Things I liked about Skyfall
- Silva. Sure, it's not new to get the hottest foreign actor of the moment to play the villain in a blockbuster - how long before Matthias Schoenaarts is chasing down the hero in an action film? - but obvious as it is, Bardem is an inspired choice. He was Anton Chigurh for god's sake! His slimey, slithering, bleached blond Silva is more a damaged man holding a bitter grudge than a caricature of a monster like so many previous Bond villains. And Bardem, while maintaining the camp factor, gives Silva depth and personality.
- That scene where Silva shows his deformed face.
- Séverine. I mean, wow that woman is attractive.
- Roger Deakins's cinematography. The master of lighting does one of his best works yet, and anyone who's familiar with his filmography knows just what a standard he's set for himself, so that's quite high praise. He gets to show off in sequences light the neon-lit Shanghai tower or the Macau casino surrounded with dragon lanterns, but it's the subtler moments where his true genius is on display; just look at the colour palette when Bond and M get out of the Aston Martin in the Scottish highlands.
- The character driven screenplay: In theory, world domination sounds like a mightier order than getting revenge from your old boss. In practice, personal revenge keeps Skyfall grounded and makes the characters more relateable. The story feels so fresh that the usual clichés can be forgiven.
Things I didn't like about Skyfall
- Eve. She definitely won't go down in history books as one of Bond's most memorable girls. That's not to take anything away from Naomie Harris who actually shines whenever she's on the screen but it's the script that undermines her character. There's really just not enough to her, even though there's obviously potential. I guess a Bond film can't have two female characters pulling the focus and this one chose to put M front and centre.
- The title sequence, which is one of the most exciting trademarks of the franchise, was too fake (in the computer animated sense of the word) and aimless to live up to the song that was attuned to it.