Monday, November 2, 2015

Double O Countdown: Die Another Day

Unfortunately, this should not take long. This was the hardest post to find seven things for since it is at the bottom of my list of Bond Films. Don't get me wrong, I will still watch this thing if I happen by it on the satellite, but I won't be proud of myself. It's too bad too because there are some great concepts, they just get swallowed up by preposterous CGI and incredulous plot points.

001  Laser Surgery

The fight between Bond and a Samoan henchman in a laser lab designed to change peoples faces if the start of too much technology getting in the way of the story. Except it does have a good money shot.

002  Screwing with tradition

Purists will squawk about it, but I enjoyed a variation on the famous gunbarrel opening.

I liked the variation of the bullet coming right at the audience. Of course it is a CGI tip off of things to come.

003  Escaping from your own side.

Bond is returned to the British in exchange for Zao, and promptly put under lock and key by M and the suspicios intelligence community that thinks he broke under pressure. He fakes a heart attack so he can use a defibrilator on his Doctors and step off a ship in Hong Kong Harbor.

Of course James Bond has the audacity to simply appear at his favorite hotel in Hong Kong, soaking wet in his pajamas and still manage to swagger. ( A characteristic the villain mocks later in the film)

A call to his tailor, a fine meal and some Bollinger and all is right with the world again.

004  Fan Service Underground

In a secret vault, in an abandonded underground station, M and Q have some more uses for 007.

M grills him about what he learned while out of their sight in Cuba, and then points him at the suspected enemy.

Before "Q" provides him with the ultimate conclusion of any credibility, we get a little tour of the vault with past souvenirs from other adventures.  If you can't make it good, at least make the fans happy.

005  Honey Ryder, 2002 Style

Mimicking the first appearance of the first Bond girl, Halle Berry shows up on the screen like Venus rising from the surf.

I don't think there is any doubt about why she is in this movie. Maybe the most beautiful Bond girl since Solitaire.

006  Insider Fan Service

The sleeper agent in Cuba offers to assist Bond and while they talk in his office, Bond casually picks up a book.
The title is the same one as a book that Ian Fleming owned. He took the name of the author for his main character because it sounded so mundane to him: James Bond.

007   Torture in more ways than one.

There are two unfortunate things about my favorite element of this movie. First, it occurs very early on in the film. In fact, the best sequence of the movie finishes just after the titles.

James Bond is caught and brutally tortured to give up information.

The last bit of North Korean cruelty is that as they exchange him for their own spy, they let him think he is being executed.

The second unfortunate thing about my favorite part of the movie is that James is not the only one being tortured here. The whole audience is subjected to an atrocious Madonna song as the Torture sequence is mixed with the title credits and song. Had they used this music, 007 would not have been able to hold out for 14 months.

James Bond will Return in "Casino Royale"

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