Quantum of Solace (UK-US, 2008)

Bond facing the realpolitik

Bond facing the realpolitik

I didn’t have high hopes for this so was pleased to see this episode of Bond at least referencing the realpolitik. While it’s usual for action cinema to have a patina of contemporary reference, it seems here to be more than just topical. There’s only one American character, Felix, who’s vaguely sympathetic so it will be interesting to see how it plays in America. There’s plenty of references to torture (that’s the British), American interference in the politics of South America and the fact that oil and water are the vital resources of now and the future. There’s a reference to the golden body killing in Goldfinger (1964), this time the naked woman on the bed is covered in oil.

Craig’s wasted in the role (the trailered Defiance in with him looks interesting) but he runs and snarls with panache. I liked the humour, a Bolivian taxi driver insists on telling them why he became a driver, and the climax is suitably pyrotechnic. The best scene, however, is the Tosca set piece. The magnificent music is foregrounded, the set design is terrific and the narrative ruse is clever. The opera audience is a perfect metaphor for the bourgeoisie that control power.

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4 Responses

  1. While it may address the ‘realpolitik’ it doesn’t do it very well, it is very obvious and rather laughable: an environmentalist called Dominic ‘Greene’ very imaginative.

    It is a very confused piece with little to no narrative structure. The plot is all over the place, the action seqeunces are shot to frentically and edited in a clumsy fashion. And they are too many action set pieces, it is a chase sequence after a chase sequence after a chase sequence… and it is really dull. The Tosca opera bit would have been forgiveable if I knew what was going on. The final section in the hotel was ridiculous as Greene turns into Jack Torrance while the building is being destroyed. What were all those people doing there? And why was that guy from the beginning there? It is incomprehensible and very disappointing, the bar was set so high with Casino Royale and now it has been lowered to such a standard that the next film could only be better. The acting however by Craig, Dench and Amalric is great, but the film doesn’t live up to them.

  2. Your point about the action sequences is correct; though I enjoyed the initial car chase that was built, at its beginning, on a montage of graphic matches however I didn’t think the plot was particularly weak (the Tosca performance was being used as a secret meeting place for disparate individuals who’d draw attention to themselves if they met together or on conference call). Don’t think you should criticise characters for their names as you’d have to drop ‘Bond’ (my word is my…) too!

  3. Plus, if you want to watch a film which addresses the politics that this does in a more profound way, watch WALL-E. That’s got more stunning visuals as well.

  4. а все таки: бесподобно.

    (“And all the same priceless.” Courtesy of Google Translate)

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