Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Quantum of Solace (6/10)

A Quantum Failure!

Reinventing a successful franchise is never easy. The makers of 'Quantum of Solace' have proved this by trying to redefine James Bond, and failing miserably. The re-invention that started with 'Casino Royale' comes to a jarring halt in this instalment. While 'Casino Royale' made a decent fist of this daunting task, 'Quantum of Solace' is extremely disappointing in almost every aspect.

Where to start? The plot, or rather the more-than-usual-flimsy storyline, which passes for a plot in Bond movies, involves a mysterious organization 'Quantum' that has tentacles everywhere, is trying to take over control of a natural resource, water, and de-stabilizing the world in the bargain. Unfortunately for them, they crossed James Bond's path, and so of course, mayhem ensues. No need to explain too many things because this is James Bond, after all. It doesn't have to make perfect sense. Suffice to say that theres plenty of action, adrenaline, big bangs, pursuits over land, water and air, and a tour of half the world.

Now, the problems. While the Bond movies have never traditionally made sense, what they had in common was the protrayal of Bond as this ultra-chic, super-suave, charming spy who doesn't need to work too hard; a perfect case in point being Pierce Brosnan, whose immaculate hair and tux are never affected, whether he's fighting the baddies, or riding cars, fighter jets or even tanks. With Daniel Craig this super-cool persona has been dropped and Bond has become more human, or to put it bluntly, normal.

The attempt of the movie makers was obviously to fuse the Bond charisma with the Bourne canniness, thus getting the best of both worlds. Unfortunately, this backfired big time. This bond has neither the suaveness, coolness and elegance of Brosnan, nor the lethal efficiency of Jason Bourne. Where Bourne's every move is clearly thought-out and executed flawlessly, Criag's Bond seems to do things for no apparent reason and continuously gets lucky (and I don't mean just in bed).

The action sequences borrow so heavily from the Bourne series that some of the ripoffs are embarassingly blatant. Daniel Craig, undoubtedly a good actor, just doesn't have the aura of control that Matt Damon protrays, nor does he possess the charms of Pierce Brosnan. His attempts to make Bond more human just reveal the too many flaws in the storyline. Ultimately, he ends up dragging Bond down to the level of an average, unspectacular spy.

A disappointing movie.

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