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I’ll say he wouldn’t have worked in CR, but SkyFall, SPECTRE, and NTTD? Perhaps. The real answer is we don’t really know. I know that it’s one thing not to like his portrayal, that’s something I completely understand. I mean, I don’t really like the casting of Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool, because I’m not a fan of Ryan Reynolds. It’s off topic, but I’m not going to say I don’t understand where some people come from when they talk about Brosnan. But I fundamentally disagree with the notions that he isn’t a good actor, isn’t masculine, or suave enough. I just don’t think they’re accurate.
I’ll say that he’s definitely made some poor career choices, but so have a lot of the other Bonds (I mean Zaradoz anyone???), but Pierce was excellent as Bond for what he was given, could anyone honestly expect Craig, Dalton, Connery, or the others to navigate those scripts any better than Pierce did? No way, not with things like Heartbeats being stopped through meditation, and CGI Kite-Surfing. Like I said previously, to push all the blame on Brosnan while letting the filmmakers off just doesn’t seem that fair to me, and that sentiment should change. Just because Barbara, Michael, and the rest of EON made up for their poor handling of Brosnan’s films with Craig’s, does not mean that they should be let off the hook for the late 90’s. I understand being disappointed by the direction of the series during Brosnan’s tenure, but it’s not because of Brosnan.
I just feel like Brosnan is too much of an easy target, and I’ll always defend the underdog. I’d do the same if this was any of the other actors, it just so happens that Brosnan was my first Bond, my 2nd favorite Bond, and the man just exemplifies Bond to me. The way I look at it, all of the Bond actors have been excellent casting choices, even George Lazenby. I just love this series so much and to me, it doesn’t matter if it’s a Brosnan film, a Moore Film, a Craig film, a Connery film, a Dalton film, or OHMSS. I love James Bond, and as long as it’s not Never Say Never Again, I’d drop everything I do in a heartbeat to watch any of these films, and their actors. Having said, I hope nobody on this thread confuses my passion for anything else besides that. I’m welcoming of all opinions, just as I’d hope some of you would be welcoming of my points as well. I love this forum so I’m not trying to come across as brash. Just need to defend my guy Pierce from time to time.
If GE was the best script Brosnan received, he was by far the weakest of the lead and supporting actors.
He was overwhelmed and overshadowed by Bean, Famke, Dench, Coltrane, Gottfried John….. I walked out of GE and thought Bond was so small in this film.
IMO Brosnan was best in The 4th Protocol. The other films you mentioned, I feel like I’m watching the same guy from TND— which incidentally was my favourite performance from his Bond films.
I’ll agree to disagree on this one; I find him a charming, yet limited actor. I never felt he ever went too deep into the skin of another character.
No worries @peter, I’ll never try to convince anyone my opinions are the correct and only opinions, because that’s just wrong. I’ll defend them to the last, but all I can do is explain my point of view. I always enjoy our conversations even if we have differing opinions.
What sucks is I literally have no friends in real life who enjoy Bond as much as I do, so to come to a forum and be able to discuss my thoughts and opinions with all of you is something I’ll always gladly do, even if I sometimes feel like I’m fighting an uphill battle with Brosnan. I just love discussing Bond with people who have just as, if not more passion than I do.
And I admire the passion and intelligence you bring to discussions. Plus you’re respectful of others and their differing views.
And I may never see what you do in Brosnan, but I still read the praise you, and others, give to him. You’ve at least helped me see another perspective!!
And, although I have never truly clicked with his performances (and to be honest, I’m even more harsh on him now, than at any other time), I absolutely believe he is still an important part of the franchise because I don’t believe any other actor at the time could have resurrected James Bond, as he did.
I mean, as much as I love Brosnan, I also wish Dalton could’ve came back too, I think he would’ve been just as great in Goldeneye as Pierce was, and I’ll also admit that my views of Brosnan are driven by the nostalgia of watching him as the very first Bond I saw, and playing as his Bond in so many of those early 2000’s video games, but I definitely hear ya there. I remember watching a news report from 1995 where they were talking about the “betting odds” for who’d play Bond before Brosnan got the part. I literally remember seeing Michael Keaton amongst the odds and feeling so puzzled. Now I love Michael Keaton, he’s probably my favorite Batman, but I can’t picture Keaton as Bond, especially not saying “C’Mon Trevelyn, you want to get nuts? Let’s get Nuts!”
They're all vastly different both in style and in drama, indicative of EON finding their way in terms of what stories they could tell and what they could do with the character. It was a period of trial and error. I feel if Brosnan got the scripts he was best suited for, it would have been GoldenEye x4 or TND x4 (the latter especially, as I think he's supreme levels of cool in it). And that's not what he received. He ended up with a TWINE and a DAD, which are also apples and oranges to each other in turn. But nonetheless, Brosnan did his best to anchor the wildly differing films with some kind of consistency.
He did alright under the circumstances I feel. In fact, I would say Brosnan does a better job of making his Bond feel like the same person than even Connery does throughout his run. Post TB, his Bond feels like a different person at times.
Although Fleming's Bond is very much a working man, blue collar in the 50s and 60s was very different from blue collar in the 90s and 2000s. What was considered effete or snobbish during the Brosnan age- being very well-mannered and immaculately-dressed all the time- would have probably been the norm for even middle class people during Fleming's time.
There was a huge decline in societal standards after the 60s cultural revolution, but Bond mostly stayed above that until we got to the Craig age and Bond became more indicative of the current time and place: wearing jeans, t-shirts, henleys, etc. And I can't imagine Bond having suspicions about a rival agent due to him ordering the wrong wine during dinner like in FRWL. With Brosnan, I could imagine him having that type of awareness in this day and age.
If they keep making Bond movies that are set in our time, Bond is increasingly going to be a fish out of water. If they cast with type and get another Brosnan in the role, the movies are probably going to be more fantastical or lighthearted simply because Bond's character is at odds with the modern world. If they go against type and get another Craig in the role, the movies will probably continue the dark-and-gritty trend that's still strong.
Michael Keaton! That’s one rumour I didn’t hear, 😂.
I do love Dalton and would rather watch him over Brozz any day of the week. Brozz however, had more natural charm and charisma, something Tim lacked in the role.
Just having Brosnan cast gave new life to James Bond.
I do think he was very limited as an actor (and have always felt in all his roles, that he didn’t have the chops to go any deeper than superficial changes (no matter the film, I always see the guy from TND and vice versa), and the scripts he received reflected the limits of his characterization (why give a thinly talented actor deep material if s/he can’t execute?)
Saying that, he has an important role in keeping James Bond alive. To me, Brosnan is by far a better cheerleader for the character and understood the cultural importance of the role, than he ever was an actor who could actually pull off embodying 007.
But yes, Broz was at his peak in TND also. He makes it look effortless. Just as Roger does in TSWLM and Sean before him in TB.
Yeah. I agree with this.
In my opinion, Pierce is not a great actor, but he's good, and in certain types of roles, very good. And he's always a lot of fun to watch.
People were debating earlier about what Brosnan brought to the table as Bond, in the context of the "greatest hits of Bond" opinion that's usually mentioned around these parts. I could try to reflect on the exact mixture of traits that make his Bond uniquely his, but I don't even need to think about that. Every time you cast a different actor, you get something different. An actor might derive inspiration from those who came before him, but said inspiration is filtered through the actor's own innate style and instincts. What Pierce brought to the role of Bond is himself-- his way of talking, of walking, his body language, his voice, his voice inflections. And I love it. For example, when he says "you've had a small reversal of fortune" in TWINE, I can't imagine any other Bond delivering the line in the same way. Or his unique style of arrogance when talking with Carver. Those are just random examples.
I loved Craig in Spectre. TND is a performance in the same style. Bond being effortlessly cool indeed.
However a couple of scenes and imagery that holds up every time: his shadowy silhouette taking out the assassins at Lucia’s home and, the postcoital scene where he’s finishing dressing in a beautiful suit and bidding Lucia good bye— always gets me.
Most of the rest of the film, and Craig, we’re quite lacklustre for my eyes.
I found his urgency in the character (as well as his cool/charm) returned in NTTD (especially in Jamaica).
Another moment I love in that film. Classy, stylish and confident.
I felt that he's playing closer to the book/Fleming bond in SPECTRE, there's so many scenes where it shows:
- The Lucia Sciarra scenes
- When he interrogated Mr. White
- When he's trying to convince Madeleine to join his side after saving her from Mr. Hinx and his men in Austria.
- The L'Americain scenes
- The scene in the desert where they're waiting and when Madeleine asked what's that, Bond prepared his gun and answered: "That is a 1948 Rolls Royce Silver Wraith. (The book bond was also kind of Mr. Know It All Guy, so it really looked like it's Fleming's Bond who's in this film).
- And of course, the Tempus Fugit scene.
SPECTRE was almost like the Fleming books in tone, dialogue and Bond portrayal, but it's gone off the rails since the film introduced Blofeld as his step brother, which was not suprising, considering they're planning for this step since the 60's/70's, when Goldfinger was intended to be Blofeld's twin at one point.
I think Craig was adrift, trying to figure out why he should care about the name Blofeld even though he cares about Oberhauser's father and what happened to him.
Conversely, his scene with Blofeld in NTTD feels very over the top, almost as a correction to his underreaction to Oberhauser/Blofeld in SP. Either way, they botched Blofeld...again. It's almost as if the character defies being captured on film, like his shapeshifter nature in the novels.
Certainly I like the Savalas portrayal the best, but he's not quite Blofeld either...
It was slightly different my friend. At one point the script for DAF had Goldfinger's twin brother as the main villain and not Blofeld at all. However the idea was scrapped and Blofeld was reinstated as the baddie. They were going to cast Gert Frobe in the role.
They have mishandled Blofeld with different actors and different tones. It would be nice to see some forethought and a proper story arc with Blofeld but I doubt that is in the cards now as they have just used the character for a few films.
Back on the track of this thread, Brosnan wasn't going to win any Oscars playing Bond. His films tried to push the envelope but he got saddled with some terrible scripts. TND is a remarkable film in that they had the action pieces settled but the script was being written as the filming went. In some cases the scenes were written shortly before being shot. That would not have happened under Craig. Brosnan was a good company man and went along with things. Craig learned his lesson in QOS and as such they never again tried to get a film out in 2 years.
In general, in both SP and NTTD, I feel Craig was more "performative" than before-- more affected, if you will. It's a style that comes from his playing Bond in a more relaxed way, as if Bond was enjoying himself more than before. But I love that acting style, in its playfulness, its larger-than-life qualities, and the fact it doesn't intefere in any way with the more human, vulnerable moments, such as when Bond is barely containing his anger at Blofeld on the bridge in SP, or when he's experiencing emotional turmoil while inside the DB5 in NTTD, or when he's saying goodbye to Madeleine at the end of the same film.
I don't feel there is any substantial difference between the two performances. In fact, NTTD has plenty of moments of Bond being more performative, more colorful than in the earlier Craig films. Not only the Blofeld scene that is often mentioned in this forum, but his reaction when Madeleine tells him he can't help but look over his shoulder, or his "shall we... cut to the chase?" directed at Nomi, or "M... darling, a couple of things", or him getting into the plane and saying "okay, what have we got here", or his visit to MI6 HQ and especially his first meeting with M ("he ran a Spectre meeting in Cuba from Belmarsh"), or his little "no" when Madeleine asks him if the gun is for her, or when he is begging Safin for mercy. Even his "I miss you" at Vesper's grave has a bit of that.
I love it, just as much as his more dramatic, serious acting moments.
How do you define an "Alpha Male" ?
IMO Craig is the least masculine due to how emotional his Bond was.
Masculinity IMO is not defined by how rough or how tough a man looks. It's the mentality and how well he is able to keep emotions in check. It's more about being stoic and being able to move on quickly after an emotional or traumatic event.
But even in that sense would Craig's Bond be the least masculine? A big part of his Bond - at least from CR to SP - is that he's rather stoic and for the most part keeps his emotions in check despite all the emotional trauma he's had in his life. While the impact of Vesper's death was there throughout QOS, it wasn't a revenge story, and for the most part he was just doing his job (he never breaks down or has a moment where anger impacts his decision making in a negative way, for instance). I mean, just look at how he reacts to Solonge's death in CR. Craig's whole performance in SF especially is very insular, and much of what he's thinking during certain moments (ie. when he's looking out at the landscape and M asks him about his parents) is unsaid and left up to the interpretation of the audience.
The only reason we see more emotion from him is because his Bond was put in those situations more so than his predecessors - seeing Vesper and M die being examples. Compare that to Brosnan's Bond in TWINE with the bizarre 'he knew about my shoulder, he knew where to hurt me' scene. Brosnan looks like he's genuinely hurt emotionally by Elektra's betrayal for some reason. I doubt Craig would have played the scene quite like that.
I'm sorry to hear this, mate..... Hope you're alright now.
Craig already has the looks, shredded body and the action scenes; and there were already plenty of masculine moments. He's built up that credibility, so that he had room to be emotional every now and then.
Craig Bond was alpha through and through, yet grounded and dimensional.