Early Reviews for SKYFALL Overwhelmingly Positive, Some Say the Best Bond Ever; Plus New SKYFALL Clip

     October 12, 2012


Early reviews are in for Sam Mendes’ Skyfall, the latest film in the James Bond series. Reactions have been overwhelmingly positive so far with the phrase “Best. Bond. Ever.” being thrown about.  While it may very well be true, those of us stateside won’t know for sure until Skyfall debuts on November 9th.  In the meantime, we’ve trod carefully through the spoiler-laden minefield of reviews to bring you the latest word on Skyfall from those in the know.  Plus, we have a new clip to share with you that should tide you over.

Skyfall stars Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Helen McCrory, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Whishaw, Berenice Marlohe and Naomie Harris.  Hit the jump to check out the new clip and early reviews.

Here’s the new clip from Skyfall first, in case you want to avoid even the most remote spoilers for the film (via Yahoo!). The reviews and Tweets follow below.

Here’s a sampling of the reviews so far.  Digital Spy echoed a common sentiment, calling Skyfall “a significant improvement on its ramshackle predecessor Quantum of Solace.”  They go on to say that “007 fans have a film that respects Bond’s lengthy screen history while pushing its hero into new territory.” Head over to the above-mentioned link for their full review, but here’s their closer:

Skyfall‘s clean, direct narrative, blistering action sequences (a neon-lit Shanghai showdown deserves to be singled out) and strong performances across the board elevate it to the upper end of the Bond movie spectrum. There may be an awful lot of Heineken and a few minutes too many, but you won’t walk out of this disappointed. Turns out you can teach an old dog new tricks.

The Times gave james-bond-skyfall-naomie-harris-1the film five stars, saying:

Skyfall is a great British bulldog of a movie. From the moment the orchestral sound of Adele belts out, sending a nostalgic shiver down the audience’s collective spine, we know this will be a triumphant return to classic Bond. Sam Mendes, the director, deftly balances fanboy worship of 007 tradition with sophisticated film-making, and (apart from early Connery), nobody does it better than Daniel Craig.

The Daily Mail, another five-star rater, gave this odd description of the film:

Skyfall was a fantastic combination of 007 meets Bourne meets Spooks meets Home Alone.

And although I’m not familiar with Spooks, I can’t wait to see how the hell Home Alone fits into Skyfall.  The review also chose to highlight M, played by Dame Judi Dench (slightly spoilery quote ahead):

Bond is back and he’s more dangerous than ever but so is M who is the most ruthless character in Skyfall.

As played by Dame Judi Dench, the security services chief is like a lioness in winter as she prowls her office ordering an agent to ‘take the bloody shot’, a move that puts Daniel Craig’s craggy James Bond in grave danger.

A sinister force from M’s past, played with delicious relish by Javier Bardem, has stolen the identities of M’s agents.

james-bond-skyfall-naomie-harrisFinally, The Playlist draws a comparison between Mendes’ Skyfall and Christopher Nolan’s Batman films, saying, “many of the qualities that Nolan brought to the “Batman” series are present and correct in “Skyfall,” both in the good and the bad.”  Still a positive review, it wasn’t quite as glowing as the rest.  See below:

There are some other missteps along the way. At nearly two and a half hour, the film doesn’t drag, but it feels a little over-extended, particularly in a climax that doesn’t quite live up to what went before. A couple of green-screen shots, especially early on, are a little ropey. And while the nods to the series’ past in its 50th anniversary are welcome, some come across as groan-worthy rather than clever (there’s one moment in a Macau casino that feels like it must be a deliberate nod to the more out-there moments of theRoger Moore era, because we can’t see what it’s doing there otherwise…)

But Mendes get a lot more right than he gets wrong, and in the process has found a confident new identity for the franchise — not afraid of its past, but not chasing its competitors, or being scared of the future either. It might take another viewing of each to see if it exceeds “Casino Royale” as the best since the Connery days, but at the very least, it makes clear that, after the disappointment of “Quantum Of Solace,” that Bond is back, and he’s not going anywhere. [B+]

Some #Skyfall Tweets:

Just seen #skyfall. Daniel Craig is magnificent – you will not be disappointed. Roll on another 50 years of @007

#Skyfall review http://dspy.me/PsIeDk  Shake your martinis, folks. We’ve seen the new James Bond movie and it’s a corker!

The nice people @SonyPicturesUK wouldn’t want me to give away much about #Skyfall. They won’t mind me saying it’s the best Bond in 40 years

#Skyfall WOW! You have a massive treat in store for you! Don’t want to review it on air in case I give anything away! It’s just so good!

#Skyfall. Bold. Good-looking. Craig is in his element. Mendes atones for sins of Quantum with gorgeous photography, story and room to think.


Around The Web
  • Justin

    Am I the only person who liked Quantum of Solace?

    • flicster

      No, I actually enjoyed it, too! Perhaps it’s just because everyone was so blown away by Casino Royale that it was a hard act to follow.

      • The13thDoctor

        No good sir you are definitely not alone. Quantum was quite enjoyable and I can think of many reasons I enjoyed it as well. There is a lot to love about it. I could get into it but this is simply a reassuring response not a review.

    • aaronsullivan

      I still like Quantum of Solace quite a bit. Looking forward to this one!

      • Alex

        i loved quantum of solace, but the fast scenes sucked =/ but it was awsome to me

    • Anonymous

      Loved QoS!

    • Lob Taylor

      Hell no ,I thought it was awesome too! Who cares what critics say( I dont)

  • DogmanBoyDude

    QoS was too fast paced with no real character, and limited plot between all the endless and horrifically edited action scenes. It had no breathing room. The whole movie was just an extended epilogue to Casino Royale.

    • aaronsullivan

      I think it was shot for TV screens to be honest. That’s the biggest problem. I found the editing masterful if when you can see the whole frame at once, in the theater it felt broken. I enjoyed the fast pace for the most part, as well, but I will agree that it could have used a bit more breathing room.

      • DogmanBoyDude

        I felt the opera scenes action editing was wrong, the intercutting of the opera on the stage, with bond running through the kitchen was a very bad choice. It’s been a while, but I recall other moments like that also that didn’t work. It was still cool to see Craig as bond, and some of the camera work was glorious, I’ll give credit where it is due.

    • Gantz9

      It was also made during the writers strike. Craig and the director sat around on set and wrote the lines day of. All things being equal that movie being what it is is a hell of an accomplishment.

      • Daniel

        True enough. And Marc Forster knew exactly what he wanted when he brought in Richard Pearson (editor of The Bourne Supremacy, which had an average shot length of 2.4 seconds) to edit the action scenes. Unfortunately, what Forster wanted was not the right thing for the movie.

  • Northern Star

    ‘Quantum of Solace’ is a film that’s really grown on me in the last few months, didn’t like it at first, but really like it now; it’s not a Bond film in it’s own right as much as it is an extended coda to ‘Casino Royale’, it’s also fast, blunt, ruthless in it’s efficiency, and to-the-point… a lot like Bond in the film itself. A few more minutes of character beats on the running time to balance out the relentless action, and the original filmed ending included, and ‘QoS’ would have been a sensational Bond film…

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  • ISeemToBeAVerb

    I so want to leave the theater thinking I just saw the best Bond film ever. How cool would that be?

  • Kal-El

    I think if CR had ended with Bond and the girl together it would’ve been great…then add the rest of CR onto the beginning of QoS and then you’ll have to great movies, part I and part II.

    • Grayden

      No. He needed that loss. Referring to the exchange he and Vesper had when he was recovering, he lost his armor because of her, and her “betrayal”, even though it saved him, made him put it back on. That whole throughline hearkens back to when Bond got married in ‘On Her Majesty’s Secret Service’ and the subsequent murder of his wife. It hardened him and he reverted back to the dispassionate, efficient killer that M needed him to be, and why women were just ‘disposable pleasures’ from that point on. Casino Royale would not have been as perfect as it was if Vesper had lived and they stayed together and it we would have gotten a different film than Quantum of Solace.

  • Kal-El

    I think if CR had ended with Bond and the girl together it would\’ve been great…then add the rest of CR onto the beginning of QoS and then you\’ll have to great movies, part I and part II.

  • MJ

    This article should of came with a slight spoiler alert….

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  • AManWithAKilt

    “Spooks” was a really good British spy series that came out around the same time as 24 (and shared a few stylistic choices like split screen). It was released in the U.S. as “MI-5″.

    Comparing it to “Home Alone” is very odd, though.

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  • Anton

    wohoo i been waiting for this all year! Anton Chigurh vs James Bond! Cant remember the last time I was this excited!

    Where does he work?

  • Mr.Rich316

    Bond VS The wet and sticky bandits?
    That is one hell of a cross over.
    Kevin McCallister is the new Q!!!

  • Anonymous

    more like quantum of suck-ass, am i right?

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