A cinematic masterpiece or an out and out sexist Bond?
NB: SPOILERS. Do not read if you haven’t already seen Skyfall (and don’t want to ruin it.)
On the one hand, I completely and absolutely loved Skyfall. It was sexy and savvy, it was old-school Bond mixed with new style gadgets and fresh new faces. For example Q, played by Ben Whishaw, brought a new face to the ‘technical’ side of Bond, becoming not a sexy new agent, but one for the nerd-loving girls in the audience. Then there’s Eve, played by Naomie Harris of 28 Days Later fame. Eve begins as a field agent but then retreats to a desk after the opening scene. I don’t think we need to mention Judi Dench or Daniel Craig who have been unfailingly amazing throughout the Bond saga.
Let’s briefly talk about the antagonist, again using someone from Bond’s past, Silva, a disgraced agent, presumed dead, rises to take down M who swapped his name for six other agents. M, who is being asked to resign, witnesses the MI6 building being blown up and vowing to avenge the agents who died in the explosion doesn’t stand down until the ‘job is done.’ Silva, hiding out on an island off the mainland of China, is revealed to be a computer (and general) genius who plans to be captured and taken to M, who he wishes to destroy. A slick plot, with very little holes- and the holes it does have I am willing to let go of.
Enter Bond Girl.
Now, for the sheer ammount of posters I’ve seen of Berenice Marlohe (Severine in Skyfall) I thought there would be more of her. She’s in maybe five scenes and of those scene’s she’s either being wooed, sexed or killed. I guess this point brings me nicely onto…
In some ways, I came out of Skyfall expecting my boyfriend to say he loved it (which he did) and anticipating an argument about the blatant sexism that’s apparent in all Bond movies. However, there wasn’t that much of an argument because who can argue with what we’re all expecting? Hot (and sometimes very intelligent) women who categorically fall at Bond’s feet.
This movie’s Bond Girl. An ex-prostitue (not by her own will) who was taken in my Silva and upon meeting Bond asks him to kill Silva for her. Bond then promptly lays her and the next time we see her she’s tied up and Silva kills her. End of that character. Bond shows little remorse or surprise.
I thought this character would redeem the females in Skyfall, but after shooting Bond in the opening she takes a desk job and stays there (with of course an interlude to imply sex with Bond.) Then, right at the end when it would have been a perfect time for her to declare that the shock ending had prompted her to get back into the field, but alas she stays in her desk job and suprise suprise, she turns out to be Eve Moneypenny. Which totally ruined the character for me. If you’re a field agent you don’t become someone’s secretary.
Now, of course M is the head of the MI6, a powerful woman with command over all the agents including Bond. However, in this Bond which was centered around M’s retirement, she looses something and relies entirely on Bond to save her. I thought that maybe she would redeem herself by being the one to kill Silva, but that’s Bond too. Then she dies. So in the end 2 die and one becomes a secretary to the new M, who is male.
Okay the Prime Minister is also a woman but she’s a cow.
Okay so there is one badass chick who makes it into Skyfall, and that’s Adele. The soundtrack to this new Bond really is something else. Using the old music of 007 and the new Skyfall track the music really did make me do that little squeal noise I do when I’m excited at the movies. Also, Daniel Craig: still hot.
All in all Skyfall really is excellent, I guess I shouldn’t expect the Bond movies to change just because this is the 21st Century and women can like, VOTE and shit. What women need now is their very own Bond. A new Buffy who kicks man ass. Come on Mendes, give me some fem fetal!