Real World Relevance

OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
First of all, this is my first post on the MI6 forum. I've been following the site for many years and was very active on the IMDB message boards, while they were still running. Anyway, I'm curious to hear the opinions on the vague details regarding the plot. Ever since Purvis and Wade became involved with the franchise, I've been very weary of their writing and direction. In my honest opinion, I feel that Skyfall and SPECTRE had very little, "real world relevance."

It's true that Fleming wrote the novels as fantasy books for men, but there was always a political subtext, in both the novels and versions seen on the silver screen. As I have not been a big fan of the Craig films, I feel that Goldeneye was the last Bond film to accentuate the Cold War tension.

Essentially, the underlying Cold War themes are what made Bond thrilling in the first place. Now that we have reentered a political "tossed salad," is anyone hoping that these themes will be touched upon? M's monologue, in Skyfall, resonated with me, particularly in the following lines: "I'm frightened because our enemies are no longer known to us. They do not exist on a map, they aren't nations. They are individuals. And look around you - who do you fear? Can you see a face, a uniform, a flag? No, our world is not more transparent now, it's more opaque! It's in the shadows - that's where we must do battle."
A lot of those individuals are greed stricken people, hiding in the shadows of some country: Russia, U.S., Saudi Arabia, China and so on.

Would it be in the benefit of a thrilling script, to throw in these elements, or just focus on a plot that is almost virtually unrelated to anything going on in the world? I personally can't vibe with a film that's either about revenge on MI6 or a villain that magically orchestrated all of Bond's pain. If you think about it, there's too much going on in the world to have a script, oblivious to global events.

Thanks for reading!

Comments

  • NicNacNicNac Moderator
    Posts: 6,842
    Eon's main priority plot-wise is probably to avoid being overly political. They don't want to upset anyone which may effect their box office takings.

    I guess it's why Bond's enemies tend to have no allegiances to any obvious world power .

    Regardless of the cold war, in Octopussy one of the bad guys was a Russian, not the Russians.
    In GoldenEye it was a similar set up.

    And in both films the main villain was just some crazy villain with a grudge. Neither one had a political motivation.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 15,979
    I feel that directly referring to world leaders like Trump or Putin would not only badly date a Bond movie, but leave a real-world bad taste in one's mouth. I prefer Bond to be battling fantasy bad guys just on the edge of reality.
  • OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
    Posts: 35
    I find it ignorant and difficult to disregard direct nods to reality. I honestly feel that we haven't seen the "edge of reality" in a long time.

    In Goldeneye, we not only have a British agent on Russian territory, but a villain who is disgusted with the British Empire due in part to his Cossack lineage. Sure, it's silly, but those elements are allusions to the real deal.

    I'm sorry to all the lovers of Skyfall, but a full on attack of the MI6 ziggurat is a freaking joke.
  • chrisisallchrisisall Brosnan Defender Of The Realm
    Posts: 15,979
    OOWolf wrote: »
    I find it ignorant and difficult to disregard direct nods to reality. I honestly feel that we haven't seen the "edge of reality" in a long time.

    In Goldeneye, we not only have a British agent on Russian territory, but a villain who is disgusted with the British Empire due in part to his Cossack lineage. Sure, it's silly, but those elements are allusions to the real deal.

    I'm sorry to all the lovers of Skyfall, but a full on attack of the MI6 ziggurat is a freaking joke.

    I concur.

    The 'It's personal/revenge' thing is weak. Quantum was interesting IMO. In the end, SPECTRE took the teeth out of Quantum and gave us another comic book movie like DAF.
  • OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
    Posts: 35
    I agree about Quantum as well. It was plain and simply about an elite that wants control of the water supply. The premise was simple, but to the point, and not far from the greedy elites of today. I honestly like to pretend that SPECTRE never happened. What a mess!

    I feel the producers are under the impression that this sequel (revenge) business gives Craig's films more depth and allows the audience to become more vested. How wrong they are!
  • edited May 2 Posts: 932
    To me, real world relevance and focusing on one of today's big threats would involve a story on terrorism--which could tie in directly with SPECTRE, since that's part of the moniker. But as NicNac suggested, Eon might not want to offend anyone in that regard. And how would you tell the story, since the attacks have tended to be localized, unless you have a story about a villain who coordinates several simultaneous attacks on high-profile targets.

    The other thing is like the plots of OP and GE...with Russia and China being superpowers and Putin being a sneaky guy, you could do a retread of OP with a mad general who goes rogue. Or as in various Bond films including TSWLM, where Stromburg tried to pit the British and Soviets against each other--and as was done in the movie The Sum of All Fears (trying to trigger war between the U.S. and Russia)--work to pit one country against the other as opposed to a direct assault.

    Then you have the new technologies. On the military side, just yesterday there was a new article about how the U.S., Russia and China are in a race to develop hypersonic weapons "...which fly much faster than the speed of sound, which is 767 mph. Hypersonic missiles are rocket-boosted to high altitude and may be launched from land, sea or air. They fly far faster than any other weapons – more than 3,000 mph and potentially up to 10,000 mph – which makes them difficult to identify, avoid or shoot down." Plus Russia hopes to operate a fleet of new Tu-160 Supersonic Bombers that are stealthy and have improved air-launched cruise missiles.
  • edited May 3 Posts: 161
    If you look at how secret services work today, there wouldn’t be a lot of relevance for Bond to begin with and I believe that has been slightly touched on with the Nine Eyes plot in Spectre.

    In my country for example, there is legit speculation that secret service people own businesses and have leverage in their respective fields of activity by “spying” on competitors. You think Bond would agree to be part of such structure?

    For that reason, I believe people would rather watch Bond fight aliens as the Avengers do, than having to deal with the sad realities of the current world when entering the movie theatre.
  • Posts: 35
    Real world events have cast a shadow over the films since they started. The Cuban Missile Crisis over the 1960s films. The energy crisis of the 1970s on the plot of TMWTGG. Increased east-west tensions in the 1980s show in FYEO, OP and TLD. TND took obvious digs at Murdoch. Veiled reference to 9/11 in DAD and a clear one in CR. Silva being a clear nod to Julian Assanage. We just have to see what Bond 25 has in line for us.
  • OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
    Posts: 35
    Real world events have cast a shadow over the films since they started. The Cuban Missile Crisis over the 1960s films. The energy crisis of the 1970s on the plot of TMWTGG. Increased east-west tensions in the 1980s show in FYEO, OP and TLD. TND took obvious digs at Murdoch. Veiled reference to 9/11 in DAD and a clear one in CR. Silva being a clear nod to Julian Assanage. We just have to see what Bond 25 has in line for us.

    The thing is, there really are no "good" sides and "bad" sides; no one is essentially innocent. Russia, America, China and so on are all mixed into serious global affairs. So, how do you make a relevant, yet non-biased Bond film?

    We know that he can't really be fighting for the British Empire anymore, as thats become, well, kind of obsolete. I suppose the only way to make it work is by highlighting the severe growth of socio-economic disparity while countries continue to fight over natural resources. Then we have the whole Brexit thing to take into account when thinking about Bond.

    I would personally have a villain who's taking orders from the highest bidder. In that, I would include a smorgasbord of players which would eliminate potential criticism, like North Korea's anger over 'Die Another Day.'
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