Monday, November 12, 2012

My take on Bond, the shorter version

My last two posts on Skyfall were pretty big, so just in case you thought it was too long, here's the shorter version:

1) I am a moderate Bond movie fan.

2) I especially liked Daniel Craig's Bond in Casino Royale, which uncovered some of the ironies of Bond's status as a "man's man."

3) Skyfall made some good choices, but also some choices that I felt were strange and/or politically retrograde.

4) Most disturbing to me was the queering of the villain, which mainly seemed to elicit uncomfortable laughter when I saw it.

5) Skyfall seemed committed to nostalgia for Bond, which comes with fine nods to Bond history (the Aston Martin, M's hilariously padded door) and a resetting of women's roles in Bond: not head of the department, but maybe a glorified secretarial position.

Addendum: If your first impulse is to say, "of course there's misogyny, it's a Bond film," I will start bite through my lips again. If you want the same old Bond, you can watch the films that were made in a time when misogyny was more pervasive and less discussed; a Bond film made today doesn't get any passes about what was common or accepted back then.

1 comment:

  1. Why don't you tell us how you really feel? Seriously, I have not seen "Skyfall" yet. I wanted to. I liked Casino Royale. Quantum of Solace, not as much. I like Craig in the role. I am also a moderate fan of the James Bond movies and part of that also comes from my bemused enjoyment over the fact that Ian Fleming also wrote "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang".

    It sounds like some of your feelings here are similar to what bothered me about "X Men, First Class".

    I thought it was a good movie in many ways. I loved Michael Fassbender's Magneto and James MacAvoy's Xavier. However, I couldn't get past the fact that the only two "minority" characters in the film where killed or turned villain. Also, Mystique's constant need to be found attractive by men was only solved when Magneto had sex with her in her mutant form? Couldn't she have found her own confidence in a way that didn't involve some dude's penis? It was just too dated for me.