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29 OCTOBER 2012 |

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Exeposé

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Newsreel Boyle wins racism libel suit Comedian Frankie Boyle has won over £54,000 in damages in a lawsuit against the Daily Mirror. Never one to shy away from controversy, the Scottish funnyman sued the tabloid for calling him a racist. Boyle donated the damages money to charity.

Pfister in Avengers storm Wally Pfister, the cinematographer responsible in part for The Dark Knight Rises, has lashed out at the “illogical form of storytelling” of rival action film Avengers Assemble. Pfister, who is currently working on his own directorial debut, called Joss Whedon’s box office smash “an appalling film”.

Colbert set for Hobbit cameo Sources close to the host of The Colbert Report have confirmed that the famous chat show host is set to make a cameo appearance in one of the films in Peter Jackson’s upcoming Hobbit trilogy. The first of the films is set to land at the end of the year.

Hugh Grant to make another rom-com In a definitely non-financially motivated career move, Love Actually star Hugh Grant has reportedly agreed to make an as of yet unnamed rom-com with director Marc Lawrence. Grant is set to play a failing screenwriter who takes a teaching job in an East Coast college.

Louis Doré, Screen Editor, reviews the latest installment in the franchise with a license to thrill

WHEN making a Bond film, there’s always pressure to fulfill the criteria associated with the hit franchise: spectacular action, a sinister villain, and an intriguingly seductive girl to name but a few. Sam Mendes must have felt this pressure, especially when you consider that Skyfall coincides with the 50th anniversary of Dr. No. Thankfully, instead of painting a dull homage to the franchise, Mendes has had the audacity to draw outside the lines. Don’t worry, it’s not a big change to the blunt instrument of MI6 you know and love, but Mendes has introduced dashes of artistry, wit and heart that were absent in Quantum of Solace. The first ten minutes are electric. Daniel Craig tentatively edges his way into a dark corridor, the only glimmer of light falling upon his bloodshot eyes and furrowed brow, instantly introducing you to the weary Bond you will accompany for the rest of the film. From the opening scene, we see that he’s a Bond who’s losing touch, not just with his skills, but with his enthusiasm and his love for the job. M (played by Judi Dench, who unashamedly steals the film) is distinctly machiavellian as

she risks Bond’s and his fellow agents’ lives more and more to tie up loose ends. She comes under increasing political

“The first ten minutes are electric” pressure as the film goes on (due to the loss of a list of agent names), to the extent that she even comes under public inquiry – think MI6 meets Leveson. This opens a rift between her and Bond, as she becomes responsible for his brush with death in the opening scene, a dynamic which evolves to an emotional level unrivalled in any previous Bond film. The action is frankly astounding as Craig leaps from mechanical digger to a mutilated train, having already chased the enemy on motorbike over the rooftops of Istanbul – yes, rooftops. Mendes’s precise eye for a shot combined with Craig’s amazing technical stunt skills (at one point he easily dispatches five enemies at close quarters without a weapon within a second, more than convincingly) suits the grittier nature of this film – you feel it all. The sheer physicality of the stunts combined with the earthiness of the explosions make you feel each punch and burst of fire in your navel, so much so that when Bond is subjected to a seductive straight razor shave later on, you fear for his life as blade scrapes across cheek. In fact, the whole film’s attention to detail is incredible, not just in the exquisite soundtrack that unashamedly

manipulates your emotions, but in the little moments on screen that help you live the film. Whether it’s noticing M’s slightly askew teardrop necklace as she panics at each new revelation, or the condescending nature of scotch being handed to her in talks of her resignation, Mendes delicately shows rather than pushes details in your face, a welcome change from the obvious nature of QoS (yawn). The eye for environment is also exquisite; the bleak grey streets of London match M’s countenance, and the murky fog of Scotland depicts a last hideout for a broken MI6, all captured in remarkable detail and care, creating a genuine visual treat. Speaking of visual ecstasy, the opening credits are delicious - if I could hang them on loop in a frame, I would. All this artistry, however, is useless without a convincing villain and plot, which are both conveniently supplied by Javier Bardem’s chillingly touching depiction of an ex-agent back for revenge. His opening scene instils him as perhaps one of the most subversive and terrifying Bond villains ever. On the surface he is assured, flirtatious, friendly, even. His true nature as a sinister villain taking glee in superiority is quickly and brutally unveiled, however, and you soon forget the humorous back and forth between himself and Bond that had previously reassured you so much. Indeed, the dialogue is one of this film’s strengths, not so much in the pre-scripted one-liners (which are still more hit than miss), but more in the emotional exchanges between Dench

and Craig. The witty exchanges are also insightful, Craig noticeably commenting that it is a “brave new world” having been introduced to the ingenious new Q (ingenious in this case referring to both character and actor Ben Whishaw), as the new MI6 struggles with new staff and an evolving new threat - cyberterrorism. While this film continues the evolution of the Bond series from continued iterations of a formula based around cheesy one-liners and boyish gadgets to a significantly more poignant series based around Bond’s ever changing characterisation and discussions of what resource drives the world, one can’t help but notice a few pitfalls it fails to swerve. The character of Severine is a good if limited character sketch, simply due to a lack of screen time. Similarly, while Raoul Silva (Bardem) is an incredibly adept villain, capable of launching tube trains at Bond, he remains vengeful on a solely psychopathic level, rather than causing disaster on such a great scale as previous instalments; Bond isn’t saving the world, he’s saving M and the administration of MI6. Skyfall is a fantastic Bond film, but not for the reasons that previously validated the franchise. Craig is an emotional, tortured soul of a Bond; the nonchalant days of Brosnan are long gone. Skyfall, with its nuance, drama, and stars of the franchise’s future, definitely takes the Bond franchise in a different direction; I for one like where we’re headed.

Suits, sex, and shooting baddies: the men who have played Bond Owen Keating, Screen Editor, takes you through the six men who have been 007 SEAN CONNERY - This silk-throated Scotsman is, for many, the iconic James Bond. Maybe it was the athleticism, maybe it was the accent, maybe it was the handsomeness, but men wanted to be him and women wanted to be with him. Tens of thousands of fan letters a week don’t lie; Connery is arguably the greatest Bond ever.

GEORGE LAZENBY - In stark contract to his predecessor, Lazenby’s forgettable tenure as 007 was marred by controversy. After being spotted in a hairdressers, and winning the role in part by accidentally punching a stuntman, Lazenby’s performance in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service was less than spectacular.

ROGER MOORE - The longest serving Bond, Moore made a total of seven films for the franchise. Moore is inextricably linked to Bond’s 70s reboot to a suave, enigmatic playboy, in order to fit with what it was deemed the audience wanted. It certainly worked, with 62 percent of people voting him to be the best Bond in a 2004 Academy Awards poll.

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2012/13 Week 6 Issue 599  

Students are struck by a spate of attacks in Exeter, and we launch our Save Our Sreetlights campaign. Screen review the new Bond film, while...

2012/13 Week 6 Issue 599  

Students are struck by a spate of attacks in Exeter, and we launch our Save Our Sreetlights campaign. Screen review the new Bond film, while...

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