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Falling for Skyfall

Being fifty-something, I love when a movie “speaks” to me.

You know … when the screenplay contains so many elements you love and connect with that it feels a little like the writer and director reached inside your head, plucked your favourite things and wrapped them in a brown paper packaged movie (tied up with string).

… when you legitimately forget where you are (for just a moment)

… when the cinema narrows and feels like it’s just you and the story.

I haven’t come to expect that from a Bond movie, even though I’ve always enjoyed the action, the glamour and the brilliant cinematography. With Skyfall, I got much more than I anticipated.

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Beneath the omnipresent good versus evil premise was a sub-plot posing a topical-to-me question about M, Bond’s female “boss” played by Dame Judi Dench. Had she passed her use-by-date?  Could she still cut it in the tough world of international espionage?

Skyfall M

Very relevant questions for fifty-something boomers and midlifers, methinks.

How affirming that pouting Daniel Craig (I mean James Bond) deems M worthy of fighting for, indeed worthy of risking his life for.

Sigh.

The Bond movie action moves from the rooftops of Istanbul’s bazaars, to London to one of my favourite locations … the barren highlands of Scotland, complete with a bleak stone mansion reminiscent of Wuthering Heights.

I haven’t travelled much at all but if I had just one golden ticket left, I’d more than likely choose to revisit Scotland, where you can feel the history and tradition in the very ground on which you walk … and, if you listen really carefully, hear Mel Gibson, (I mean William Wallace) imploring: “They may take our lives, but they’ll never take our freedom!”

Sigh again.

And then came the deal-closer-for-me in this latest of the Bond franchise offerings … my favourite quote from a favourite poem.

During a climactic scene characterised by fast cut-and-shut editing, Dame Judi delivered the following excerpt from Alfred Lord Tennyson’s epic Ulysses:

“One equal temper of heroic hearts,

Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will

To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.”

Rapid intake of breath.

I may have lip-synced the piece along with Judi.

Hell, I may have echoed the words out loud. Right there in the theatre. Just because I could.

I studied that poem in my final year of high school and credit it with opening my mind to the power of words. I have carried that quote close with me ever since. The strength and simplicity of that final line fascinates me.

And now, thanks to a collection of my favourite things, so do Bond movies.

Then the kicker (there’s always a kicker) … with the final credits a logo popped up celebrating “50 Years of Bond”.

Now I get it. Bond is fifty-something. We have a special affinity. That’s why we feel so close.

And I haven’t even mentioned Adele’s singing, or the dreamy new Q or the cameo by Bond’s original Aston Martin.

Sigh.

Bond movie marathon anyone?

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6 thoughts on “Falling for Skyfall

  1. We saw it last week and thought it was amazing! Mr A said it was the best Bond movie ever. Apparently Daniel Craig has signed on for two more movies… don’t know how they will top this one though.

  2. I love it (especially daniel Craig and his amazing suits). It’s hard to choose between this one and Casino Royal just for throwing us all into the new era of Bond.

    1. Daniel Craig is all over a great suit, isn’t he? Even with bullet holes and near-drowning in an icy loch, he comes up dapper. If this is the new era of Bond, can’t wait to see the next one. 🙂

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