Quantum of Solace
By CAINE GARDNER
After a blazing fast car chase where James Bond (Daniel Craig) barely breaks a sweat, rocker Jack White's hard-hitting guitar riffs open Quantum of Solace. His duet with Alicia Keys foreshadows that fact that the viewer should expect the unexpected.
Solace is the 22nd Bond film and the second for Craig as the slick MI6 agent. With just two installments under his belt, Craig has firmly established himself as the quintessential Bond. Solace is an intensely rich thrill ride that grabs the viewer and never lets them go. It's one of the best Bond film in the franchise.
Solace begins shortly after the events of Casino Royale and a broken Bond is trying to help M (Judi Dench) and MI6 find the origins of an organization that continues to elude them. From the early going, we see that Bond is a man filled with rage over the death of his beloved Vesper and is taking down anything and everything in his path.
After M's life is put in danger, Bond travels the world, making his way to Bolivia and Italy in an attempt to track down leads to the organizations; then finally to Russia to deal with his own demons.
During his travels, he encounters Camille (Olga Kurylenko) and her association with Dominic Greene (Mathieu Amalric) proves to be the link he needs to find out what the secret organization is up to. He learns that they have been buying enormous amounts of pipeline and everyone assumes they are striking oil. The reality is more sinister than imagined and Greene's company is gaining control of a resource more valuable than oil
Like any Bond flick, it has to have its share of beautiful women. In addition to Camille, there is the stunning auburn-haired Gemma Arterton, who appropriately plays Strawberry Fields. Both actresses are strong in their respective roles, but it would have been nice to see more of Arterton.
Solace is filled with stunning locations. Director Marc Forster is a person that likes to do most everything on locations and that gives the flick an unbelievable look. The scenes that take place in Bolivia are wondrous.
The first 15 minutes of the film will literally leave you breathless, and the action continues at a breakneck pace throughout the movie. Forster is able to use tight, up close camera shots during the fast action sequences to give the illusion of lightning quick speed. Also lending to the films feeling of being authentic is the fact that the hand-to-hand fight sequences seem unchoereographed. Crashing through windowwalls and using picture frames to disarm are just a few of the cool elements of the fights.
I wasn't sure when they announced Craig as Pierce Brosnan's successor, but I find it hard to image anyone else in the role of Bond. Craig pulls off every element of the character with ease and broadens Bond into a persona that is more believable than ever. For the first time, Bond is sexy slick, yet deadly at the same time.
Final Cut: Quantum of Solace is filled with action and what it lacks at times in story, it more than makes up for in pure entertainment value. Crashing cars, beautiful women and the martini; this is definitely Bond at his finest.
Quantum of Solace
Starring: Daniel Craig, Olga Kurylenko, Judi Dench, Mathieu Amalric
Director: Marc Forster
Writer: Paul Hagis, Neal Purvis, Robert Wade
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, and some sexual content.
Available on DVD and Blu-ray now
Two-Disk Special Edition DVD
o Bond on Location: 24-minute special feature
o Start of Shooting featurette
o On Location
o Olga Kurylenko and the Boat Chase
o Director Marc Forster
o The Music
o Crew Files