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First tabloid review of `Quantum of Solace`, likely to be bogus

26-Sep-2008 • Quantum Of Solace

The first alleged review of the upcoming 22nd James Bond film "Quantum of Solace" has been printed by taboid newspaper The Sun

Unfortunately, the 'review' is light on details and spends most of the text reiterating old news. The lines quotes are from the teaser trailer. The description of the plot is a re-wording of the official synopsis. All other 'tidbits' have already been reported and are in the public domain. The 'sneak' even asks questions which would have been answered if they had actually seen the film.

Last time around, The Sun claimed to have the first review of Casino Royale, which turned out to be full of inaccuaracies.

This 'world exclusive' is at best a collection of known facts and spoilers already published online. Unfortunately, many fansites are promoting the piece as a genuine review.

"Licence to kill... and kill and kill" - 'World Exclusive' review - The Sun.

Eight months after the name of the 22nd James Bond film was announced, The Sneak was still struggling to remember it. The limp Quantum Of Solace just wouldn’t stick. But all that changed after I went undercover to infiltrate a top-secret screening of the new 007 flick. Daniel Craig’s second outing as the world’s most famous secret agent is something you won’t forget in a hurry.

The actor transformed suave Bond into a gritty killing machine in 2006 hit Casino Royale and here the violence is ramped up to Rambo proportions. More appropriate titles might have been A View To A Killing Spree or Triggerfinger. The Sneak would like to give you a figure on the body count . . . but it was impossible to keep score.

The film kicks off with Bond in the car chase of his life as his Aston Martin DB9 is pursued through the narrow cliff-top lanes of the Italian Lakes. A Bourne Ultimatum-style rooftop chase follows, with the famous Palio Horse Race as a stunning backdrop. The stunts look dangerous for good reason — they are.

One driver is still recovering from head injuries after crashing into a wall filming the cliff-top chase. Another had a narrow escape after skidding off a cliff into a lake. And Craig needed eight stitches in his face after a fight scene and he had the top of a finger sliced off.

It’s a miracle anyone survived filming long enough for Bond to kill them in the movie. Solace is the first 007 sequel, it picks up directly from where Casino Royale left off. Bond is out to get revenge for the death of his lover Vesper Lynd (Eva Green) at any cost. But his path of destruction leads him to the discovery of a new threat to the world, crime syndicate Quantum. With spies everywhere, even within MI6, they pose an even greater danger than his old arch foes at SPECTRE.

Quantum’s mastermind is billionaire environmentalist Dominic Greene (French actor Mathieu Amalric), who uses a campaign to save swathes of rainforest as a cover for his evil plan.

As Bond battles his new enemies we follow his journey from his promotion to 007 agent (one kill needed) in the last film to First Blood-style rampages. However, newcomers may be confused by references to old characters and plot lines.

Vesper’s hold on Bond is not fully explained, nor is the return of Mathis (Giancarlo Giannini), Bond’s friend turned foe turned who knows? Bond’s long list of enemies also gets complicated. He is so reckless in his blood lust that the CIA agree to kill him when he threatens their dealings with a South American government. One spymaster quips: “If we refused to do business with villains, we would have no one left.” Meanwhile, 007’s boss M (Judi Dench) says: “Bond, if you could avoid killing every lead there is, that would be appreciated.” He dryly replies, “I will do my best” then heads off in designer suits to slay some more. Things get so bad that M revokes his licence to kill.

Some might say Craig’s portrayal of the spy as an increasingly cold, emotionless character is a brave move. In The Sneak’s opinion, the old-style Bonds of Connery, Moore and Brosnan are too tame for 21st-century tastes.

Here the notches on his gun far outnumber the notches on his bedpost. Only once — sorry, girls — do we see Craig with his top off. There are two sexy Bond girls in the curvy shapes of Camille (Olga Kurylenko) and MI6 agent Fields (Gemma Arterton). But the only flash of flesh in the 105-minute movie is a very quick nookie scene with Fields. The smartass quips and camp gadget-king Q have also been axed. And for the first time the immortal line “The name’s Bond, James Bond” is not used.

Topical environmental references abound, with baddies manipulating fears over climate change. Though Bond’s carbon footprint would make Greenpeace activists cry. He goes from the UK to Italy to Bolivia to Austria, back to Italy, across to Haiti and finally to Russia.

The predominant colour here, though, isn’t environmental green — it’s blood red. Which is a surprise since new 007 director Marc Forster is better known for more thoughtful films such as The Kite Runner and Finding Neverland. Here Forster has followed the standard sequel route of blowing up bigger stuff. Our hero writes off a fleet of cars, blows up a helicopter and military jetfighter, destroys a cargo plane and several boats and, well . . . you get the idea.

So this film is not as ground-breaking as Casino Royale. But it will kick the living daylights out of any rival action-hero franchises.

Thanks to `Jack Wade` & `Phil` for the alert.

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