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Bond: Goldeneye

11.12.2008

After the relative failure of LICENCE TO KILL at the box office, it took six whole years to get another Bond film off the ground. In that time, Timothy Dalton either left the role, or was fired (depending on who you talk to), and many actors, including Mel Gibson, Liam Neeson, Sam Neil (who actually tested for the role in í86), and Hugh Grant, were considered as replacements. In the end, they settled on Pierce Brosnan- who had almost become Bond back in í87.

With a new Bond signed and ready to go, the filmmakers now had to focus on modernizing the character for a new audience of filmgoers, who had all but forgotten that the character even existed.

GOLDENEYE

PLOT: Bond must stop of group of terrorists, led by his former friend and colleague, Alec Trevelyan (a.k.a 006), who threaten to use a Russian satellite weapons system, code name Goldeneye, on London.

REVIEW: GOLDENEYE was a major film event back in the fall of 1995. I was in high school at the time, and this was the first Bond film I was lucky enough to see on the big screen. Naturally, I loved it when it came out, and I still think that itís by far the best film of the Brosnan era.

Unlike some of the later Brosnan Bondís, GOLDENEYE, while suitably epic, doesnít go too overboard in the action department (although I always hated the scene where Bond freefalls INTO an airplane- which always seemed terribly phoney, with sub par early nineties CGI). While the storyline is nothing special, an effort was made to make this film somewhat topical- much is made of the fact that Bond is seen as a relic of the cold war to his superiors. Itís also the first film to feature Judi Dench as M, and the fact that this role was played by a woman was big news in í95.

In GOLDENEYE, M calls Bond is a misogynistic dinosaur- and I find it interesting to re-watch this film now, as Brosnanís dynamic with Dench was completely different from the one she shares with Daniel Craig. In the Brosnan films, M, while sheíll often critique his personal habits, is never on Bondís case for being a loose canon, as you get the feeling that she knows deep down that Bond is smarter than she is. In these earlier films, he tends to view her as a bureaucrat- and obviously doesnít have the respect for her that Craig has in the new films. Itís also worth noting that M is nowhere near as tough in the Brosnan films as she nowadays. You rarely see her out in the field here, but in the Craig films, she takes a much more active role- and you get the feeling that in many ways, Bond is her puppet- but here, he answers to no one.

Itís worth noting that GOLDENEYE, like CASINO ROYALE, was helmed by Martin Campbell, who seems the go-to guy whenever they decide to re-launch the franchise. Campbell is one of the best directors the series ever had, and heís extremely capable at staging impressive action scenes. Thereís a few great ones here- including a tank chase through St. Petersburg, and the climactic hand to hand fight between 007 & 006.

BOND

In his first Bond outing, Pierce Brosnan does a great job. Iíve always thought Brosnan was more like Roger Moore than Sean Connery- but really, thereís nothing wrong with that. Watching this film again, itís easy to see why Brosnan was such a popular Bond throughout his seven year run.

VILLAIN

Sean Bean does a great job here as 006, and I always thought he would have made a perfectly acceptable Bond himself if the right opportunity came along. That said, Famke Janssen as Xenia Onatopp (wink wink) really steals the show. I always thought Janseen was one of the best villainesses in the series- and youíve got to love the fact that she orgasms every time she kills.

BOND GIRL

Izabella Scorupco plays Natalya Simonova- whoís probably the hottest computer programmer in film history. While some of her thunder is stolen by Janseen, sheís still very sexy and likable- and probably the best Bond girl of the Brosnan era.

BOND MUSIC: Eric Serra, known mostly from his work with Luc Besson is on hand to provide Bond with a very avant-garde, electronica influenced score. Iíve always liked this musical score, although I know a lot of fans loathe it. Good theme song by Tina Turner & The Edge.

BODY COUNT: According to commanderbond.net- Bond kills an astronomical 237 people in this outing. While I donít remember the film being particularly violent, he does blow up not one, but two military bases in the film- probably accounting for the ridiculous body count. And they say Brosnan wasnít toughÖ

NUMBER OF WOMEN BOND SLEEPS WITH: Only two- and sinfully, Xenia Onatopp is not one of them!

BEST ONE- LINER: ďBeg your pardon, forgot to knock.Ē- To a Russian soldier using a cubicle Bond drops into- just before knocking him out.

BEST DOUBLE ENTENDRE: Xenia: You don't need the gun.
Bond: Well, that depends on your definition of safe sex. .

BEST GADGET: : Bond drives a BMW for the first time. While itís no Aston Martin, itís still a VERY sweet ride.

RECEPTION: GOLDENEYE was a huge worldwide hit- grossing $350 Million worldwide, with $106 million in the U.S (both broke franchise records at the time).

GRADE: 8/10- Easily the best Bond film of the Brosnan era.

Previous reviews: DR. NO, FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE , GOLDFINGER, THUNDERBALL, YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE, ON HER MAJESTY'S SECRET SERVICE, DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER , LIVE AND LET DIE, THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN, THE SPY WHO LOVED ME, MOONRAKER, FOR YOUR EYES ONLY, OCTOPUSSY, NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN, A VIEW TO A KILL, THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS, LICENCE TO KILL

Source: JoBlo.com

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