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Saturday, November 10, 2012

Cine Beaverhausen: Skyfall

More than a ladies' man
"So it looks like James Bond may be more than a ladies' man," says this week's National Enquirer, claiming Daniel Craig (married to Rachel Weisz) was caught kissing a "smoking-hot guy" in a parking lot outside Roosterfish, a Venice, California gay bar, in 2010.

As Bond, James Bond, Craig (my favorite star to assay the role since Sean Connery) winds up tied up, subjected to super-villain Javier Bardem's bisexual whims, taking what was previously homoerotic/sado-masochistic subtext, in all the Bond films, out of the celluloid closet and onto the screen. So his Roosterfish experience may have prepared him for this cinematic outing (in a manner of speaking).

Directed by Sam Mendes, this is Bond with brilliance, beginning with Daniel Craig's booty. Craggy Craig (no pretty boy, but with ruggedly masculine features that I certainly deem handsome) has an ass that won't give up as it shakes, rattles and rolls in tight trousers that -- despite all the intensive jumping and running -- never split at the seams. This bodacious butt goes from Turkey to Singapore to London, Macao and the Scottish Highlands; just follow the bouncing buns.

Skyfall is also one of the best scripted Bond films as well as one of the most sumptuously cinematic and beautifully filmed (by Roger Deakins). The typical 007 set pieces are delivered with aplomb from the start, even before Adele sings one of the all-time truly fabulous Bond theme songs over the opening credits. Believe me, this is one action flick that gives you more kiss-kiss bang-bang for your buck.

The question posited from the start of Skyfall is: When will James get his mojo back throughout all the Heineken product placements? (Heini helped finance the film.)

After a near-death experience, 007 is swingin' again with indiscriminate sex and liquor, just the way we like it. But he and M (Judi Dench) find themselves, and Her Majesty's Secret Service, to be social dinosaurs in light of a new age of cyber-terrorism.

Oscar-winner Bardem, as the sinister Silva, plays his part expertly with just the right twist of camp. Craig, Dench, Albert Finney and Ralph Fiennes all give sterling performances. Even CNN's Wolf Blitzer shows up in a cameo as himself!

The villain debuts mid-way through the movie. Blonde, bisexual, all touchy-feely with Bond's face and pawing the agent's hot thighs (in those aforementioned tightly tailored pants), Bardem dominates the flick from that point onward. He makes his entrance on a freight elevator (a'la Tim Curry in Rocky Horror Picture Show), touching ground with a grand soliloquy.  Has any previous Bond super-villain been this Oscar-worthy or made an entrance befitting a classic movie grande dame?

Bond ends up in Silva's frisky hands after the traditional cat-and-mouse game in the nefarious casino. The casino sequence climaxes in a thrilling fist fight in the komodo dragon pit. (Don't ask.) Bond girls are pleasantly represented by good girl Eve and bad girl Severine, in the genre's requisite madonna/whore roles.

Part of what's so great about Skyfall, though, is how it humanizes and deepens both James Bond and M's characters. Faced with computer-era terrors, ultimately all the classic 007 elements fall back in place by film's end.

And, then, there's Bardem's great line reading regarding M: "Mommy was very bad." Worth the price of admission alone.






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