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  Publicity Stills of
"Quantum of Solace"
(Courtesy of Columbia TriStar)

Genre: Action
Director: Marc Forster
Cast: Daniel Craig, Olga Kurylenko, Mathieu Amalric, Judi Dench, Gemma Arterton, Jeffrey Wright, Jesper Christensen, Joaquin Cosio
RunTime: 1 hr 46 mins
Released By: Columbia TriStar
Rating: PG
Official Website: http://www.007.com/

Opening Day: 5 November 2008


Betrayed by Vesper, the woman he loved, 007 fights the urge to make his latest mission personal. Pursuing his determination to uncover the truth, Bond and M (Judi Dench) interrogate Mr White (Jesper Christensen) who reveals the organisation which blackmailed Vesper is far more complex and dangerous than anyone had imagined.

Forensic intelligence links an Mi6 traitor to a bank account in Haiti where a case of mistaken identity introduces Bond to the beautiful but feisty Camille (Olga Kurylenko), a woman who has her own vendetta. Camille leads Bond straight to Dominic Greene (Mathieu Amalric), a ruthless business man and major force within the mysterious organisation.

On a mission that leads him to Austria, Italy and South America, Bond discovers that Greene, conspiring to take total control of one of the world's most important natural resources, is forging a deal with the exiled General Medrano (Joaquin Cosio). Using his associates in the organisation, and manipulating his powerful contacts within the CIA and the British government, Greene promises to overthrow the existing regime in a Latin American country, giving the General control of the country in exchange for a seemingly barren piece of land.

In a minefield of treachery, murder and deceit, Bond allies with old friends in a battle to uncover the truth. As he gets closer to finding the man responsible for the betrayal of Vesper, 007 must keep one step ahead of the CIA, the terrorists and even M, to unravel Greene's sinister plan and stop his organisation.

Movie Review:

There were a couple of things that the reboot of James Bond franchise, Casino Royale did well to generate a whole new excitement for James Bond. The hero is finally prone to failures, the action sequences and plot device are simply exciting and straight to the point and Mr. New Bond himself (though lack the good looks) was charming as hell. When the trailer for Quantum of Solace hits the Internet and the Cinemas, it seems that this new film had wisely follows the Casino Royale in terms of storyline to allow the viewers to grow with the 'new' James Bond as he learns the trade of espionage.

Regretfully, Quantum of Solace disappoints as it reverts back to the pre Casino Royale James Bond movies.

That meant the action sequences are more elaborated. As what the villain Le Chiffre said in Casino Royale, it’s the simplest things that are more effective. Beauty in it’s simplicity. Here we get a over the top big budget car chase, a boat chase, a roof top chase and even a plane chase thrown in the mix but none as exciting as the free running sequence or the car flip in the previous film. It’s like those previous James Bond movie where effort are made to for those big action sequence set up but it’s quickly forgotten after the scene move to the following scene. It actually boils down to how the action sequences were edited and it just lack the crisp long follow through of the action sequences in Casino Royale that makes the viewers feel the danger and excitement of what is being transpire on the screen.

Then there is the plot device of this installment which took a long time to unravel. As plot device that had little meaning at the end, Casino Royale made it clear early so the focus could be on the card match and various subplots that going on outside the match. Quantum of Solace plays the villain’s agenda close to it’s heart till three quarters of the movie and the revelation of the cause felt like it was a massive effort that’s achieving something very minor in the worldly sense. Call me unsympathetic but even if the villain get’s their way, the effect would probably be just a small print at the foreign section of the newspaper.

The director also took one too many shots of the indigenous people and location that often invokes the feeling that he was making Kite Runner 2 instead of a James Bond movie. As a James Bond movie, it just didn’t feel like the right film to explore humanity concern for the third world country and very little could be achieved in this sort of film. In the end, it just served as a form of distraction.

There were simply too many stuff that’s missing from the first reboot movie. The numerous witty bantering between James Bond with the people around him and a simple effective spy story to care about were just a few absent ingredients in this movie. The only few great stuffs that were retained from the good old Casino Royale were James Bond’s romantic anguish and he is still in a learning curve of his career. But those moments are far too short and few to leave any memorable marks in this sequel.

If Casino Royale sets a blaze to the life of James Bond’s franchise, Quantum of Solace is the wet bucket that is smothering the excitement and love out of this reboot franchise. It’s still entertaining in it’s own right but it just make one wonder that since it took it’s first step out of the formula, why does it relapse back to the old self again? It felt like a wasted opportunity.

Movie Rating:

(A step back to era of the forgettable James Bond flicks)

Review by Richard Lim Jr


. Vantage Point (2008)

. The Kite Runner (2007)

. Casino Royale (2006)

. Munich (2005)

. Layer Cake DVD (2004)

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