The 23rd Bond film is worth seeing during this 50th Anniversary year, especially for those who know the franchise well. There are plenty of nostalgic moments in the film, including the first Bond car, returning to Istanbul for shooting, and another great Bond girl.
While the cast has seen many turnovers, like the fourth Q being played by Ben Whishaw, the film has seen the return of Academy Award winner Judi Dench reprising her role as M for the 7th time and Daniel Craig as Bond for his 3rd film. The number of films for each of the Bond men are as follows:
- Connery – 6
- Lazenby – 1
- Moore – 7
- Dalton – 2
- Brosnan – 4
- Craig – 3 (with options for 2 more)
Bond is the longest running franchise in history and is expected to be in the top 20 of similar movies including the Bourne, Mission Impossible, Die Hard and Batman franchises. The film was released first overseas and has brought in $518.6MM worldwide. Opening night in America saw $33MM at the box office and a total of $87.8MM for the weekend. The film out performed analyst’s expectations by 10%.
The movie was well constructed and lived up to most fan’s expectations for a 50th anniversary edition. The action was heightened and the stunts far more elaborate. In fact, the stunt team had to work with animatics and rehearsal videos to help the director understand the complexities of the choreographed stunts, which led to very believable action sequences.
The motorcycle stunts were the most amazing in the film. My favorite was the chase scene across the rooftops in Istanbul, which easily rivaled the roof top scenes in Casino Royale. Another great moment was Bond purposely ramming into the side of the bridge, allowing the motorcycle’s momentum to propel him through the air and onto the train where the bad guy had leaped to during his escape.