Continuing to Challenge the Viewer's Intelligence

OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
edited May 24 in No Time To Die (2020) Posts: 35
I honestly believed that the whole point of the Craig era, was to bring forth a more believable iteration of our hero, involving more rhyme and reason.

As a lifelong Bond fan, I have had the need to express my deep disappointment in regards to the questionable decisions made by EON. I truly feel conned, after witnessing the results of the insulting screenplays of both Skyfall and SPECTRE. Quantum of Solace's script was greatly improvised, but to a certain extent, still had some form of "grounding" in regards to the story. Skyfall and SPECTRE were two films that were meant to be "grandiose" in nature, without any evident logic to tie events together, and which had extremely poor character development.

I've always wanted to know, what the lovers of the current films, have found appealing. My argument has always been that the films between Dr. No to Goldeneye, even TND were never meant to be taken seriously, but had a certain cohesiveness. In this cohesiveness, Dr. No-Goldeneye had elements of the Cold War with some explication on how the villains came to power. Skyfall and SPECTRE are both films that shouldn't have any place having such large, unthought out plot holes and underdeveloped characters.

How is it fair for us viewers to go and pay admission to the 25th installment of the franchise, knowing that these evident problems have been recurring for years? I feel offended as a Bond fan. Some would argue that I shouldn't continue to watch the films, but I think I've deserved a good, sparkly scripted film just like anyone else.

I just want to know how a multi-billion dollar franchise isn't mint in every respect. Now, after everything, Bond 25 is being considered a "****show" by various media sources because the script is once again a mess? Has the money been misallocated? I guess I would just like to hear the opinions on why things are the way they are. A common rebuttal is that the numbers have proven the current films' success, but many often forget the price of inflation, anniversaries and so on...

Where have all the good screenwriters gone? And why are Cubby's principles regarding the character being more important than the actor, being erased? George Lazenby, perhaps, never had a chance to fully come in on his own as Bond, but Fleming's story was so strong that even an unexperienced actor could play the lead in a film that's still being talked about, 50 years later. That's how good EON was. Now, an experienced actor, (Craig) has been given so much privilege and creative control on a franchise that he is clearly ready to leave, that it's hard to believe that this man is here for anything else aside from the money.

At the end of the day, I know that Cubby is long gone and the baby feels like it's been up for adoption for a good while...

Comments

  • thedovethedove hiding in the Greek underworld
    Posts: 1,960
    Interesting thoughts. There is some sentimental feelings here. For example you mention SP and SF as grandiose and full of plot holes. I could do the same for YOLT, DAF, MR, AVTAK, DAD, etc. You mention where have all the good screenwriters gone. Look at Maibaum writing 9 films? Then only a handful of others writing the others. Have P&W served their purpose? At this point I would say yes. Just don't forget that the older Bonds also had very limited screenwriters.

    Craig has been given creative control and privilege? Not sure I see that. I think he's imbued the character with things that play to his strength's. Is that any different then what Dalton and Brosnan did with their character?

    The character of Bond is a water downed version of what we saw in the 60's, 70' and a good chunk of the 80's. Does that change how he's viewed today? Yes, many of the character traits (flirting with Moneypenny, being a snob and expert on everything, etc.) these are gone, likely never to return.

    I think you are highlighting some of the challenges of film making today. It's all about audience test scores, it's about having a plot and characters that play well in foreign markets. It's not about the character any longer. Do you think DN gets made today with the same touches as the 60's? Many of today's audience would think it's slow, the action is laughable (really a guy with metal hands?). To my way of thinking we can't confuse or expect the character of the previous films to be in today's world. Yes Cubby's baby is gone but can be viewed. Today's Bond is a different character for a different time.
  • OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
    Posts: 35
    thedove wrote: »
    Interesting thoughts. There is some sentimental feelings here. For example you mention SP and SF as grandiose and full of plot holes. I could do the same for YOLT, DAF, MR, AVTAK, DAD, etc. You mention where have all the good screenwriters gone. Look at Maibaum writing 9 films? Then only a handful of others writing the others. Have P&W served their purpose? At this point I would say yes. Just don't forget that the older Bonds also had very limited screenwriters.

    Sure, I think we'll always have our own sentimental feelings toward the franchise. In regards to the films you mentioned, for the most part, they have mostly all served the purpose of fulfilling the Bond formula, established by Cubby. Maibaum had written 9 films, but was consistent in the delivery. Have P&W served their purpose? Well, I don't know. Seems to me that the quality has wavered, ever since they've been at the helm. As a matter of fact, they were responsible for the dastardly ridiculous 'DAD' that had plenty of potential. I honestly think that they are the worst things to happen to the series. So, you mention that the older Bonds had very limited screenwriters, though I'd argue that the few from back in the day were a lot stronger at redelivering an entertaining entry with vital cinematic Bond elements, each time.
    thedove wrote: »
    Craig has been given creative control and privilege? Not sure I see that. I think he's imbued the character with things that play to his strength's. Is that any different then what Dalton and Brosnan did with their character?

    Both Dalton and Brosnan had another film left in them. I feel that Craig has outstayed his tenure. Casino Royale was the best Craig could do. It's also important to acknowledge that Craig has had the most dynamic film career in comparison to Dalton and Brosnan. Having this in mind, there's really nothing else that he can do with the character. Purvis and Wade's incompetence to deliver a proper script curtailed Brosnan's interpretation of the character. Even he believed that Bond had gone off the deep end and was willing leave the role in style; one more film that would redeem his ruined reputation.
    thedove wrote: »
    The character of Bond is a water downed version of what we saw in the 60's, 70' and a good chunk of the 80's. Does that change how he's viewed today? Yes, many of the character traits (flirting with Moneypenny, being a snob and expert on everything, etc.) these are gone, likely never to return.

    Then what makes Bond, Bond?
    thedove wrote: »
    I think you are highlighting some of the challenges of film making today. It's all about audience test scores, it's about having a plot and characters that play well in foreign markets. It's not about the character any longer. Do you think DN gets made today with the same touches as the 60's? Many of today's audience would think it's slow, the action is laughable (really a guy with metal hands?). To my way of thinking we can't confuse or expect the character of the previous films to be in today's world. Yes Cubby's baby is gone but can be viewed. Today's Bond is a different character for a different time.

    Yeah, today's Bond is a different character for a different time, but how different does he need to be before he loses his identity? They've already tampered with his physical appearance to begin with. At the end of the day, it all amounts to the writing. The thing that made the old films special were the indirect allusions to the times. We're in the middle of a plethora of global crisis' which need to be addressed in some way. I'm sorry, but neither Silva nor the pathetic iteration of Blofeld showed any relevance to real life threats. We as the viewers need to be able to latch on to something that we can relate to. Both Skyfall and SPECTRE were far removed...from just about EVERYTHING!

    Anyway mate, thanks for chiming in! I liked reading your views and commentary. You made some good points yourself.
  • Posts: 5,388
    OOWolf wrote: »
    I honestly believed that the whole point of the Craig era, was to bring forth a more believable iteration of our hero, involving more rhyme and reason.

    As a lifelong Bond fan, I have had the need to express my deep disappointment in regards to the questionable decisions made by EON. I truly feel conned, after witnessing the results of the insulting screenplays of both Skyfall and SPECTRE. Quantum of Solace's script was greatly improvised, but to a certain extent, still had some form of "grounding" in regards to the story. Skyfall and SPECTRE were two films that were meant to be "grandiose" in nature, without any evident logic to tie events together, and which had extremely poor character development.

    I've always wanted to know, what the lovers of the current films, have found appealing. My argument has always been that the films between Dr. No to Goldeneye, even TND were never meant to be taken seriously, but had a certain cohesiveness. In this cohesiveness, Dr. No-Goldeneye had elements of the Cold War with some explication on how the villains came to power. Skyfall and SPECTRE are both films that shouldn't have any place having such large, unthought out plot holes and underdeveloped characters.

    How is it fair for us viewers to go and pay admission to the 25th installment of the franchise, knowing that these evident problems have been recurring for years? I feel offended as a Bond fan. Some would argue that I shouldn't continue to watch the films, but I think I've deserved a good, sparkly scripted film just like anyone else.

    I just want to know how a multi-billion dollar franchise isn't mint in every respect. Now, after everything, Bond 25 is being considered a "****show" by various media sources because the script is once again a mess? Has the money been misallocated? I guess I would just like to hear the opinions on why things are the way they are. A common rebuttal is that the numbers have proven the current films' success, but many often forget the price of inflation, anniversaries and so on...

    Where have all the good screenwriters gone? And why are Cubby's principles regarding the character being more important than the actor, being erased? George Lazenby, perhaps, never had a chance to fully come in on his own as Bond, but Fleming's story was so strong that even an unexperienced actor could play the lead in a film that's still being talked about, 50 years later. That's how good EON was. Now, an experienced actor, (Craig) has been given so much privilege and creative control on a franchise that he is clearly ready to leave, that it's hard to believe that this man is here for anything else aside from the money.

    At the end of the day, I know that Cubby is long gone and the baby feels like it's been up for adoption for a good while...
    More like the baby has grown up and became its own character, for better or worse.
    Overall I very much agree with your sentiments, OOWolf. But I don't think much of the concept of putting demands to an industry. I became a Bond fan because I realised that, at least to my eyes, they were extremely well-crafted works. And that's what I'm interested in. I love it. I can pop in any old Bond film in the evening, and have a good feeling waking up the next morning.
    Even Bond films don't deserve to be built a shrine for. They have to prove themselves over and over again. I find my life too valuable to spill tears over a film franchise losing a step. At the moment I'm not excited about B25. I'm open to be excited again by a Bond film.

  • LeonardPineLeonardPine The Bar on the Beach
    Posts: 2,701
    Good post, @OOWolf i can see where you're coming from with regards to SF and SP. The makers had a chance to really push on from CR and QoS which were a breath of fresh air for the Bond series. QoS isn't perfect, but personally i love it's lean mean format and shorter running time. Both films launched a new beginning and a really classy actor that grabbed the role by the scruff of the neck and made it his.

    SF and SP were a step back. Those bloody gadgets returned, Q returned, as did the horrible 'scooby gang' in which supporting characters got in on the action. The series didn't need all that stuff back again. Much as i enjoyed SF (and less so SP) i was disappointed in the makers crazy decision to 'reboot' yet again after only 2 films. Like you i was also annoyed at the lazy plot holes and lack of character development in them.

    I'm not particularly excited for Bond 25 (The guy that took photo's at my workplace for a possible location admitted to me that the production was a 'total cock up') but i, like a lot of us, can only hope it turns out to be up there with Craig's first two films.
  • Posts: 5,388
    OOWolf wrote: »
    . As a matter of fact, they were responsible for the dastardly ridiculous 'DAD' that had plenty of potential. I honestly think that they are the worst things to happen to the series. So, you mention that the older Bonds had very limited screenwriters, though I'd argue that the few from back in the day were a lot stronger at redelivering an entertaining entry with vital cinematic Bond elements, each time.
    Writers write mostly what they are told. You can see this also with P&W, because they did pretty different things.
    I for one find DAD ond of the best films in recent times, because it makes a point of being silly right from the start, it's one of the least pretentious Bond films ever.
    Even he believed that Bond had gone off the deep end and was willing leave the role in style; one more film that would redeem his ruined reputation.
    Brosnan was highly popular. There was no ruined reputation.
    Then what makes Bond, Bond?
    Well, that's easy. Craig's Bond in his first two films was nothing like traditional Bond, but he was totally in control. It would have been easy to build on that. Don't ask me why they didn't.
  • 4EverBonded4EverBonded Dancing at midnight under the BeBop Moon
    edited May 26 Posts: 11,523
    Oh I think the Bond franchise is in great hands. Craig's era is very memorable indeed. He is one of my favorite Bonds, though I honestly like all of them but one. CR and SF outstanding Bond films. I'm excited about Cary directing Bond 25 and I have no problem at all with the writers on this one. I am a lifelong Bond fan and an older one (in my 60's now). I have no worries about Bond "losing his identity."

    Bond has lasted this long because it does change, the films change, the main actor changes, grows. I have no qualms saying that we're lucky EON has been in charge for this long. In other corporate hands the series probably would have died years ago.
  • 4EverBonded4EverBonded Dancing at midnight under the BeBop Moon
    Posts: 11,523
    Also, I was surprised to read the vehemence of this part. I simply politely disagree with all of this:
    I just want to know how a multi-billion dollar franchise isn't mint in every respect. Now, after everything, Bond 25 is being considered a "****show" by various media sources because the script is once again a mess? Has the money been misallocated? I guess I would just like to hear the opinions on why things are the way they are. A common rebuttal is that the numbers have proven the current films' success, but many often forget the price of inflation, anniversaries and so on...

    I don't read anywhere that Bond 25 is considered a "****show" ... except by a few on this forum sometimes.
  • edited May 26 Posts: 11,894
    Interesting post, @OOWolf. I’m having trouble writing a good comment about the points you make, but I’ll try to add a few thoughts myself.

    As @thedove writes, you’ll find plot holes in any Bond film, and previous films’ scripts have been a mixed bag in quality too. You mention the Cold War, and that’s definitely an advantage the older films have. The backdrop that period provided was a great tool not only for the scriptwriters, but also Fleming himself.

    I don’t find much enjoyment in the last two films though, so we’re in the same boat there. Is it the scripts that make me enjoy those films less than the previous ones? For SP, absolutely. I’ve mentioned in other threads that I find it hard to believe that this film was even made. SF’s script isn’t too good either, IMO. My biggest issue with these two films, is that I never really get the feeling of watching Bond films. That’s an issue I have trouble putting my finger on as to why, but it’s definitely there.

    As a result of the last two films, I don’t find myself as excited for Bond 25 as I should be. It’s great to finally see a Bond film shot in Norway (where I live), but beyond that, I’m not too interested really. The Craig era isn’t for me. In contrast, I’m really, really looking forward to Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, because I know Quentin Tarantino will deliver a good script. He always does.
  • Posts: 700
    I will echo what others have said in this is a thoughtful post worthy of discussion.

    I like the Craig Bond and most of the direction of the series in his era although I find SF wildly overrated and SP less and less interesting each time I watch, but Craig holds my interest in them. We've been lucky to have him in the role. I do wonder about the extent of the creative and behind the scenes involvement he's been allowed and how that may have affected things, but I don't brood over it either.

    The whole "tampering with Bond's physical appearance" thing is so 2005. So he's blond and shorter, it never bothered me. They could get any male model that fits the Fleming description. It's other aspects that have helped him make the part his own. I also don't necessarily think if Brosnan had gotten a fifth film he would have necessarily knocked it out of the park. That's another point done to death on forums over the years.

    The series has also almost always addressed real-world concerns in it depending on what was going on at the time and the recent films have done fine addressing this. I'm not sure which real-world threats they should address. I don't know there'd be a lot of interest in Bond investigating Russian involvement in American elections.

    I'm ready for Bond 25 and hope they'll come up with something great and look forward to where it goes from there. As others have said, I can always enjoy the previous entries on their own level.
  • OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
    Posts: 35
    Thanks for the continuing discussion, everyone! Really enjoy reading your thoughts in regards to the scope of the series.

    I think it would be safe to say that the future of Bond is very tricky. I'm not going to lose any sleep if we stop getting any new films or they just keep on going downhill in quality, but I'd like to imagine what the future may hold.

    BT3366 thinks that my comment on "tampering with Bond's physical appearance" is so 2005, but I wholeheartedly disagree. Lazenby went to Sean's tailor and barber to get the look, so when he rolled in for 'OHMSS,' it didn't feel like a drastic physical departure. For me, a Bond film is about the whole package: the look of the lead who slightly changes, the sexiness of the women and locations, the witty dialogue, recognizable/melodic musical motifs, the uniqueness of the villain and his/her plans, plus the slight relevance to the current state of the world.

    To this day, 'Goldeneye' is the best "modern" example of my points. That film had an amalgam of things that made Bond special for 33 years. You have Pierce, who physically looks like a natural successor to Dalton and his demeanor, which is a mix of that of his predecessors. The women have crazy names and are badass, the villains are ruthless, the soundtrack is simply cool, the locations are intriguing and very well used, the script is on point and so is the direction. The opening sequence in the Russian facility is outright thrilling. You know the movie will be a blast to watch when the film starts with our hero trying to blow up and escape a Russian facility, during the Cold War. It's touchy because it taps into reality, even remotely.

    Nowadays, we have global capitalistic systems that are gung-ho on staying strong and alive, and it's a power hungry game between America, Russia, and China. Let's not forget the ever-present environmental crisis, but that can always be an underlying theme. In terms of spying, it has surely changed greatly since 'Goldeneye,' due to surveillance systems and the works, but these are all things that should be taken into account. Smart screenwriters would know how to tap into all of this. If we were to take 'Goldeneye' and 'Skyfall' and put them side by side, we'd see that 'Skyfall' is more 1995 than 'Goldeneye.' It's like releasing top secret evidence from 200 years ago; however, it doesn't matter now as the information is impertinent. Silva's revenge on MI6 is as antiquated as the "it's called a radio" bs, at his island lair.

    We have entered an age of plasticity and phoniness. Why would it be politically incorrect to tap into the theme of the power hungry game occurring on the planet? Instead of EON allocating its funds to finding the world's best writers, they're bringing in things such as "intimacy" coaches? Really? Instead of actors being respectful professionals, they need a moderator? Wow, they're so progressive and ahead of the curve. Give me a break. God forbid a character has a name like Onatopp in today's day!!

    Maybe I'm too much of a dreamer by this point. Maybe it's futile to think about a classic Bond film in this day and age. I guess the title theme song shouldn't ever be bombastic again, or the musical cues exciting, or a character not having to be introduced for the sake of a "reboot," or a villain having a unique scheme, or a lead being tall, dark haired and handsomely rugged like Fleming envisioned...

  • It’s to Eon’s credit that 007’s popularity has been kept alive in an era when fantasy and magic hold sway. Yes, Bond could arguably be described as a costumed superhero - and he’s certainly a fantasy figure - but he's been around a long time, and his older iterations are open to charges of sexism, misogyny, etc.

    From the filmmakers’ viewpoint its all about “repositioning the brand” in a fast-changing, increasingly confusing world, in order to protect the revenue stream. Considerations of artistic (as opposed to financial) success and being faithful to Fleming have to take second place in the harsh realities of the marketplace.
  • Posts: 357
    OOWolf wrote: »
    If we were to take 'Goldeneye' and 'Skyfall' and put them side by side, we'd see that 'Skyfall' is more 1995 than 'Goldeneye.' It's like releasing top secret evidence from 200 years ago; however, it doesn't matter now as the information is impertinent. Silva's revenge on MI6 is as antiquated as the "it's called a radio" bs, at his island lair.

    I'd also argue that with some very slight tweaks, TND and TWINE could easily be made today and be relevant, which isn't the case for many Bond films due to the Cold War elements.


    OOWolf wrote: »
    We have entered an age of plasticity and phoniness. Why would it be politically incorrect to tap into the theme of the power hungry game occurring on the planet? Instead of EON allocating its funds to finding the world's best writers, they're bringing in things such as "intimacy" coaches? Really? Instead of actors being respectful professionals, they need a moderator? Wow, they're so progressive and ahead of the curve. Give me a break. God forbid a character has a name like Onatopp in today's day!!

    Maybe I'm too much of a dreamer by this point. Maybe it's futile to think about a classic Bond film in this day and age. I guess the title theme song shouldn't ever be bombastic again, or the musical cues exciting, or a character not having to be introduced for the sake of a "reboot," or a villain having a unique scheme, or a lead being tall, dark haired and handsomely rugged like Fleming envisioned...

    I was thinking of something along those lines the other day, but in relation to the Disney-era Star Wars films. SW in 1977 was quite different from most 1970s films, which tended toward a cynical, gritty feel (in keeping with the decade itself). The modern films are very "current era" (and will date quickly, IMO), and Bond has had the same change.

    There's no denying that over the years, Bond readily aped the popular trend, whether it was Blaxploitation with LALD, kung-fu with TMWTGG, or space in Moonraker. But the films still were, at their core, Bond. The mix was always Bond plus [popular element].

    The Craig era, they tried to pull in elements of more modern thrillers like Bourne, but lost the Bond essence along the way. I feel it's why all the "trappings" of Bond they keep trying to shove in (such as the overuse of the DB5) feel...inauthentic. It's too forced. And I suspect someone (or several people) at Eon senses that they've lost the feel, so they keep amping up the "nostalgia" elements, but that only exacerbates the problem. Instead of Bond plus [popular element], we now have [common elements] plus Bond, and it just isn't satisfying.
  • OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
    Posts: 35
    Success and being faithful to Fleming have to take second place in the harsh realities of the marketplace.

    What the hell is it that people want nowadays, in this oversaturated market? I've been over superhero films for many years, but what is it that's making people go bat**** crazy over a film like The Avengers? I'm still trying to figure this out. I've read that many Americans enjoy these superhero films, because they feel like they need a hero or saving grace. Is Bond not enough of a superhero? Do people actually need something that's so remote from reality to feel a sense of solace?



  • OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
    Posts: 35
    MooreFun wrote: »

    The Craig era, they tried to pull in elements of more modern thrillers like Bourne, but lost the Bond essence along the way. I feel it's why all the "trappings" of Bond they keep trying to shove in (such as the overuse of the DB5) feel...inauthentic. It's too forced. And I suspect someone (or several people) at Eon senses that they've lost the feel, so they keep amping up the "nostalgia" elements, but that only exacerbates the problem. Instead of Bond plus [popular element], we now have [common elements] plus Bond, and it just isn't satisfying.

    Cannot agree more. I found the reintroduction of Moneypenny in Skyfall to be absolutely cringeworthy, along with the "with pleasure M, with pleasure," bit. Hollywood/ the mainstream film industry makes a grave mistake in thinking that by using a classic name, they'll be able to reel in a new generation of viewers. At the end of the day, it's only the generations that grew up with Bond that have any relationship to these names or nods. Bond has always had to keep up with the times and this should be no exception, but I guess the question is, are we in such a faceless time that only nods make the passing mark?

    I feel that the franchise would have a few more strong decades, if the focus were on the classic formula, in the modern day. So, Bond is a super agent that's wielding a Walther PPK in a lockdown of half of the city, in the 2010s? I really thought that something as small as the gun change in 'TND' would have given the viewer hope for a natural continuation of standalone films for many more years to come.

    Lastly, how have EON managed to lose the feel, when Michael G. Wilson was involved with the writing of some fantastic entries? Maybe he and B.B. are out of steam, by this point. I just know that if they are, I would rather not contribute to the success of something 'half-assed,' which is of course difficult for someone who has been a fan for so long.



  • thedovethedove hiding in the Greek underworld
    Posts: 1,960
    The Super Hero movies are a prime example of the World wide box office effect. Many of these movies do amazing box office all over the world.

    Craig, but really Babs and Michael, decided to make Bond serious. They decided to make it played straight not for laughs and certainly not for an escape. Recently watched an interview with Moore on AVTAK and he said "Cubby views this as family entertainment." I could go and see the Bond films of the 80's with my parents. (and frequently did) I can't show any of the recent Bond's to my kids. Too bloody and violent. All so we can see a blunt instrument kill people in bloody ways. We can see him brooding and reflecting on the damage he's done.

    What blood was shown in Connery's Bond? Somehow without the blood Bond was bad ass and still seen as a tough and merciless spy. In the first film we see him shoot an unarmed man in the back. Yet we know he's the hero and we now have seen what Licence to Kill means.

    Someone had the great idea that we needed to see how Bond became Bond. An idea that Cubby hated and vetoed previous times. Why do we need to see how he became the character? I must admit that I am getting wary of all these "how _____ became ______". It was a fresh idea but now it's just been overplayed. It will be fascinating to see if they "reboot" Bond after Craig, or whether someone comes in and plays him different. Where will the producers take things? Will they want the new Bond to continue the blunt instrument?

    Here we are, with the blunt instrument. The man who has a place with few pieces of furniture and lives in a un-decorated flat. Compare with Connery's digs in DN and Moore in LALD. Those homes showed you about the Bond character. The style, the glamour and gadgets of Bond. Now our Bond sits in a darkened flat that looks like he's just moved in. He doesn't care about his house? I guess that shows us a side to the character. Can we see Moore's Bond sitting in such a shamble? No it would be out of character. Those little touches that while not directly linked to the character, but they showed you about the character without the need for dialogue.

    This gets to your point of the thread. The Bond of yesteryear is gone. I doubt even Craig's successor brings it back. We might see a lighting up of dark serious tone. I doubt we will get a Bond that can sniff Brandy and know what's wrong with it. A Bond that slaps women on the butt while they walk by. A Bond that hardly breaks a sweat while dispatching bad guys.
  • OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
    Posts: 35
    thedove wrote: »
    The Super Hero movies are a prime example of the World wide box office effect. Many of these movies do amazing box office all over the world.

    Craig, but really Babs and Michael, decided to make Bond serious. They decided to make it played straight not for laughs and certainly not for an escape. Recently watched an interview with Moore on AVTAK and he said "Cubby views this as family entertainment." I could go and see the Bond films of the 80's with my parents. (and frequently did) I can't show any of the recent Bond's to my kids. Too bloody and violent. All so we can see a blunt instrument kill people in bloody ways. We can see him brooding and reflecting on the damage he's done.

    What blood was shown in Connery's Bond? Somehow without the blood Bond was bad ass and still seen as a tough and merciless spy. In the first film we see him shoot an unarmed man in the back. Yet we know he's the hero and we now have seen what Licence to Kill means.

    Someone had the great idea that we needed to see how Bond became Bond. An idea that Cubby hated and vetoed previous times. Why do we need to see how he became the character? I must admit that I am getting wary of all these "how _____ became ______". It was a fresh idea but now it's just been overplayed. It will be fascinating to see if they "reboot" Bond after Craig, or whether someone comes in and plays him different. Where will the producers take things? Will they want the new Bond to continue the blunt instrument?

    Here we are, with the blunt instrument. The man who has a place with few pieces of furniture and lives in a un-decorated flat. Compare with Connery's digs in DN and Moore in LALD. Those homes showed you about the Bond character. The style, the glamour and gadgets of Bond. Now our Bond sits in a darkened flat that looks like he's just moved in. He doesn't care about his house? I guess that shows us a side to the character. Can we see Moore's Bond sitting in such a shamble? No it would be out of character. Those little touches that while not directly linked to the character, but they showed you about the character without the need for dialogue.

    This gets to your point of the thread. The Bond of yesteryear is gone. I doubt even Craig's successor brings it back. We might see a lighting up of dark serious tone. I doubt we will get a Bond that can sniff Brandy and know what's wrong with it. A Bond that slaps women on the butt while they walk by. A Bond that hardly breaks a sweat while dispatching bad guys.


    Absolutely, on all accounts. You saw 0 blood when Bond killed Professor Dent, but boy do we see how cold and ruthless Bond could be. Yes, the new films have traded in tact for moments of extreme violence. Just another example of the films' loss of personality...

    Also, no reason for Bond to be in a darkened, empty flat. In the novels we see that Bond is willing to pay the price of sacrificing his life to live a fairly luxurious lifestyle. Would we not enjoy seeing Bond enjoying a 3 course meal? I know I would, because it would show the dynamic nature of the character, but hey, as you say, Babs and Michael prefer a blunt instrument, and look, now they're in a rut...
  • thedove wrote: »
    Someone had the great idea that we needed to see how Bond became Bond. An idea that Cubby hated and vetoed previous times. Why do we need to see how he became the character?

    I agree - this preoccupation with 'origins' stories diminishes the character's mystique. Nor would I want to see how Sherlock Holmes became Sherlock Holmes, or how Sergio Leone's Man With No Name became that character.

    Some of the problems Bond faces in the current cinema market:

    Fancy gadgets are now so common in everyday life that they're taken for granted.

    Likewise globetrotting travel.

    The sex element that used to be part of the Bond films' appeal (and the sex element of mainstream cinema in general, come to that) has been dialled down for obvious reasons, pandering to the Male Gaze being frowned upon these days. When every conceivable variety of pornography is available online at a single tap or click, people who prefer an erotic element as just one of several ingredients in their entertainment are pretty much left high and dry, so to speak.
  • OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
    Posts: 35
    thedove wrote: »
    Someone had the great idea that we needed to see how Bond became Bond. An idea that Cubby hated and vetoed previous times. Why do we need to see how he became the character?

    I agree - this preoccupation with 'origins' stories diminishes the character's mystique. Nor would I want to see how Sherlock Holmes became Sherlock Holmes, or how Sergio Leone's Man With No Name became that character.

    Some of the problems Bond faces in the current cinema market:

    Fancy gadgets are now so common in everyday life that they're taken for granted.

    Likewise globetrotting travel.

    The sex element that used to be part of the Bond films' appeal (and the sex element of mainstream cinema in general, come to that) has been dialled down for obvious reasons, pandering to the Male Gaze being frowned upon these days. When every conceivable variety of pornography is available online at a single tap or click, people who prefer an erotic element as just one of several ingredients in their entertainment are pretty much left high and dry, so to speak.


    Exactly this. I couldn't have said it better. As the 'origin' mumbo jumbo is concerned, it was the point when the studios no longer knew where to go. Hollywood has underestimated its viewers, believing that they can fill in their lack of imagination with full exposition. As you said, this resulted in the loss of mystique.

    It's very obvious how confounded everything has become. There are a lot of grey areas with virtually no definition. Why should a sexy element be treasured if you can virtually access anything and everything pornographically related? All of us spend so much time in front of our screens, accessing whatever we want, that we hold very little value for things. This is all directly relatable to Bond, so you're completely on point.



  • Posts: 5,094
    The origin of Bond, though?... was it, CR, a true origin film? He did his first two kills in the PTS. That’s how he became Agent 007... The rest of the film is an assignment like any other in the series— he just has more of an arc in this one.
  • Posts: 338
    I'm with @peter . To be honest, SP taps into Bond's "origins" more than CR.

    For me, the only thing I miss with the Craig era is the swagger. A lot of the new elements, to be honest, are welcomed. They needed to distance themselves from pastiches and cartoonism of Bond. Bond has always been in the world of grounded fantasy and I'd prefer that continue.

    As far as the womanizing goes, I'm very okay with that staying in the past. I dont really want to watch him banging every female or slapping them around. If there's purpose (to get information or a relationship has been established) that's one thing. Now dont get me wrong, I'm not vying for the Bond equal bullcrap, but gosh I hope the era of Tiffany Cases and Stacy Suttons are gone.
  • thedovethedove hiding in the Greek underworld
    Posts: 1,960
    Yet in CR Bond bashes through walls. He kills a Bomb maker and blows up an embassy. He was the blunt instrument. I read that Wilson was pushing for a younger Bond after Moore so they could show you how he became Bond. Cubby hated the idea and said audiences didn't need to see Bond becoming Bond. To be honest I don't think we have Bond now.

    At no point in the current Bond movies have we seen things like Dalton's Bond ordering a different champagne for Koskov because the choice was "questionable". I haven't seen him know the Brandy was indifferently blended. Those character touches are gone. Replaced with a blunt instrument who actions his way to the climax of the film. This Bond use force and not smarts to get to where he needs to.

    To me the interesting thing is what happens post Craig? Do we see a lighter and less serious Bond? Do we see a return to films that the whole family can watch? Or do we see more serious, brooding Bond. A Bond who bloodies the bad guys and lets them bleed out of their jugular?

    Funny thought, we can't show Bond smoking but we can show him cradling a man while he bleeds out through his neck. After all the smoking is harmful for your health and if Bond were seen smoking kids all over would pick up the habit. Ironic as most kids can't even watch the new films due to the violence.

    I long for the days of a movie that my boys can watch with me. A movie that has some light moments, that has character touches that enhance the experience. A Bond who is cooler and way smarter then those around him. I just don't think it's coming back.

  • Posts: 338
    thedove wrote: »
    Yet in CR Bond bashes through walls. He kills a Bomb maker and blows up an embassy. He was the blunt instrument. I read that Wilson was pushing for a younger Bond after Moore so they could show you how he became Bond. Cubby hated the idea and said audiences didn't need to see Bond becoming Bond. To be honest I don't think we have Bond now.

    At no point in the current Bond movies have we seen things like Dalton's Bond ordering a different champagne for Koskov because the choice was "questionable". I haven't seen him know the Brandy was indifferently blended. Those character touches are gone. Replaced with a blunt instrument who actions his way to the climax of the film. This Bond use force and not smarts to get to where he needs to.

    To me the interesting thing is what happens post Craig? Do we see a lighter and less serious Bond? Do we see a return to films that the whole family can watch? Or do we see more serious, brooding Bond. A Bond who bloodies the bad guys and lets them bleed out of their jugular?

    Funny thought, we can't show Bond smoking but we can show him cradling a man while he bleeds out through his neck. After all the smoking is harmful for your health and if Bond were seen smoking kids all over would pick up the habit. Ironic as most kids can't even watch the new films due to the violence.

    I long for the days of a movie that my boys can watch with me. A movie that has some light moments, that has character touches that enhance the experience. A Bond who is cooler and way smarter then those around him. I just don't think it's coming back.
    The blunt instrument really only applies to CR and the brutality aspect died after QOS, wouldn't you agree? While I started getting into bond in my early teens, I struggle with calling it a "family movie." Sure there's the way violence is shown today, but what about other aspects? Surely the constant bedding of women isn't appropriate? Then there's the alcoholism and the smoking (in the older films) among other bad habits. The character itself isn't built for a PG world.

    I wouldn't get too down though. While the tone has taken a more serious path, I don't doubt for a second that the 'light-hearted' escapism will make a comeback. Perhaps not to a Roger More extent, but it'll be there. I mean, what was Spectre?
  • OOWolfOOWolf Savannah
    Posts: 35
    I don't think the constant bedding of women is appropriate nor inappropriate. Also, if the man wants to drink and smoke, let him drink and smoke. The whole point is that this is escapism!! It should be fun. The PC phoniness that we have adopted is a reflection of the superficiality of society. If we were all to really use our heads, none of this would be a problem. If Bond smokes on screen, it does not mean that a kid will take up smoking. As the women are concerned, it's not like Bond rapes any of them. They can't resist his charm, for the most part, which is how it should be! He's bloody Bond!

    By the looks of it, they wouldn't know how to bring back 'witty light-hearted' escapism if it bit them in the ass. I've never felt that the films have been more banal, than now. Every film up to 'TND' -everything before Purvis &Wade- could be watched with the family, yet more than often had humor that only adults could understand. I miss that! I miss dialogue that's actually THOUGHT OUT! Silva's "rat" story or Oberhauser's (yes, I refuse to call him Blofeld) stupid "coo coo" repetitions are just light examples of the banality of the thrown together scripts. It's quite a conundrum as the simplicity of the dialog during Craig's era defeats the supposed "seriousness" aimed at a mature audience.

    Where are the moments where a parrot talks to the prime minister over the phone, or when Bond criticizes Defense Minister Mishkin for skipping the small talk and the chit chat of a good interrogation? Goodness, those are probably some of the lamest examples I could have thought of from the top of my head, but you all get the idea!


  • Posts: 615
    OOWolf wrote: »
    . . . Where are the moments where a parrot talks to the prime minister over the phone . . .

    Mate, I like a good whinge as much as anyone, but I think you've stepped over the line here. . .
  • edited May 28 Posts: 11,894
    I absolutely love that scene. :))
  • thedovethedove hiding in the Greek underworld
    Posts: 1,960
    "The blunt instrument really only applies to CR and the brutality aspect died after QOS, wouldn't you agree?"

    I'd say they have somewhat muted the gore. However Hinx poking the man's eyes out was pretty graphic. In SF I would say section where Bond, M and Kinkaid pull a Home Alone on Silva's men has some of that violence.

    I guess when I say Family Entertainment, I would be referring to older films and their lack of blood. I think the tone of Bond switched when Saltzman left the series. From that moment it changed the tone of the films and made them more family friendly.
  • thedovethedove hiding in the Greek underworld
    Posts: 1,960
    After scouring the threads @00Agent I think this thread might be the one to allow you to expand on the thoughts about character and tone?
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