Sunday, 30 December 2012
Apparently, there is/was a tradition in the UK of airing James Bond films on Christmas day. We thought we would follow suit, being big fans of tradition ourselves (#sarcasm); upon finding 1995's GoldenEye is rated PG it became our Christmas Bond of choice for viewing with our son.
GoldenEye will be remembered in the pages of history as the first of four (?) Bonds starring Pierce Brosnan, who stepped into the very small shoes left by Timothy Dalton. What mark did Brosnan leave? Well, if you ask me, while his Bonds were entertaining at the time, they completely fail the test of history. His are the least memorable James Bond (excluding the disastrous few Bonds that everyone acknowledges to be the case), and GoldenEye is a case in point. Starting from the name, actually, a name that is obviously there in order to bring back memories of Goldfinger.
The plot is quite feeble. Someone is trying to take control over a Russian satellite no one knows much about, a satellite that can destroy cities. James Bond stumbles upon the plot through luckily hitting on a beautiful woman stealing a stealthy helicopter (Famke Janssen). His only aid is Janssen's opposite, the beautiful Russian woman who is the only survivor of the satellite program after the baddies took over. What follows is a plot that is as loose as an old man's set of false teeth but is laced with nice action scenes and sprayed with comedy.
Alas, the comedy tries to mimic the Roger Moore style but fails, while the action that tries to impress with the latest in technology generally fails the test of time as a result. What we have left after all is said and done is a collection of silly scenes that never bore but never take off either. The introduction of Judi Dench as Bond's new female boss is nothing but a cheap gimmick; the result is cheap entertainment for the whole family. One can see where the Christmas tradition came from.
Best scene: Bond drives a tank through an East Europe city in search of baddies. That's Bond action at its best.
Worst scene: Janssen is deriving pleasure out of strangling her sex partners with a vice like leg grip. Who came up with this silly idea?
Worst product placement ever: It is obvious BMW paid good money to be included in the film, as made clear through Q introducing a BMW to Bond. However, that car's only appearance is limited to the single drive-through scene in friendly territory with a girl by Bond's side and an American helper's plane landing just in front of the car to deliver a message. That is really it - an entirely pointless scene that could not possibly be more artificial than it is.
Overall: I'm sorry, but this Bond - and the rest of Brosnan's - is just crap. I strongly suspect the memory of the Brosnan era would quickly fade off the Bond pages. 2.5 out of 5 stars.