Todd Alcott
15 November 2008 @ 12:07 am




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I will have to wait for the DVD release of Quantum of Solace to issue a full analysis -- I'm not afraid to admit that I didn't understand a lot of it the first time around. The key question of my Bond analysis - "What does James Bond actually do to save the world?" is still a little vague for me twelve hours after watching the movie. I know he goes to a whole bunch of places and kills a whole bunch of people while on the trail of this Dominic Greene character, but I'm not exactly sure why he's doing it and I'm not exactly sure how he's going about it. If I had watched Casino Royale earlier in the morning I would probably be better oriented, and if you have that kind of leisure time at your disposal I recommend doing so -- a number of key plot-points revolve around things that happen in the earlier movie.

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Todd Alcott
25 August 2007 @ 01:26 am






(For those coming in late, I've been watching all the James Bond movies in order. You may read my other Bond pieces here.)


As this is a recent movie, I'm going to go ahead and say SPOILER ALERT.

WHO IS JAMES BOND?
James Bond is one cold bastard. He's recently been promoted to "double-O" status -- I may have missed what he was before that. Was he a "regular-O" agent? Did he have a license to hurt? What was he doing for MI6 before they decided he would make good assassin material? Whatever it was, M seems to have a good eye for talent -- Bond seems to enjoy killing people almost more than he enjoys boinking the ladies. He's also young, untried, cocky, reckless, bossy, impatient, quick on his feet and more physical than any five previous Bonds put together.

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Todd Alcott
30 May 2007 @ 01:46 am






WHO IS JAMES BOND? James Bond is having a really bad day. He's been captured by the North Koreans after trying to sell them some "conflict diamonds" in a sting operation, and he has been treated -- gasp -- the way a captured spy is generally treated in these circumstances. That is, he's been tortured and interrogated and thrown in a filthy cell, instead of being handcuffed to a nuclear bomb or dropped into a shark tank or strapped to a laser table (that comes later). This has pissed him off. The torture and confinement is probably bad enough, but to add insult to injury, when he is released by the North Koreans he looks almost exactly like Jeff Bridges in The Big Lebowski, drawing one of the most unfair invited comparisons in the history of filmmaking.

 
 
 
Todd Alcott
28 May 2007 @ 10:38 pm






mikeyed writes:

"I think what's most fascinating about Bond is the fact that he's a self-righteous, stone-cold killer. Where Zorro is more of a rebellion, in all reality, Bond is an antagonist. He's stopping the action started by these insidious Moriarty-esque characters, because he believes that his country is so absolutely right. Harry Palmer was more of an indentured servant than a true-believer, but James Bond believes in his country so much that he's willing to kill its supposed enemies that are always biting at its heels. I guess that's respectable. A man so confident in his beliefs that he can command such charisma, sexuality, and judgement with such little effort.

"About the rights thing, Holmes, Dracula, and Zorro have persisted due to its rise as popular folklore, while Bond was quickly dumped out as a character in the books, then quickly packaged as a product. He's a capitalist creation for people to profit on rather than to merely retell stories about. Bond is no dime store novel, he's more a mutli-billion dollar piggy bank than a spy thriller to its rights-holders."

_______

Well now: is Bond self-righteous? He's certainly smug, and he does move with a certain license (so to speak). But I don't know if I'd call him self-righteous. It always feels more like he's got a job to do. I sit down and try to figure out how to make a hit movie out of a board game, Bond puts on a tux and blows shit up. When the job is done he goes home -- or rather, he goes on vacation, usually in a boat, definitely someplace warm, always with a (new) girl on his arm (or under his pelvis).

 
 
 
Todd Alcott
28 May 2007 @ 02:06 am






As the sun begins to set on our analysis of Things Bond, I am again forced to ask myself the key question: What is Bond?

To begin with, how to quantify this phenomenon?  If it's a mere formula, what does that formula consist of?

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Todd Alcott
25 May 2007 @ 04:30 am





Bad news: Elektra has a medival torture chair. Good news: Dr. Jones has a wet t-shirt.

WHO IS JAMES BOND? James Bond is getting older but hanging in there. Things don't come quite so easily to him these days. Why just today he recovered $5,000,000 from some bad guys, got involved in a knife fight, dove out a high window in Bilbao, came home to London, handed the money over to its rightful owner only to find out that the money was booby-trapped, survived a massive explosion and assassination attempt, stole a speedboat, drove it through the streets of London, dangled helplessly from a stolen hot-air balloon and tumbled helplessly down the side of the Millenium Dome. In the old days, that would be a doddle for James Bond, but today he suffered an injury to his collar-bone. Ow! Hurt collar-bone!


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Todd Alcott
19 May 2007 @ 01:52 am





Yeoh, Jimbo! (sorry.)

WHO IS JAMES BOND?  James Bond is, largely, the guy he was in Goldeneye -- a little less haunted, but not kidding around, not parodying himself.  Borrowing from himself, absolutely, but not parodying.  Still good looking, masculine, knows his way around toys.  Popular with the ladies, but not known by sight all over the world.

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Todd Alcott
12 May 2007 @ 12:04 am






WHO IS JAMES BOND?
Bond, for the first time in what seems like a very long time, is actually a handsome, young, glib, charming man. Effortlessly capable, he carries the most absurdly difficult tasks with the easy heft of a favorite old backpack. The one-liners don't feel forced or leaden and one can imagine that women may actually be attracted to him.

Okay, listen. I'm a married man with two children, I'm secure enough in my sexuality that I think I can post this on my blog for all the world to see and not worry about what people will think:


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Todd Alcott
10 May 2007 @ 02:46 pm






WHO IS JAMES BOND? Bond here is presented on a more human scale than ever before. He's got friends, he goes to weddings, he hangs out, makes mistakes (sometimes big mistakes). He changes his mind about things, weighs alternatives, learns lessons. He is, apparently, now best friends with Felix Leiter, played for the first time by a returning actor, David Hedison. It's nice to see Felix played by the same actor as in Live and Let Die, as it gives the character a history he quite baldly has never had before, but it begs the question of who James Bond is then. If Felix is the Felix of Live and Let Die, why is Bond clearly not the Bond of Live and Let Die?

 
 
 
Todd Alcott
09 May 2007 @ 06:00 pm






WHO IS JAMES BOND?  James Bond is 40-ish again, which is a good thing.  He's not nearly as "cute" as he used to be -- he hardly ever arches his eyebrows or pulls silly exasperated faces any more.  When he goes in to kiss a girl, his face now stays put.  He's driven, professional, a little pissed off.  He doesn't take guff from nobody and seems less amused by his world-saving work than ever.  This is not all good -- there's something missing from a no-nonsense, professional government assassin.  If your Queen pays you to travel the world and kill people and you can't get any joy out of it, what's the point?

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