Now before I talk too much about this movie, I am going to start by saying that this second installment in the revival of the tales of everyone's favorite British spy isn't as good as the first... but that's only because this is a different movie, based on a different novel. It has nothing to do with Daniel Craig's acting ability.
Now let's get down to it. The theme music: It was recorded by two artists that I generally love... but the result was less than stellar. Jack White & Alicia keyes have both written and played some really fantastic stuff, but their collaboration didn't work for me. There was nothing really WRONG with Keyes' vocals, but to me they sounded like lyrics that should have been sung by a man. The pacing of the opening songs, coupled with the graphics just made me want the song to end.
The movie opens to a big car chase, that ends well for Bond, having spectacularly dispatched several black sport-car-driving thugs who have automatic weapons. Once Bond arrives at his destination, he doesn't leave us waiting more than another three minutes before he is involved in a well-filmed foot chase, that ends in a pistol shot that makes the firearms instructor in me proud! As an aside, the MP-5 that Bond is carrying in the picture (with typical theatrical inaccuracy, doesn't make an appearance in this film, thank God).
Critics lambasted this movie as confusing (it wasn't, you just have to pay attention), critics said that there were to many set locations (there weren't, again you just have to pay attention). Critics said that Bond was too bloodthirsty (he isn't, but you have to remember, he is a trained killer. That's what killers do). To the critics, I say: Why should anyone trust a professional movie critic to be able to properly review a man-movie, especially one like this? Let's face it, most movie critics have probably never used guns, been involved in a fist-fight or brawl, and almost cretainly never made it with a really hot chick (I'm just saying, friends... and you know I'm right.)
I liked this movie. Daniel Craig, in my opinion, is the best Double-O seven since Sean Connery. Craig's Bond is sophisticated, but tough. I don't mean tough as in can be gruff and macho... I mean tough as in he'll kick your ass! Craig's Bond isn't as much about techno-gear as Roger Moore's Bond. Craig's Bond is about getting the job done with the tools at hand.
Now, our story: I'll set it up without spoilers, since this movie just came out on DVD last week. Bond has captured the mysterious Mr. White... who is the same man that Bond shot right at the beginning of "Casino Royale", so this movie begins "minutes" after the previous one ended.
Bond discovers that a new group of baddies who are as secret as they can be and have infiltrated Britain's MI-6, the Canadian CSIS, and the CIA. In natural Bond fashion, he goes around the world killing as many of the bad folks as he can, all the while getting closer and closer to the center of things. Not only does he get the people he is trying to kill, he also takes revenge on the people that were responsible for the death of Vesper Lynde, his love interest from the last movie.
This movie had all of the elements that makes people love this genre. A good looking, tough, beleivable leading man; good supporting roles (Judi Dench as M); good chase scenes; believable (mostly) gunplay; exlosions; and a few very good looking women. That's the formula, friends, and it still works.
That's enough details... I haven't told you anything that would give away any of the cools stuff from the movie. All I can say is that it was big fun, right from the start... or at least, once you get past that opening song.
OK, gotta dash, I have to pick up soccer girl from her camping trip in 16 minutes!