't recall M saying a word to her once she and Bond reached Safin's island!
People are in bubbles, listening to partially accurate reports on how either wokeness or racism is rising, dangerous, and out of control, and perhaps need to recalibrate their sensitivity and look at some of the things they're actually reacting to. There are things to legitimately complain about in both directions, but something like NTTD is just not one of them. Like at all.
(Echoing the complaint about Valdo's racist comment, it annoyed me not because I took it as being anything woke, but because I generally want to like the villains a bit, and that kind of wrecks it for him. It would not have been very fun if Goldfinger had made a racist comment either. It was a bit cheap and certainly unnecessary)
They are toxic people basically, and one should stay apart from them and their influences which includes reviews on sites.
It doesn't mean WOKE culture and CANCEL culture don't exist. Just that the people who react to those threats see evil everywhere and nowhere.
It's normal these things happens when you have people offended by Dr. No nowadays when 007 says "fetch my shoes", not realising the movie just depicts the white/black relationship on that island as it was then.
When you have such extremes, on the other end of the spectrum (pardon the pun) you will have such negatives reactions, it's inevitable when you have a wave of people wanting to erase heterosexual and white culture, that people reacts back.
The pendulum swings both ways. Extreme ways (Bourne reference).
On the other hand Spidey is likely getting only a month playing in China because by February the Chinese New Year’s Eve holiday will be filled with 13 new Chinese productions and among them a new war propaganda epic titled Sniper what will tell the story of a sniper that killed 243 US soldiers during the Korean War…
I know people who are so consumed with that line of thinking, they see conspiracies and mistruths everywhere. Their entire frame of reference and sense of reality has been tainted from the roots up.
Sounds like the "movie in movie" in Inglorious Basterds. Only it was satire in Tarantino's film.
Maybe now its time you let this go.
MI6HQ reported responsibly and honestly, and if the film makes a profit thanks to VOD then that's great and we will all celebrate.
It continues to amaze me that some of the members here, having their feelings hurt over someone's budget estimate of a freakin' movie, attack the people hosting the message board on which they're given free rein to be obnoxious.
When an apology article is issued I’ll consider it, but until then a lot of mayhem was spread through that attempt at amateur accounting. All of a sudden everywhere was re-reporting the impossible figures NTTD needed to reach to turn a profit and it became fuel for trolls. It’s not fair to ask me to drop it when nothing has been done by this website to rectify their shoddy reporting. I know based on the Twitter feed this site loves to get down on EON, but that article was a mistake and made purely for clickbait.
Speaking only for myself, my feelings aren't hurt by the MI6 article: it's just a terrible article that doesn't make sense, and it's depressing to see it used as a basis for further clickbait articles. It's a shame their wildly wrong box office predictions weren't also shared as widely!
Exactly. We didn't walk into someone's home and raid the fridge or call their daughters ugly. We are talking about financial predictions concerning a movie based on general principles. None of us has any direct stakes in this game or any direct impact on these numbers. The MI6 post did not, in any way, impact the BO result. And obviously, if NTTD makes EON/MGM/whoever good money and a decent profit, we'll be happy. In fact, many of us are already very happy with the film given, regardless of its performance at the BO.
Some folks need to take a stress pill and not bother so much with every small annoyance they face.
I don't really care about this, but MI6HQ reported independent and amatourish projections as facts and that's not honest at all.
No one knows exactly the real budget. No one knows exactly how much the delays costed. No one knows nothing at all about the financial deals with all the partners involved. As far as we know, the film could even hit the break even point by the end of its run with the theatrical release alone ($770M cume).
Do you have a link?
EDIT: I found it.
Doing his calculation he does a little error considering a 50% revenue from China as well.
Doing a quick math, adjusting that mistake:
Projected total gross: $770M (with $63 from China);
$770M - $63M = $707M/2 = $353,5M
25% of China's $63M is $15.5M
$353.5M + $15.5M = $369M
Add the $40M from NA boxoffice returned to studio for theatrical only:
$369M + $40M = $409M
$409M - $319M = $90M is the estimated studio revenue from the theatrical release alone of NTTD.
No film will stand or fall because of box office predictions , they do so based on the quality of the film and the desire of the audience to see it. No one failed to go see it because they read the MI6 article.
There was no mayhem, and it’s only the likes of you harping on about it that keeps it in the community conscience.
I don’t know who you are to ask for apologies because you don’t know for sure that the figures were actually incorrect. It suits your agenda to believe so.
But please if you prefer Ajay’s figures then shout them from the roof tops, it doesn’t bother me. What bothers me is a member of this community using this platform to constantly bite the hand that feeds it.
Any further discussion will now be done via pm.
It seemed to me Ajay was more bullish than that. There's another $200m in other deals to include, right?
In any case, it's good to see a breakdown that resembles reality in some way.
It's not about "preferring Ajay's figures". Ajay is actually attempting to account for all the money changing hands (or not changing hands). It's not anonymous clickbait that misrepresents the accounting.
Yes. That $90M figure is generated by the theatrical release alone. As usual Bond makes tons of money from merchandise, royalties, marketing tie-ins etc etc as well...
Ah, right, gotcha.
I appreciate your work in here by the way!
You assume, that the studio gets 50% of the box office?
It's different in every country.
In Germany it's 43%.
57% stays at the theatre.
Thanks man. And thanks for that info about Ajay.
Obviously those are estimates, as I written. It’s common practice to use the 50% figure to calculate the worldwide revenue, except for China. In the US the studio takes 55/60% for example.
The actual overall exact number is too difficult to calculate and there are informations we just don’t have, like the exact deductions from product placement, that Ajay estimates in $100M, tax incentives etc etc…
The point is NTTD doesn’t need to gross $900M to break even and by the end of its run it will do it, speaking about the theatrical release alone.
I'm just satisfied the film is where it is even with a disappointing showing from 2 of the biggest markets, US and China. $770m final will have earned it bragging rights, even if its eventually bested by Spidey.