In search of James Bond 007 - is he disappearing ?

barryt007barryt007 Stalking Kara Milovy with an elephant gun and a chainsaw.
edited January 2017 in Actors Posts: 17,317
Connery was the ultimate - suave,sophisticated,deadly,looking fantastic whatever outfit he wore.
Lazenby was a hard,tough Bond BUT also had class.
Moore was the ultimate in cool,with an eyebrow to die for,deadly with the ladies.
Dalton was steely,determined,focused..charming when he needed to be,deadly when not.
Brosnan was slick,lean,never flustered under pressure..charming on the outside,a killer on the inside.

Craig is ?

Do you think the Bond we all know and love is slowly undergoing a change ? becoming more of an action hero than a spy ? losing all the charm and sophistication he once had with the other 5 Bonds ?
His lack of respect for M,especially in SP ..does this concern you ?

Is this a sign of the times,as Bond has to compete with MI and Bourne ?
Is the ever-growing length between Bond films damaging Bond's image compared to the 2 year gaps before,meaning we are losing touch with him as the wait gets longer ?

This is a serious subject that I think needs discussion from hard-core fans like us ...comments ?
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Comments

  • Posts: 6,443
    I think that back in the 60 and 70s the sort of thing Bond was doing was unique. No one to challenge.
    These days we have so many action franchises that Bond can get lost in the shuffle and too many Bond films (ie every two years) would damage the series as people have enough action films to see.

    And I believe Bond became more of an action hero and less of a real person way back in the 70s.

    As for Craig, he is a little bit of a loose cannon yes, but Bond has never been one to sticking rigidly to his orders (even Roger Moore went off on a tangent now and then).

    He doesn't do the charm thing that well I agree. So he has morphed into a combination of traditional Bond and modern action hero. Designed for modern audiences.

  • suavejmfsuavejmf England
    Posts: 3,717
    Dalton was steely, determined, focused.....charming when he needed to be, deadly when not. Yes. But he was also the worst dressed Bond in LTK....my only gripe with that film.

    Brosnan was slick, lean....hang on lean? Have you seen DAD??!! ;)

    Craig is......the best Bond since Connery.

    The charm and sophistication is there to see.

    His lack of respect for M, especially in SP ..is grounded in his contempt at the former M being dead. In Fleming's novel YOLT, Bond has a terrible attitude towards M as he is depressed. In fact in TMWTGG he get brainwashed by SMERCH and trys to kill M.

    The gaps between films are annoying, but this is due to the scale and finance required in modern times.

    No, I think Craig is actually more Fleming than Moore and Brosnan. The character also remains a well dressed snob.
  • edited January 2017 Posts: 1,367
    I'd say Craig is the blunt 'everyman' Bond. James Bond for the post 9/11 world. It fits with the times, the audience like it.

    Daniel Craig plays to his strengths as an actor. He's not a Connery/Moore type actor - not an actor that's naturally smooth/charming but that's not necessarily a negative. Roger Moore is not a Daniel Craig type actor. What works for one actor doesn't work for another.

    The idea of a gentlemanly spy with a licence to kill is a bit outdated for a mainstream audience. We have films like The Fast and The Furious, Jason Bourne, Mission Impossible etc that have taken inspiration from James Bond but stripped the aspirational qualities we associate with James Bond.

    I think the rise of the internet - where people can post what they like, where it's easy to be provoked, to give and receive offense - makes the old Bond seem even more anachronistic. The charming, gentlemanly Bond with little character backstory - a mysterious hero with few or no flaws - doesn't quite fit in the post 9/11 internet world, perhaps. It's a product of the 1950s/60s and you can't expect things to stay in the past.
  • LordBrettSinclairLordBrettSinclair Greensleeves
    Posts: 167
    Craig is ?

    That sums it up perfectly. No direction no clear path no originality.
  • Posts: 4,325
    Craig is ... the best Bond
  • stagstag In the thick of it!
    Posts: 943
    Craig is ?

    That sums it up perfectly. No direction no clear path no originality.

    Yup.

  • Posts: 6,443
    Craig is ?

    That sums it up perfectly. No direction no clear path no originality.

    You are saying Daniel Craig has no direction, no clear path etc? I would debate that. He has given his character a very clear path. The character has grown and been shaped by what has happened in his life. Craig totally puts across Bond's journey from Casino Royale to Spectre.

    Someone like Pierce Brosnan (who I liked as Bond on balance) never really did that. He just tried different things and he gave four different interpretations of Bond without really getting it how he wanted it.
  • BirdlesonBirdleson San Jose, CA
    Posts: 25,370
    It does concern me that, beginning with Brosnan, Bond has evolved onto more of an action hero than a spy.
  • ClarkDevlinClarkDevlin Martinis, Girls and Guns
    Posts: 15,040
    Craig is a good Bond in his own right. But, there's no way in hell hes the best Bond, let alone competing with the god-Bond Sean Connery.
  • bondjamesbondjames You were expecting someone else?
    edited January 2017 Posts: 23,883
    barryt007 wrote:
    Do you think the Bond we all know and love is slowly undergoing a change ? becoming more of an action hero than a spy ? losing all the charm and sophistication he once had with the other 5 Bonds ?
    His lack of respect for M,especially in SP ..does this concern you ?
    Yes, and no. I think Bond is the way he is now because of Craig and his limitations (every actor has limitations, mind you). I think, if EON recast with another actor who can do sophisticated more convincingly, then we will see a different approach. The essential suaveness of Bond is missing these days, and no, I don't think Craig, good though he is, captures that aspect well at all.
    NicNac wrote: »
    He doesn't do the charm thing that well I agree. So he has morphed into a combination of traditional Bond and modern action hero. Designed for modern audiences.
    I agree, but believe that's purely a Craig thing. It can change back with a new actor.
    fanbond123 wrote: »
    Daniel Craig plays to his strengths as an actor. He's not a Connery/Moore type actor - not an actor that's naturally smooth/charming but that's not necessarily a negative. Roger Moore is not a Daniel Craig type actor. What works for one actor doesn't work for another.
    I agree. Craig plays to his strengths, as he should. EON have, to date, made films that fit his persona and characterization, although I think they veered off course with SP in this regard, which was more Brosnan'esque imho.
    fanbond123 wrote: »
    The idea of a gentlemanly spy with a licence to kill is a bit outdated for a mainstream audience. We have films like The Fast and The Furious, Jason Bourne, Mission Impossible etc that have taken inspiration from James Bond but stripped the aspirational qualities we associate with James Bond.

    I think the rise of the internet - where people can post what they like, where it's easy to be provoked, to give and receive offense - makes the old Bond seem even more anachronistic. The charming, gentlemanly Bond with little character backstory - a mysterious hero with few or no flaws - doesn't quite fit in the post 9/11 internet world, perhaps. It's a product of the 1950s/60s and you can't expect things to stay in the past.
    I'm not sure if I agree with this. I think there is a place for a more suave, sophisticated, and refined spy relative to what James Bond is today. As an example, somewhat controversially, I believe Tom Cruise was far more elegant and sophisticated in his dinner suit in both the end sequences of MI4-GP and in Austria in MI5-RN than Craig was in SP, despite the white dinner jacket. Cruise does dapper very well when he has to. Craig needs to be finessed by an outstanding script and direction, as he was in CR and to an extent in QoS (again, in Austria coincidentally). A lot of this is physical (Craig has a thuggish look to him that evokes Red Grant or McQueen - I think McQueen was more refined actually) but some of it is acting style too.
  • barryt007barryt007 Stalking Kara Milovy with an elephant gun and a chainsaw.
    Posts: 17,317
    bondjames wrote: »
    barryt007 wrote:
    Do you think the Bond we all know and love is slowly undergoing a change ? becoming more of an action hero than a spy ? losing all the charm and sophistication he once had with the other 5 Bonds ?
    His lack of respect for M,especially in SP ..does this concern you ?
    Yes, and no. I think Bond is the way he is now because of Craig and his limitations (every actor has limitations, mind you). I think, if EON recast with another actor who can do sophisticated more convincingly, then we will see a different approach. The essential suaveness of Bond is missing these days, and no, I don't think Craig, good though he is, captures that aspect well at all.
    NicNac wrote: »
    He doesn't do the charm thing that well I agree. So he has morphed into a combination of traditional Bond and modern action hero. Designed for modern audiences.
    I agree, but believe that's purely a Craig thing. It can change back with a new actor.
    fanbond123 wrote: »
    Daniel Craig plays to his strengths as an actor. He's not a Connery/Moore type actor - not an actor that's naturally smooth/charming but that's not necessarily a negative. Roger Moore is not a Daniel Craig type actor. What works for one actor doesn't work for another.
    I agree. Craig plays to his strengths, as he should. EON have, to date, made films that fit his persona and characterization, although I think they veered off course with SP in this regard, which was more Brosnan'esque imho.
    fanbond123 wrote: »
    The idea of a gentlemanly spy with a licence to kill is a bit outdated for a mainstream audience. We have films like The Fast and The Furious, Jason Bourne, Mission Impossible etc that have taken inspiration from James Bond but stripped the aspirational qualities we associate with James Bond.

    I think the rise of the internet - where people can post what they like, where it's easy to be provoked, to give and receive offense - makes the old Bond seem even more anachronistic. The charming, gentlemanly Bond with little character backstory - a mysterious hero with few or no flaws - doesn't quite fit in the post 9/11 internet world, perhaps. It's a product of the 1950s/60s and you can't expect things to stay in the past.
    I'm not sure if I agree with this. I think there is a place for a more suave, sophisticated, and refined spy relative to what James Bond is today. As an example, somewhat controversially, I believe Tom Cruise was far more elegant and sophisticated in his dinner suit in both the end sequences of MI4-GP and in Austria in MI5-RN than Craig was in SP, despite the white dinner jacket. Cruise does dapper very well when he has to. Craig needs to be finessed by an outstanding script and direction, as he was in CR and to an extent in QoS (again, in Austria coincidentally). A lot of this is physical (Craig has a thuggish look to him that evokes Red Grant or McQueen - I think McQueen was more refined actually) but some of it is acting style too.

    Very good post @bondjames ...i cant argue with any of those points.

  • When was Bond ever not an action figure? Movie making has changed since 1962 and is certainly different from movie making in 2015, but as “M” says in the film Dr. NO, “… if you carry a double-0 number, it means you’re licensed to kill, not get killed.” Guns, Skydiving, Judo, SCUBA diving, etc., great action hero stuff. On the other hand everybody has a least favorite actor that plays the Bond character. Speaking for myself I’ve enjoyed Craig’s revival of the Bond series, after all Bond is only a story book hero, unless of course you believe that all of that action created by cutting and pasting in the editing room is real.
  • barryt007barryt007 Stalking Kara Milovy with an elephant gun and a chainsaw.
    edited January 2017 Posts: 17,317
    Just for everyone's attention here,my thread is not anti-Craig,he is my favourite Bond to date !!

    Im just throwing many questions that have been asked often,into the ring,in one thread rather than sporadically spread across the site.

    Basically being 'devil's advocate' .

  • NicNac wrote: »

    Someone like Pierce Brosnan (who I liked as Bond on balance) never really did that. He just tried different things and he gave four different interpretations of Bond without really getting it how he wanted it.

    Brosnan's Bond was essentially a "greatest hits" Bond. If the script called for a Connery moment he gave us his best Connery. If it called for a Roger Moore moment, out came the smirk and the eyebrow lift. He did a pretty good Dalton-Bond too. In Brosnan's defense, he was only playing it the way Eon wanted him to play it. But he never gave us "his" Bond and now is suffering for it in the eyes of many fans.
  • Posts: 6,443
    When was Bond ever not an action figure? Movie making has changed since 1962 and is certainly different from movie making in 2015, but as “M” says in the film Dr. NO, “… if you carry a double-0 number, it means you’re licensed to kill, not get killed.” Guns, Skydiving, Judo, SCUBA diving, etc., great action hero stuff. On the other hand everybody has a least favorite actor that plays the Bond character. Speaking for myself I’ve enjoyed Craig’s revival of the Bond series, after all Bond is only a story book hero, unless of course you believe that all of that action created by cutting and pasting in the editing room is real.
    Spot on. One critic in 1962 complained that Dr No was all action with little dialogue. Funny how things change yet everything stays the same.

    Bond Has always essentially been an action hero
  • Posts: 4,325
    Bond has always been an action hero. Compare his adventures to the real world of spying.
  • bondjamesbondjames You were expecting someone else?
    edited January 2017 Posts: 23,883
    No doubt he is an action figure. I think the point is whether he has lost his uniquely British (or is that English, given current possible scenarios within the UK?) style while being an action hero. I personally think he has, ever since TLD, which for me was the last Bond film that reflected his inherent sophistication and class.

    I realize that CR is one of the best Bond films, but the air of refinement in that film came from others for me, such as Vesper, Mathis and LeChiffre, rather than from Bond himself.

    I look forward to the return of that slightly arrogant and highbrowed spy one day. I think he'll be back.
  • suavejmfsuavejmf England
    edited January 2017 Posts: 3,717
    Suaveness: Brosnan and Moore were the more caricature take on the suave spy. They can woo women just by walking in a room. Craig's version of Bond is more like Fleming's character, he is arrogant and sometimes colder. EXACTLY as in Fleming's novels women are at first wary of him, but warm to him in the end.

    Sophistication: Craig's Bond has a penchant for Italian and English tailoring and John Lobb tailored shoes. He drinks the EXACT Fleming Vesper Martini, Bollinger Grand Anee Champagne and vintage 50 year old Makellon Whisky. He dives an Aston Martin both at work as well as having a private car and has an Omega watch. He also dines on Caviar and is put off by health foods. Sounds pretty Fleming to me. Craig's English accent is also perfect for the part. EXACTLY the same as Fleming's Bond, Craig's incarnation drinks the odd beer in hotter climates. Fleming's Bond was not uniquely British despite being a public school boy and Naval Officer. He is a 'man of the world' and therefore has more exotic tastes than the average less travelled Brit. He also has a half Scot/ half Swiss heritage too.

    Action Man: Mathis to Bond Casino Royale novel (1953): "Don't let me down and become a human yourself, we would lose such a valuable machine".
  • bondjamesbondjames You were expecting someone else?
    edited January 2017 Posts: 23,883
    He may do all of those things and anyone can do those things, including wannabees (many competitors tried in the 60's and 70's as a matter of fact, but were never equal to the real deal). It takes a special actor to sell it.

    The question remains, is he convincing in that regard. I contend that he is not in comparison to his predecessors from the 60s through the 80s. We wouldn't be having this discussion if there wasn't some doubt about it.

    Some of that is down to him (persona, physique, characterization etc.) & some of it is down to the scripts, which don't emphasize Bond's cultivated air as openly or effectively as in the past. Arguably two films were about rookie Bond though.

    That's not to say he's not impressively convincing with other aspects of Bond's persona or as a cold blooded killer. He certainly is.
  • Posts: 6,443
    I thinking throwing doubt at the suitability of the present incumbent is quite natural. We discuss it because he is current and therefore relevant to the success of the franchise.

    Every actor's suitability has been questioned, especially Roger Moore in the 70s and 80s. Now we look back on his time with misty eyed fondness because he can't possibly do any more damage (not that I thought he did, but the consensus from critics and hard core fans).

    my opinion is that first and foremost the actor must have enough charisma to carry the role. If the actor doesn't own the screen then the audience won't believe in him or the film. Getting an exact interpretation of Fleming's character is (sadly or otherwise) less important. It's my main gripe with Dalton - he was never a big screen leading man despite his look and looks.
  • pachazopachazo Make Your Choice
    Posts: 6,257
    NicNac wrote: »
    Every actor's suitability has been questioned, especially Roger Moore in the 70s and 80s. Now we look back on his time with misty eyed fondness because he can't possibly do any more damage (not that I thought he did, but the consensus from critics and hard core fans).
    Don't worry. Fifty years from now, when there's a bad joke in the newest Bond film, some people will still be convinced that it's Roger Moore's fault.
  • Posts: 4,325
    suavejmf wrote: »
    Suaveness: Brosnan and Moore were the more caricature take on the suave spy. They can woo women just by walking in a room. Craig's version of Bond is more like Fleming's character, he is arrogant and sometimes colder. EXACTLY as in Fleming's novels women are at first wary of him, but warm to him in the end.

    Sophistication: Craig's Bond has a penchant for Italian and English tailoring and John Lobb tailored shoes. He drinks the EXACT Fleming Vesper Martini, Bollinger Grand Anee Champagne and vintage 50 year old Makellon Whisky. He dives an Aston Martin both at work as well as having a private car and has an Omega watch. He also dines on Caviar and is put off by health foods. Sounds pretty Fleming to me. Craig's English accent is also perfect for the part. EXACTLY the same as Fleming's Bond, Craig's incarnation drinks the odd beer in hotter climates. Fleming's Bond was not uniquely British despite being a public school boy and Naval Officer. He is a 'man of the world' and therefore has more exotic tastes than the average less travelled Brit. He also has a half Scot/ half Swiss heritage too.

    Action Man: Mathis to Bond Casino Royale novel (1953): "Don't let me down and become a human yourself, we would lose such a valuable machine".

    This is spot on.
  • suavejmfsuavejmf England
    Posts: 3,717
    bondjames wrote: »
    He may do all of those things and anyone can do those things, including wannabees (many competitors tried in the 60's and 70's as a matter of fact, but were never equal to the real deal). It takes a special actor to sell it.

    The question remains, is he convincing in that regard. I contend that he is not in comparison to his predecessors from the 60s through the 80s. We wouldn't be having this discussion if there wasn't some doubt about it.

    Some of that is down to him (persona, physique, characterization etc.) & some of it is down to the scripts, which don't emphasize Bond's cultivated air as openly or effectively as in the past. Arguably two films were about rookie Bond though.

    That's not to say he's not impressively convincing with other aspects of Bond's persona or as a cold blooded killer. He certainly is.

    I contend that Craig is the best Bond since Connery in everyway. He has natural presence and charisma on screen as a leading man. That's why he's the highest paid British actor in the world. In interviews off screen, yes he isn't as suave as e.g. Moore naturally, which makes his acting talent all the more impressive.
  • bondjamesbondjames You were expecting someone else?
    edited January 2017 Posts: 23,883
    suavejmf wrote: »
    bondjames wrote: »
    He may do all of those things and anyone can do those things, including wannabees (many competitors tried in the 60's and 70's as a matter of fact, but were never equal to the real deal). It takes a special actor to sell it.

    The question remains, is he convincing in that regard. I contend that he is not in comparison to his predecessors from the 60s through the 80s. We wouldn't be having this discussion if there wasn't some doubt about it.

    Some of that is down to him (persona, physique, characterization etc.) & some of it is down to the scripts, which don't emphasize Bond's cultivated air as openly or effectively as in the past. Arguably two films were about rookie Bond though.

    That's not to say he's not impressively convincing with other aspects of Bond's persona or as a cold blooded killer. He certainly is.

    I contend that Craig is the best Bond since Connery in everyway. He has natural presence and charisma on screen as a leading man. That's why he's the highest paid British actor in the world. In interviews off screen, yes he isn't as suave as e.g. Moore naturally, which makes his acting talent all the more impressive.
    I think he's the best actor to play James Bond, bar none. He is definitely acting when he plays the part and he does the best job that he can with his abilities. His commitment to the role & all aspects of the character is very impressive. I still prefer Moore's interpretation (particularly in LALD - TSWLM) to Craig's if one considers all of his four films. Narrow it down to CR-QoS and Craig comes out ahead for me. Just.
  • suavejmfsuavejmf England
    Posts: 3,717
    LALD is Moores best film by far....its a shame he didn't play that tone throughout his tenure. As you are American I can see why you like Moore best...he is the quintessential gentleman Brit.......something that is probably iconic to Americans.
  • bondjamesbondjames You were expecting someone else?
    edited January 2017 Posts: 23,883
    suavejmf wrote: »
    LALD is Moores best film by far....its a shame he didn't play that tone throughout his tenure. As you are American I can see why you like Moore best...he is the quintessential gentleman Brit.......something that is probably iconic to Americans.
    I'm not so sure about this. I may currently spend time between US/Canada, but grew up in Harrow, and completed my GCSE, A-Levels and uni in the UK. I just like his interpretation. There may be deep seated psychological reasons for that (perhaps he reminds me of an uncle or something), but I don't think it's because I see him as a quintessential Brit. Craig is more of a (regular) Brit to me, but Sir Rog is certainly far more refined.
  • suavejmf wrote: »
    LALD is Moores best film by far....its a shame he didn't play that tone throughout his tenure. As you are American I can see why you like Moore best...he is the quintessential gentleman Brit.......something that is probably iconic to Americans.

    I think Moore's best performance was in FYEO; it was a more serious down to earth approach to the character than what he was normally use too. I always divide the Moore era into two categories; there is pre TSWLM, and post TSWLM. LALD and TMWTGG were Moore's more harder edged performances. TSWLM is where they began to tone down the character for Moore, but you saw that harder edge reemerge for FYEO
  • bondjamesbondjames You were expecting someone else?
    edited January 2017 Posts: 23,883
    He still had the edge in TSWLM, but the humour was indeed seeping in. By MR it was full fledged, but I contend that Sir Rog did that to stay in tune with the tone of the film, which was generally a comedic brother to TSWLM. His MR performance is near perfect for the tone of the film.
  • Exactly, I think each Bond film should be taken for what it is, the performance depends on how tone of the script. The last time I saw TSWLM was Christmas Eve, and I forgot how much of a bastard Moore was in some scenes. The film was a good mix between Seriousness and Humor, along the lines of the Connery movies from 64-67.
  • barryt007barryt007 Stalking Kara Milovy with an elephant gun and a chainsaw.
    Posts: 17,317
    bondjames wrote: »
    suavejmf wrote: »
    LALD is Moores best film by far....its a shame he didn't play that tone throughout his tenure. As you are American I can see why you like Moore best...he is the quintessential gentleman Brit.......something that is probably iconic to Americans.
    I'm not so sure about this. I may currently spend time between US/Canada, but grew up in Harrow, and completed my GCSE, A-Levels and uni in the UK. I just like his interpretation. There may be deep seated psychological reasons for that (perhaps he reminds me of an uncle or something), but I don't think it's because I see him as a quintessential Brit. Craig is more of a (regular) Brit to me, but Sir Rog is certainly far more refined.

    Harrow ? so did i,in Harrow Weald....!!!!

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