Is there solace in revenge? James Bond (Daniel Craig) and M (Dame Judi Dench) sniff a shadowy international network of power and corruption reaping billions. As Bond pursues the agents of an assassination attempt on M, all roads lead to Dominic Greene (Mathieu Amalric), a world-renowned developer of green technology. Greene, a nasty piece of work, is intent on securing a barren area of Bolivia in exchange for assisting a strongman stage a coup there. The C.I.A. looks the other way, and only Bond, with help from a retired spy and from a mysterious beauty, stands in Greene's way. M wonders if she can trust Bond, or if vengeance possesses him. Beyond that, can anyone drawn to Bond live to tell the tale?Written by
While this movie was in pre-production, some filming of background shots occurred during August 2007, long before principal photography was scheduled to start. This was because of the Palio di Siena Horse Race, which forms the opening to a chase sequence through the medieval architectural town of Siena, and its famed Bottini underground aqueduct, which evokes From Russia with Love (1963) and its Basilica Cistern. See more »
When Mathis is dying in Bond's arms, there is a quick cut that goes from Mathis looking up at Bond, to having his head resting on Bond, back to looking up at him. See more »
Carabinieri on Radio:
Station from Patrol 48 - grey Aston Martin followed by a black Alfa Romeo driving towards the quarries. Gunshot fire.
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The iconic "James Bond gun barrel" sequence, not seen in its traditional format since Die Another Day, is incorporated into the closing credits. See more »
Following an advisory screening of a rough cut, the film was pre-cut on BBFC advice in the UK before official submission to the Board for a formal cinema classification, with edits made to one scene in the finale. It was subsequently passed "uncut" as a 12A. More detailed notes can be found on the BBFC's website. Worldwide versions are this same pre-cut version. See more »
Shoddily directed and horrifically edited, but not a total misfire.
Quantum was my least favorite Bond movie for quite some time. After the over-ambitious Spectre, I look back at Quantum with fondness due to its simplicity. Not necessarily in its plot, but in its treatment of Bond as a character and his coming to terms with Vesper's death. It's an epilogue to Casino Royale. Bond is hellbent on revenge, and it's fun to watch that side of Bond every once in a while - it's like a discount Jason Bourne movie, and that's fine by me. Daniel Craig is great as always, as is Judi Dench and the rest of the supporting cast. The problems with Quantum lie mainly in the directing and editing.
The film opens with a car chase; Bond is being perused by thugs. Why? We find out later, but the fact that we have no information at the start makes it really hard to care about the action that's happening. On top of that, the camera is moving and cutting every half-second, it's nearly impossible to tell what's happening. This is consistent throughout the film, and it almost ruins the movie for me. It's genuinely awful.
We're eventually led to our Bond Girl Camille, who is one of the better Bond Girls actually, and she leads Bond to our main villain, Dominic Greene - a businessman who wants to buy a pipeline to steal Bolivia's water supply. Not exactly a James Bond-level threat, is it? Greene is not an intimidating villain whatsoever, nor is his henchmen Elvis, who is possibly the worst character in the history of cinema, and that's not even an exaggeration. He has a bowl cut and has no interaction with Bond at all. At least Greene has a creepy look in his eye. He's no match for Bond physically in any sense, but their final confrontation is entertaining if only to watch Greene yelp as he's swinging an axe for dear life trying to avoid Bond's fists while his fuel cell-ridden desert hotel explodes behind them. It's a good sequence, and the only standout moment in the film.
The rest plays out like a standard revenge story. Camille wants revenge against General Medrano for killing her family, and Bond wants revenge for Vesper by going after the organization that was blackmailing her. The writing is serviceable, especially considering the writer's strike; it could've been much worse. Where the movie fails is in its directing. It's pretentious and tonally clashes with the dark character study of Bond that the script is going for. It's a shame because there is a lot of promise here. I like the disconnected, emotionally torn Bond. He's kind of a dick, and I like that. He has good chemistry with Camille throughout. Again, if a good director was behind Quantum, I'm sure I would've enjoyed it much more.
What we have here is a Bond-Bourne hybrid that takes itself too seriously to be fun, and doesn't have enough great action to hold your interest. However, it has an intriguing plot, and it's nice to see a low-stakes Bond movie every now and then. It's not the worst Bond movie (bottom 5 maybe), but it's unique enough to be watchable if you're able to look past the editing.
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