The importance of Skyfall

edited August 13 in Skyfall Posts: 3,315
I found this really interesting recent article on Google News about the significance of the Skyfall house:
https://filmschoolrejects.com/skyfall/

skyfall-2.jpg

When Bond first hears the word ‘Skyfall’, it’s an attempt by the MI6 psychologist to test him. Bond refuses to answer the question which essentially provides the answer itself. There are clearly some unresolved issues from his childhood and a traumatic event that he needs to address. ‘Skyfall’ has specific traumatic resonance with Bond.

When in mortal danger, Bond decides to take M back to Skyfall – the source of his original trauma. I imagine he took her to such a private and personal place because he trusts her. It’s the biggest insight into his personal life that he has offered anyone. Clearlyhe sees M as a friend and something of a surrogate mother.

Later we learn that Bond learned of his parents’ death whilst at Skyfall and he spent his childhood there. Essentially, this was the place where he became Bond and shaped his life. Skyfall created him and led him to his inevitable path of becoming 007.

In destroying the house, Bond is able to confront his past and destroy the painful memories associated with it. Later, in his family chapel, he holds the dying body of his surrogate mother – the woman who has shaped his adult life. Having put his past trauma behind him and now without his surrogate mother, Bond is left to confront a ‘brave new world’ alone.

What are other people's take on it?

Comments

  • thedovethedove hiding in the Greek underworld
    Posts: 1,902
    You've hit it on the head in my mind @Pierce2Daniel well written and thought out. I think this plays at the very heart of the movie. Notice when he wants to go off the grid he heads back to home. Even though painful memories exist there. A wonderful analogy for the pain he felt as a boy.

    Also notice that he only gets really pissed and angry when Silva takes out the Aston Martin. He associates more with the car then the homestead. Clearly there was no longer the emotional hold on him as a place. He was able to let go.
  • Posts: 3,315
    thedove wrote: »
    You've hit it on the head in my mind @Pierce2Daniel well written and thought out. I think this plays at the very heart of the movie. Notice when he wants to go off the grid he heads back to home. Even though painful memories exist there. A wonderful analogy for the pain he felt as a boy.

    Also notice that he only gets really pissed and angry when Silva takes out the Aston Martin. He associates more with the car then the homestead. Clearly there was no longer the emotional hold on him as a place. He was able to let go.

    This is a really interesting point that I didn’t consider. I like it……considering he is retreating, the notion of returning ‘home’ feels analogous to a child returning to his house to protect himself.

    Also, an interesting point to bear in mind is the moment M says ‘No wonder you never came back’, there’s the suggestion that after he heard the news of his parents' death from Kincade that he had never returned to the site they were buried. The first time he does return is in 2012 - around 30 years later - when M is under attack and he needs to protect her.

    It’s interesting that they settled on the title ‘Skyfall’. Purvis and Wade explain it in a podcast the following way:

    http://www.empireonline.com/features/purvis-and-wade-on-skyfall

    Neal Purvis: “Unfortunately Rob came up with the title. Not as a title, he came up with the name of the house.”

    Robert Wade: “We were looking for a name for this house…”

    Purvis:
    “Like Manderley in (Daphne du Maurier’s) Rebecca.”

    Wade: “Exactly. It’s evocative, and you don’t really know what it means. And it was two o’clock in the morning, and the script had to go off, and I typed ‘Skyfall’. So it sort of fell out of the sky, actually. And I never thought that that would end up as the title of the movie. But it obviously struck a chord. But if we’d thought the name of the house would be the name of the film, and the name of the song…”

    Purvis: “We’d have talked about it a little bit longer.”

    Wade: “And maybe have done a three-syllable house name. Like Manderley – that’s pretty good, actually.”

    Purvis:
    “Yeah. It’s the first two syllable Bond title, actually. Some people find that interesting (laughs).”


    I suppose the name of the house is significant as it’s an essential part of the creation myth surrounding 007. Sam Mendes wanted to deconstruct the idea of who James Bond is. Naming the film after the house is a direct reference to a place we know as deep psychological and formative significance to Bond.

    Also, it may reference Bond’s parents death (as they fell in a climbing accident), and likely references the term “the sky is falling” which is often a term used in reference to the end of the world/apocalypse. Which I’m sure is how a young Bond may have felt hearing the news.
  • edited August 15 Posts: 394
    It’s interesting that they settled on the title ‘Skyfall’. Purvis and Wade explain it in a podcast the following way:

    http://www.empireonline.com/features/purvis-and-wade-on-skyfall

    Neal Purvis: “Unfortunately Rob came up with the title. Not as a title, he came up with the name of the house.”

    Robert Wade: “We were looking for a name for this house…”

    Purvis:
    “Like Manderley in (Daphne du Maurier’s) Rebecca.”

    Wade: “Exactly. It’s evocative, and you don’t really know what it means. And it was two o’clock in the morning, and the script had to go off, and I typed ‘Skyfall’. So it sort of fell out of the sky, actually. And I never thought that that would end up as the title of the movie. But it obviously struck a chord. But if we’d thought the name of the house would be the name of the film, and the name of the song…”

    Purvis: “We’d have talked about it a little bit longer.”

    Wade: “And maybe have done a three-syllable house name. Like Manderley – that’s pretty good, actually.”

    Purvis:
    “Yeah. It’s the first two syllable Bond title, actually. Some people find that interesting (laughs).”


    The premise of the film's third act and the name Skyfall (originally Snowfell, the name of a hill) are both stolen from the final Richard Hannay adventure novel by John Buchan, The Island of Sheep. You can read more about the similarities at the excellent James Bond Memes blog:

    http://jamesbondmemes.blogspot.com/2016/11/skyfall-home-alone-or-john-buchan.html

    Buchan's writing was admired by Fleming and no doubt on his mind when he was developing the early Bond novels.

    Purvis & Wade -- who admitted to taking elements from Buchan in the book Some Kind of Hero -- ran out of ideas and went back to Fleming's literary influences.
  • 00Agent00Agent #InCaryWeTrust
    edited August 15 Posts: 4,437
    I agree with your Initial post Pierce2Daniel, i would only like to add to the chapel scene, and M's death, that it's supposed to be his emotional resolve to his trauma.

    Skyfall sets this up beautifully, by letting us know early on that Bond has 'unresolved childhood trauma', mainly manifesting in rejecting Authority figures, which could also be seen as rejecting parent figures.

    The third chapter of the film works like a slow retreat back in to his subconcious and his early childhood. First we go back to his childhood home, in the unfolding action, we go through the Tunnels in which Bond dealt with his parent's death when he was a little boy.

    As Kincade said:
    "The night I told him his parents had
    died, he hid in here for two days.
    When he did come out...
    he wasn't a boy anymore."


    Which would basically mean he bottled up his hurt and feelings of being left behind (by his parents) and never confronted them again.

    After the Tunnels, the next part is running through the murky dark, basically exploring a part of your subconcious which now feels like unexplored territory you have to go through, in order to find the one pivotal root of your emotional trauma which manifests in this eery chapel and is beautifully highlighted by the quick shot of the gravestone with his parents name on it. This is the one Moment in Bond's life that he has shut out, and never confronted or dealt with before.

    Which is mainly the Emotion of grief and letting go. When he griefs for M, who shows him affection in her last Moment, it's basically Bond allowing himself to grief for his parents for the first time.

    There is saddness in M's death, but it is also strangely cathartic, especially in the context of the next scenes. There is a sense of new beginnings.
    Unlike for example Vespers death which felt much more Shocking and random. With M, the movie sets up early on that she is 'history'. By the end it is merely a matter of accepting it.

    What i find very cool in Craig's portrayal, and I think a lot of people miss that is, that he takes that resolve over to Spectre. Here he is overall much more relaxed and less 'tense' or shielded. He trully has a 4 movie arc, constantly evolving and changing.

    Obviously all that is just my take on it, as i have been studying psychology and these kind of emotional traumas for almost two decades now (everybody needs a hobby).

    The thing about the Craig films that i like most is that they are very subtle with this stuff, so while one Person can see a lot in them, another can just look at it as simple escapist entertainment. With Bond it is very important that he doesn't loose his mystery, so even when they try something new or give the movies some depth, they keep it very subtle.
  • Posts: 3,315
    00Agent wrote: »
    This is the one Moment in Bond's life that he has shut out, and never confronted or dealt with before.

    Which is mainly the Emotion of grief and letting go. When he griefs for M, who shows him affecting in her last Moment, it's basically Bond allowing himself to grief for his parents for the first time.

    There is saddness in M's death, but it is also strangely cathartic, especially in the context of the next scenes. There is a sense of new beginnings.

    Unlike for example Vespers death which felt much more Shocking and random. With M, the movie sets up early on that she is 'history'. By the end it is merely a matter of accepting it.

    Really terrific @00Agent ! I loved reading that interpretation.

    Returning to Skyfall, confronting his childhood trauma and then loosing his mother allowed Bond to move on whilst addressing his past issues. There is certainly something cathartic there.

    Skyfall is his original wound.

    I was also thinking about Silva's connection to Skyfall and his reasoning that it was the perfect location to kill M.

    The scene in the chapel is the only scene he has alone with M. I think the reason he has this ‘moment of clarity’ at Skyfall is that in his estimation everything has led to his solitary confrontation in the chapel. The poetic irony is surely not lost on Silva that M’s demise will take place in a church where Bond’s mother is buried.

    maxresdefault.jpg

    Silva is at his most caring and affectionate to M when he realises she is wounded. Far removed from the man who was desperately seeking revenge. However, it’s clear that his ‘mission’ is more of a devotion at this point. He ‘has’ to kill her.

    He realises in that moment that this pursuit has rotted him and he wants to die. By killing himself he can be free of this pain and find some peace. Dying with the ‘same bullet’ allows him to kill his quarrel and find tranquillity. There is an odd sentiment there as Silva probably thinks it's tender that him and M will share the same bullet as it brings them closer to together. Also, the idea of the 'Bond villain’ putting a gun to his own head is kinda wild and very unprecedented.

    Silva loves M but it’s his ‘purpose’ to kill her.
  • 00Agent00Agent #InCaryWeTrust
    edited August 15 Posts: 4,437
    Some very good points there.
    I haven't really thought that much about Silva before, but there are definitly some interesting things to ponder.

    Firstly, he and Bond are very similar in many obvious ways.
    I think it is never mentioned that he is an orphan himself, but M says that he was a "brilliant agent" and another time she says "orpahns always made the best recruits", so i think everyone can draw their own conclusions from there.

    Silva and Bond are basically like brothers fighting over the affection of their (M)other.
    Silva is in many ways an evil twin to Bond.

    Both of them have a weird love-hate relationship with M due to early childhood trauma and the extreme hurt that this brought with it. They want and need approval from their surrogate mother, and are willing to die for her, but at the same time they must trully hate the dependency they have of her. It becomes a push-pull kind of thing, needing her but wanting to get away from her as well.

    Both are flamboyant and extravagant, and driven to be the best at what they do, to compensate for their perceived shortcomings (mainly lack of emotional support).

    Both of them have a similar way of dealing with the women in their lifes, and their inability to form close relationships, as shown in the Severine execution scene. Here Silva makes a point that he doesn't really care for other people in his life, everyone is replaceable. Bond reacts in a similar but much less cold manner. His "waste of good scotch" is similar to his "the bitch is dead" but with him we feel there is more hurt and anger underneath that he tries to cover up. With Silva it's pure indifference. He is much more corrupted.

    Both Silva and Bond have been betrayed by M in Skyfall, but Bond's betrayal was not as personal and he is able to resolve the issue, when M explains to him that she didn't wanna do it but saw no other option. They are able to reconcile, and they really need each other anyway. Silva gets the short end of the stick, rotting away in a chinese prison and trying to kill himself. Though he did hack the chinese on his own, tying to make money for himself. So again, he is more corrupted.

    When Silva comes back, there is nothing but hatred and revenge fueling him.

    When he confronts M, it really plays out more like an accusation "why didn't you love me!?" Again there is this desperate need for approval from a mother that these guys never actually expirienced.

    In that moment he realizes that he has been so obsessed with his idea of revenge for her betrayal, and killing her, that actually achieving his goal would leave nothing but a void in his life, so he might as well kill himself too. Without her, there is nothing in his life left.

    For Bond the chapel scene means that he is finally able to let go and accept.
    To him it means a new beginning.

    I love how M is always so confused about all of that. Imagine being the surrogate mother to all these agents her whole career, constantly thinking "wtf is wrong with these guys?

    All of these themes are deeply Fleming by the way, as Fleming himself was battling with mommy issues, due to a very dominat, overprotective single mother, and consequent relationship problems his whole life. And it's visible in his work.
  • BondAficionadoBondAficionado Former IMDBer
    Posts: 1,626
    00Agent wrote: »
    When Silva comes back, there is nothing but hatred and revenge fueling him.

    When he confronts M, it really plays out more like an accusation "why didn't you love me!?" Again there is this desperate need for approval from a mother that these guys never actually expirienced.

    In that moment he realizes that he has been so obsessed with his idea of revenge for her betrayal, and killing her, that actually achieving his goal would leave nothing but a void in his life, so he might as well kill himself too. Without her, there is nothing in his life left.

    Loving this thread btw. Skyfall offers so much to unpack even to this day.

    It's also interesting that Silva initially chose life over death when captured. Being loyal to the cause he wouldn't speak, but instead accepted torture in order to protect M. Only once he discovers that she herself had betrayed him does he chose death and bite the cyanide capsule. For Silva, being rejected by the sole mother-like figure in his life, but also the one person with authority he respected pushed him over the edge. It was worse than the torture, hence the cyanide. Then as the capsule fails him, just as M failed him before, it ironically spawns new life into him: a purpose, a drive, to seek revenge by first humiliating and tormenting her, before hunting her down and making her pay the ultimate sacrifice for her rejection of him. And like you pointed out this revenge is his sole drive in whatever life he has left in him and finishing the job would leave him empty and without purpose. So killing them together would solve both of his problems at once and free them both — just like Silva tells M when handing her the weapon.

    The reason he might have given her the choice to pull the trigger was to perhaps have the last laugh so to speak because it would have proven that she had actually thought on her sins and come to realize that she didn't deserve to live based on what she did to him. It would've told Silva that she had felt even the tiniest of guilt for betraying him all those years ago. And Silva definitely wanted her to feel guilty and regret her mistake this whole time. After all, it's why he needed to confront her and stare into her eyes/soul "one last time" to see if she felt anything for him. During the interrogation scene M obviously showed no emotion, knowing well that it's what he would want. At that point in time she would've still believed that handing him over was the right thing to do, but after all of Silva's mind games and seeing her negative impact on others close to her, M might've pulled the trigger had Bond not shown up.
  • 00Agent00Agent #InCaryWeTrust
    edited August 15 Posts: 4,437
    00Agent wrote: »
    When Silva comes back, there is nothing but hatred and revenge fueling him.

    When he confronts M, it really plays out more like an accusation "why didn't you love me!?" Again there is this desperate need for approval from a mother that these guys never actually expirienced.

    In that moment he realizes that he has been so obsessed with his idea of revenge for her betrayal, and killing her, that actually achieving his goal would leave nothing but a void in his life, so he might as well kill himself too. Without her, there is nothing in his life left.

    Loving this thread btw. Skyfall offers so much to unpack even to this day.

    It's also interesting that Silva initially chose life over death when captured. Being loyal to the cause he wouldn't speak, but instead accepted torture in order to protect M. Only once he discovers that she herself had betrayed him does he chose death and bite the cyanide capsule. For Silva, being rejected by the sole mother-like figure in his life, but also the one person with authority he respected pushed him over the edge. It was worse than the torture, hence the cyanide. Then as the capsule fails him, just as M failed him before, it ironically spawns new life into him: a purpose, a drive, to seek revenge by first humiliating and tormenting her, before hunting her down and making her pay the ultimate sacrifice for her rejection of him. And like you pointed out this revenge is his sole drive in whatever life he has left in him and finishing the job would leave him empty and without purpose. So killing them together would solve both of his problems at once and free them both — just like Silva tells M when handing her the weapon.

    The reason he might have given her the choice to pull the trigger was to perhaps have the last laugh so to speak because it would have proven that she had actually thought on her sins and come to realize that she didn't deserve to live based on what she did to him. It would've told Silva that she had felt even the tiniest of guilt for betraying him all those years ago. And Silva definitely wanted her to feel guilty and regret her mistake this whole time. After all, it's why he needed to confront her and stare into her eyes/soul "one last time" to see if she felt anything for him. During the interrogation scene M obviously showed no emotion, knowing well that it's what he would want. At that point in time she would've still believed that handing him over was the right thing to do, but after all of Silva's mind games and seeing her negative impact on others close to her, M might've pulled the trigger had Bond not shown up.

    That is a Very good observation!
    Can't wait to watch that film again with that in mind. I wanna see how Judi played it, because she always seemed so helpless and confused in that scene, but you might be right. Maybe she started buying into the mindgames.
  • BondAficionadoBondAficionado Former IMDBer
    Posts: 1,626
    I might watch it later this week myself. I'll definitely come back to this thread as I'm sure there will be lots more to discuss. :)
  • ShardlakeShardlake Leeds, West Yorkshire, England
    Posts: 3,473
    Some great insights here guys, I've not seen SF since just before the release of SPECTRE and I'm saving my next watch to the Skyfall in concert screening I'm going in December at Bridgewater Hall in Manchester.

    I've always loved this film from day one and always have a blast with it, top 5.

    I missed CR in concert but I'm chuffed to bits to be going to SF.

    I do think it is the film of this era that has the most layers and it reveals itself more you watch it.

    I'll definitely have some of these insights in my head the next time I see it.
  • edited August 15 Posts: 3,315
    00Agent wrote: »
    When he confronts M, it really plays out more like an accusation "why didn't you love me!?" Again there is this desperate need for approval from a mother that these guys never actually expirienced.

    In that moment he realizes that he has been so obsessed with his idea of revenge for her betrayal, and killing her, that actually achieving his goal would leave nothing but a void in his life, so he might as well kill himself too. Without her, there is nothing in his life left.

    For Bond the chapel scene means that he is finally able to let go and accept.
    To him it means a new beginning.

    Once again, amazing work @00Agent.

    Really adore this highlighted passage. So well explained.

    Silva seemingly has this moment of clarity at that precise moment. It's so weirdly creepy as Bardem portrays the moment essentially as an act of mercy. Which is so contrary to what the rest of the film is about.
    00Agent wrote: »
    I love how M is always so confused about all of that. Imagine being the surrogate mother to all these agents her whole career, constantly thinking "wtf is wrong with these guys?

    This is key.

    M never signed up for the role as anyone's 'surrogate mum'. There's a theory in psychology of 'transference' and it's clear that these maladjusted young men that MI6 recruit are looking for avenues to express their emotions.

    When presented with a stern female figure of authority, they invest maternal feelings into the relationship. In Bond's case, it fills the void of having lost his mother at a young age. Which of course brings us back to Skyfall Lodge, his family home, where he takes M to protect her............

    giphy.gif

    M dying and Bond grieving for her, allows 007 to move on finally....Skyfall was once something negative for him and now (in a weird way) is more positive and optimistic.

    00Agent wrote: »
    00Agent wrote: »
    When Silva comes back, there is nothing but hatred and revenge fueling him.

    When he confronts M, it really plays out more like an accusation "why didn't you love me!?" Again there is this desperate need for approval from a mother that these guys never actually expirienced.

    In that moment he realizes that he has been so obsessed with his idea of revenge for her betrayal, and killing her, that actually achieving his goal would leave nothing but a void in his life, so he might as well kill himself too. Without her, there is nothing in his life left.

    Loving this thread btw. Skyfall offers so much to unpack even to this day.

    It's also interesting that Silva initially chose life over death when captured. Being loyal to the cause he wouldn't speak, but instead accepted torture in order to protect M. Only once he discovers that she herself had betrayed him does he chose death and bite the cyanide capsule. For Silva, being rejected by the sole mother-like figure in his life, but also the one person with authority he respected pushed him over the edge. It was worse than the torture, hence the cyanide. Then as the capsule fails him, just as M failed him before, it ironically spawns new life into him: a purpose, a drive, to seek revenge by first humiliating and tormenting her, before hunting her down and making her pay the ultimate sacrifice for her rejection of him. And like you pointed out this revenge is his sole drive in whatever life he has left in him and finishing the job would leave him empty and without purpose. So killing them together would solve both of his problems at once and free them both — just like Silva tells M when handing her the weapon.

    The reason he might have given her the choice to pull the trigger was to perhaps have the last laugh so to speak because it would have proven that she had actually thought on her sins and come to realize that she didn't deserve to live based on what she did to him. It would've told Silva that she had felt even the tiniest of guilt for betraying him all those years ago. And Silva definitely wanted her to feel guilty and regret her mistake this whole time. After all, it's why he needed to confront her and stare into her eyes/soul "one last time" to see if she felt anything for him. During the interrogation scene M obviously showed no emotion, knowing well that it's what he would want. At that point in time she would've still believed that handing him over was the right thing to do, but after all of Silva's mind games and seeing her negative impact on others close to her, M might've pulled the trigger had Bond not shown up.

    That is a Very good observation!
    Can't wait to watch that film again with that in mind. I wanna see how Judi played it, because she always seemed so helpless and confused in that scene, but you might be right. Maybe she started buying into the mindgames.

    I think M is both 'helpless' and 'confused' when Silva confronts her.

    After all, M is 78 and Silva is 43. Yes, she's a stern spymaster, but she also a frail old woman outside her comfort zone. It's all an act and part of the job for M. She's overpowered by Silva and knows it. She is very definition of 'helpless' at that point. She never thought this moment with Silva would occur. She thought Bond would rescue her.

    @00Agent very interested in your take behind Bond destorying his family home and his glance back at it here:

    Skyfall-1642.jpg

    I think he's burnt down the house that created him. He's destroyed a part of his history. His legacy. I'm unsure if he feel cathartic or serene. But the fact he looks back when M is in mortal danger suggests that he's feeling something.
  • 00Agent00Agent #InCaryWeTrust
    edited August 15 Posts: 4,437
    Thanks, @Pierce2Daniel
    And It never actually dawned on me that Bond deliberately chooses to take his surrogate mother to his childhood home to protect her... Which in itself is almost self explanatory, but now i wonder if he is aware of it.

    I need to rewatch the film and see if there is some hint, or some Moment in the film where Bond has a realization of 'i have to do this', or if he's just guided by unconcious desires. This might also give clues to your final question @Pierce2Daniel it's a matter of how aware he is of what he's doing.

    But personally, even on my first viewing, i found that scene of him blowing up the home very ballsy. Most people, with severe depressions and traumas have a hard time letting go. A lot of people rather dwell in their misery (like Silva), and Skyfall symbolises some sort of misery to Bond. First he choose to abandon the place, and when he decides to come back, he has no compunction of blowing it all to smitherines. Bond, throughout the whole finale is very ready to let go. Which makes me thing he planned this all on some level.
    The look on his face in that above image feels like a mix of satisfaction and disbelief that he really just did that.

    But maybe that's just the way i see it. I like this scenario because it shows that Bond is in control of his feelings on some level. Arrogance and self awareness seldom go hand in hand, but he handles it pretty well. :)
    I will keep an eye out for that on other elements when I rewatch the film, though the next time i'll watch SF will be at Royal Albert Hall on James Bond Day. Can't hardly wait :)
  • edited August 15 Posts: 3,315
    00Agent wrote: »
    Thanks, @Pierce2Daniel
    And It never actually dawned on me that Bond deliberately chooses to take his surrogate mother to his childhood home to protect her... Which in itself is almost self explanatory, but now i wonder if he is aware of it.

    I need to rewatch the film and see if there is some hint, or some Moment in the film where Bond has a realization of 'i have to do this', or if he's just guided by unconcious desires. This might also give clues to your final question @Pierce2Daniel it's a matter of how aware he is of what he's doing.

    I will keep an eye out for that on other elements when I rewatch the film, though the next time i'll watch SF will be at Royal Albert Hall on James Bond Day. Can't hardly wait :)

    I think it's less Bond's decision and more the decision of Sam Mendes.

    But in a way, that's the point. I think Mendes was trying to tell a story about Bond dealing with his childhood trauma and seeing M as his surrogate mother. When under attack, he tries to protect her and takes her to his family home. It's one of the reasons Silva says 'Of course, I had to kill you here" as it is the place Bond's mother is buried.

    I don't think Bond is totally conscious of the decision's he's making though. But Sam Mendes is....



    Listen to him speak at 7:00 minute mark - For Mendes, they had the idea of 'killing M' and from there the impetus was to see how far they could push the relationship between Bond and M. The answer appears to be to explore the 'mother' dimension more and its connection to his childhood.
  • 00Agent00Agent #InCaryWeTrust
    edited August 17 Posts: 4,437
    Loved that interview with Mendes, couldn't help but watch it all through (suprised to see Greengrass there though) There were many intresting things to digest, one of them that i noticed specifically was when Mendes said he liked the idea of M being the only Person that Bond would invite into his private life like that, see behind his curtain so to speak, and then she dies and takes all those secrets with her at the end.

    That just underlines the fact how intimate Skyfall is in a way. Because we are dealing with Bond in a way we never have before, even though things are mostly hinted at and there is still a lot of mystery left, so we can have a thread like this and discuss it ad nauseum. :)

    To me personally, i look at Skyfall as a movie that is about James Bond conquering some of his Personal demons. To me Skyfall is a success story (It's my second favorite Bond). Sure he is still a conflicted, somewhat broken guy with an intense job, but in Skyfall he achives a personal victory.

    It's my personal take on it, and it paints Bond as someone who is always in control. But that is part of the fun of that character that he is always on-atop of the Situation and in control of his destiny. In this case he is in control of his emotions (as far as a human being can be, who had traumatic expiriences). I can very much relate to that.

    Craig had played Bond as a self aware guy who doesn't like talking about himself from the very start. He plays him like someone who knows he's conflicted but chooses to ignore it.
    Just remember the dialogue with Vesper "If you do this job long enough there won't be enough soul left to salvage"

    M calling him "arrogant and self aware".
    He always stays cool when people confront him with himself "You went to Oxford or wherever and believe people naturally Dress like that, but you wear it with such disdain..." or him talking about
    "Don't forget my pathetic love of country" as well as him having "more perspective" after getting away from it all for a while In SF.

    That's what i love so much about the Craig era in general. His self awareness, these little character bits. He goes deeper into the psychology of the character than anyone before him.

    I very much expect that in B25 as well and I can't wait to see where they want to take him next.
  • Posts: 3,315
    00Agent wrote: »
    Loved that interview with Mendes, couldn't help but watch it all through (suprised to see Greengrass there though) There were many intresting things to digest, one of them that i noticed specifically was when Mendes said he liked the idea of M being the only Person that Bond would invite into his private life like that, see behind his curtain so to speak, and then she dies and takes all those secrets with her at the end.

    That just underlines the fact how intimate Skyfall is in a way. Because we are dealing with Bond in a way we never have before, even though things are mostly hinted at and there is still a lot of mystery left, so we can have a thread like this and discuss it ad nauseum. :)

    To me personally, i look at Skyfall as a movie that is about James Bond conquering some of his Personal demons. To me Skyfall is a success story (It's my second favorite Bond). Sure he is still a conflicted, somewhat broken guy with an intense job, but in Skyfall he achives a personal victory.

    It's my personal take on it, and it paints Bond as someone who is always in control. But that is part of the fun of that character that he is always on-atop of the Situation and in control of his destiny. In this case he is in control of his emotions (as far as a human being can be, who had traumatic expiriences). I can very much relate to that.

    Craig had played Bond as a self aware guy who doesn't like talking about himself from the very start. He plays him like someone who knows he's conflicted but chooses to ignore it.
    Just remember the dialogue with Vesper "If you do this job long enough there won't be enough soul left to salvage"

    M calling him "arrogant and self aware".
    He always stays cool when people confront him with himself "You went to Oxford or wherever and believe people naturally Dress like that, but you wear it with such disdain..." or him talking about
    "Don't forget my pathetic love of country" as well as him having "more perspective" after getting away from it all for a while In SF.

    That's what i love so much about the Craig era in general. His self awareness, these little character bits. He goes deeper into the psychology of the character than anyone before him.

    I very much expect that in B25 as well and I can't wait to see where they want to take him next.

    Brilliant, again!

    I suppose SF is the closest example in the series of Bond having an existential crisis. He's questioning his relevancy and exploring his childhood trauma. I found this interesting quote from Sam Mendes:

    Sam Mendes: One of the things I was trying to do was ask, “What’s the point of secret intelligence? What’s the point of MI6?” Therefore, what’s the point of Bond, and therefore, what’s the point of Bond movies? There’s an inquiry into the existence of Bond movies – that’s what’s going on! If you really study it, that’s what’s going on: “Well, why are you still here?”

    What we had in the movie, as strident as possible, was the reason not to have MI6, to not have Bond, so we could argue for it. Silva himself says, “England, the Empire, MI6 – you’re living in a ruin. It’s over. Finished. What are you doing clinging to this notion of nation?”

    And Helen says, the ideas of spies and espionage is outmoded, a joke. But M is able to mount a response to that, as is Bond. But the difference is that M does it verbally and Bond uses action. That’s the big difference.


    Bond is feeling irrelevant and redundant. He's an old dog in a new world. Naturally, he's struggling to reconcile his own relevancy in a world that keeps reminding him how dated and unnecessary he is. However, by the end, he's able to demonstrate why he's needed and the value he can offer. His methods may not be totally in sync with the 'new school' of thought, but there is an argument to made for his existence.

    Another interesting point that I'd like @00Agent opinion on is Blofeld. We know that SKyfall Lodge was the place that created Bond. However, it was essentially Bond who created Blofeld. It was Bond who set Oberhauser on the track to become the leader of SPECTRE. Blofled even thanks Bond for setting him on this path.

    giphy.gif

    Therefore, Bond created his own worst enemy. All the 'pain' he has suffered in his life is a result of his own doing. This is all very reminiscent of the line from Tim Burton's Batman when Batman says to the Joker: "I made you, you made me first".

  • 00Agent00Agent #InCaryWeTrust
    edited August 20 Posts: 4,437
    Thanks again, and that's a very good question about Blofeld @Pierce2Daniel.
    I think that's what they were going for with this incarnation of Blofed, that he was somehow created by Bond's actions. Or at least they are linked together in a very personal way.

    I actually haven't figured Spectre out fully to this day, sometimes i feel it is almost too subtle with it's hints so it's hard to decipher the meainings, so i was hoping someone else could help me with that ;)

    Well, maybe we can figure it out together.

    I remember that Mendes said in an interview that he wanted more time on the script, because Spectre had a much more complicated structure than Skyfall, which was a straightforward story. But EoN said no, so sadly i think they never fully realized their vision.

    I also remember that he said Skyfall was about Mothers and Spectre was more about Fathers. So the first parallel that springs to my mind, is that while Bond fights with Silva over the affection of their Mother (M) in Skyfall, Spectre is a little bit more about Bond and Blofelds rivalry over their Father. Even though he's dead already, it is made very clear that they had a huge rivalry over him at some point. You could even say that their father is the reason why they have their rivalry in the first place.

    And then you have Madeleine which is the daughter of an assassin as well, and that leads her straight into the arms of Bond (and back to Blofeld) so at the end you have a triangle of characters that are all tied together by their fathers and their broken relationships.

    i will try looking into this a bit deeper later maybe someone can add something in the meantime.
  • 00Agent wrote: »
    Thanks again, and that's a very good question about Blofeld @Pierce2Daniel.
    I think that's what they were going for with this incarnation of Blofed, that he was somehow created by Bond's actions. Or at least they are linked together in a very personal way.

    I actually haven't figured Spectre out fully to this day, sometimes i feel it is almost too subtle with it's hints so it's hard to decipher the meainings, so i was hoping someone else could help me with that ;)

    Well, maybe we can figure it out together.

    I remember that Mendes said in an interview that he wanted more time on the script, because Spectre had a much more complicated structure than Skyfall, which was a straightforward story. But EoN said no, so sadly i think they never fully realized their vision.

    I also remember that he said Skyfall was about Mothers and Spectre was more about Fathers. So the first parallel that springs to my mind, is that while Bond fights with Silva over the affection of their Mother (M) in Skyfall, Spectre is a little bit more about Bond and Blofelds rivalry over their Father. Even though he's dead already, it is made very clear that they had a huge rivalry over him at some point. You could even say that their father is the reason why they have their rivalry in the first place.

    And then you have Madeleine which is the daughter of an assassin as well, and that leads her straight into the arms of Bond (and back to Blofeld) so at the end you have a triangle of characters that are all tied together by their fathers and their broken relationships.


    i will try looking into this a bit deeper later maybe someone can add something in the meantime.

    This is a very good point.

    I think the notion of 'fathers' was certainly on the mind of Sam Mendes. Sadly, the idea wasn't fleshed out enough in the script. So we have a fairly half-baked theme.

    But the rivalry over a father created both 007 and Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
    spectre2015-0638.jpg

    Simultaneously, Madeleine's father draws her into Bond's world.
    spectre2015-1707.jpg

    I think Mr White is supposed to be a cruel reflection of Bond. An old forgotten assassin. The irony of course is that Madeleine ran away from an assassin to escape this life - only to end up in the arms of another.

    I hope this idea is explored in NTTD.
  • 00Agent00Agent #InCaryWeTrust
    edited September 29 Posts: 4,437
    There is a lot they can add to Spectre, with NTTD. It's almost inevitable that they will.

    And i don't mean that in some stupid retroactive way like undoing Brofeld.

    What i mean is that i think SP biggest flaw is it's mystery and lack of definition in some areas. I think they were struggling a bit with how much to reveal and how much to leave open.

    We still don't know what Spectre is after for example. Most would assume "world domination" but this is not your grand daddy's Spectre, this is a highly efficient global conglomerate. What do these guys want and how are they planing to achieve it? You can't really have a threat if you don't know what your bad guys are after. 9 eyes is just a means to an end.

    Same goes for Blofed, and this bothers me the most. The character is absolutely not defnied in terms of motivation... what is he after? What is his goal and personal motivation? It is not just not explored but we even get mixed signals.

    On the one hand we would assume after the torture sequence that Blofeld is angry at Bond because his father liked Bond more than him, but Blofeld is quick to point out that it helped him on his path to become who he is now. So no hard feelings? So it's all just purely business? Why make them step brothers in the first place then?

    The other head scratcher is the fact that Bond disfigures him greatly in the following explosion. Now every other film would use that kind of stuff to give the film some emotional punch, Blofeld is being out for revenge because he got disfigured badly... but nope, again he is very quick to point out that he doesn't really care and that it will heal eventually....

    On the one hand i really love that scene because it shows Blofeld as this completely indifferent, carefree maniac, almost sedated. But on the other hand it robs the character and the film of any emotional, and personal motivation.

    If he cares so little, why the hell is he even in London??? Why is he personally there to set up a trap for Bond? It makes no sense. The character is poorly defined. And the step brother angle is the least of his problems.

    My assumption of why some of that happend is, that they simply clashed with trying to do a sort of old school Bond villain who is kindly polite and well mannered, and the fact that this is a new kind of villain who is driven by a personal angle and revenge. More back story might have explained some of that better.


    So, to get back to my initial point, i am hoping that they will define him more in NTTD. I think that this is the intention behind bringing him back. If they give him some clarity as a character and what he is after (and Spectre as a whole), it will inevitably change our view of SP, because we will watch it with new eyes and a more definied picture of who these characters are. And hopefully Spectre will become a better film in the process.

    They don't have to force any of that as well, they just need to write a great narrative that is naturally flowing and defines the characters better that are coming over from the previous film. They could also greatly improve the relationship between Madeline and Bond this way, as it was underdeveloped too.
  • MalloryMallory Are you ready to get back to work?
    Posts: 685
    @00Agent

    I completely agree on the whole “nine eyes” thing. I get why Spectre would want to have access to intelligence gathering, but what for? There needs to be a “as soon as we gain control we will nuke Britain” or something like that so its a threat.
  • matt_umatt_u better known as Mr. Roark
    edited September 29 Posts: 1,381
    00Agent wrote: »
    Thanks again, and that's a very good question about Blofeld @Pierce2Daniel.
    I think that's what they were going for with this incarnation of Blofed, that he was somehow created by Bond's actions. Or at least they are linked together in a very personal way.

    I actually haven't figured Spectre out fully to this day, sometimes i feel it is almost too subtle with it's hints so it's hard to decipher the meainings, so i was hoping someone else could help me with that ;)

    Well, maybe we can figure it out together.

    I remember that Mendes said in an interview that he wanted more time on the script, because Spectre had a much more complicated structure than Skyfall, which was a straightforward story. But EoN said no, so sadly i think they never fully realized their vision.

    I also remember that he said Skyfall was about Mothers and Spectre was more about Fathers. So the first parallel that springs to my mind, is that while Bond fights with Silva over the affection of their Mother (M) in Skyfall, Spectre is a little bit more about Bond and Blofelds rivalry over their Father. Even though he's dead already, it is made very clear that they had a huge rivalry over him at some point. You could even say that their father is the reason why they have their rivalry in the first place.

    And then you have Madeleine which is the daughter of an assassin as well, and that leads her straight into the arms of Bond (and back to Blofeld) so at the end you have a triangle of characters that are all tied together by their fathers and their broken relationships.


    i will try looking into this a bit deeper later maybe someone can add something in the meantime.

    This is a very good point.

    I think the notion of 'fathers' was certainly on the mind of Sam Mendes. Sadly, the idea wasn't fleshed out enough in the script. So we have a fairly half-baked theme.

    But the rivalry over a father created both 007 and Ernst Stavro Blofeld.

    I totally agree regarding Bond facing his childhood demons in SF and, in the end, being able to come to terms with all the pain and the trauma. The death of his surrogate mother just by the grave of his parents gives him the chance to come to terms with all those losses. The destruction of the Skyfall mansion is also quite symbolic.

    But regarding Oberhauser I see things differently. Bond by the end of SF made peace with his past in most ways and as a consequence in SP feels less concerned about all those revelations from the past. He doesn't seem so interested in Hannes death and frankly, even if this man helped him and taught him when he was a kid it was just for two winters. The "father being responsible" angle works not with Bond, but just with Blofeld and Swann. Especially Blofeld, following the archetype of Edipus, in some ways, who is the one that was really created by his father's lack of love and esteem, since it's made pretty clear by Blofeld's envy and the cuckoo metaphor that young James was the son Hannes always wanted but never had.
  • WalecsWalecs On Her Majesty's Secret Service
    Posts: 2,580
    00Agent wrote: »
    There is a lot they can add to Spectre, with NTTD. It's almost inevitable that they will.

    And i don't mean that in some stupid retroactive way like undoing Brofeld.

    What i mean is that i think SP biggest flaw is it's mystery and lack of definition in some areas. I think they were struggling a bit with how much to reveal and how much to leave open.

    We still don't know what Spectre is after for example. Most would assume "world domination" but this is not your grand daddy's Spectre, this is a highly efficient global conglomerate. What do these guys want and how are they planing to achieve it? You can't really have a threat if you don't know what your bad guys are after. 9 eyes is just a means to an end.

    Same goes for Blofed, and this bothers me the most. The character is absolutely not defnied in terms of motivation... what is he after? What is his goal and personal motivation? It is not just not explored but we even get mixed signals.

    On the one hand we would assume after the torture sequence that Blofeld is angry at Bond because his father liked Bond more than him, but Blofeld is quick to point out that it helped him on his path to become who he is now. So no hard feelings? So it's all just purely business? Why make them step brothers in the first place then?

    The other head scratcher is the fact that Bond disfigures him greatly in the following explosion. Now every other film would use that kind of stuff to give the film some emotional punch, Blofeld is being out for revenge because he got disfigured badly... but nope, again he is very quick to point out that he doesn't really care and that it will heal eventually....

    On the one hand i really love that scene because it shows Blofeld as this completely indifferent, carefree maniac, almost sedated. But on the other hand it robs the character and the film of any emotional, and personal motivation.

    If he cares so little, why the hell is he even in London??? Why is he personally there to set up a trap for Bond? It makes no sense. The character is poorly defined. And the step brother angle is the least of his problems.

    My assumption of why some of that happend is, that they simply clashed with trying to do a sort of old school Bond villain who is kindly polite and well mannered, and the fact that this is a new kind of villain who is driven by a personal angle and revenge. More back story might have explained some of that better.


    So, to get back to my initial point, i am hoping that they will define him more in NTTD. I think that this is the intention behind bringing him back. If they give him some clarity as a character and what he is after (and Spectre as a whole), it will inevitably change our view of SP, because we will watch it with new eyes and a more definied picture of who these characters are. And hopefully Spectre will become a better film in the process.

    They don't have to force any of that as well, they just need to write a great narrative that is naturally flowing and defines the characters better that are coming over from the previous film. They could also greatly improve the relationship between Madeline and Bond this way, as it was underdeveloped too.

    +1000
  • 00Agent00Agent #InCaryWeTrust
    edited October 1 Posts: 4,437
    Mallory wrote: »
    @00Agent

    I completely agree on the whole “nine eyes” thing. I get why Spectre would want to have access to intelligence gathering, but what for? There needs to be a “as soon as we gain control we will nuke Britain” or something like that so its a threat.

    I think a neat idea would have been that Spectre was planning to infiltrate all intelligence agencies, spread misinformation to each of them and start world war three so that they can make a huge profit in the process. I think that would be very topical as well.

    As for Blofeld, since he sees himself as a genius visionary (though it is never explained why exactly, or what his goal is) i was thinking he could be similar to Stromberg or Drax, and planing to rebuild civilisation from the ashes of WW3 in his image, through his network and technology. "Out of horror... beauty"

    I didn't spend too much time on this though, it's just a 'first draft' sort of idea ;)
  • Posts: 588
    No, IExpectYouToDie.
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