Monday, May 21, 2012

James Bond Gets a Psyche Evaluation in the Teaser Trailer for ‘Skyfall’

As far as reboots go, Casino Royale was a damned good one.  It gave the world a James Bond that was every bit the modern action hero. Sullen and strictly business, Daniel Craig clearly did not enjoy his work in the same way that previous Bonds had.  Unfortunately, Quantum of Solace erased all the goodwill generated by its predecessor.  As a result, I haven’t exactly been counting the days until Skyfall’s release.  What’s more, I didn’t expect the teaser trailer to change that position one iota.  Having now seen it, I can gladly say that the film in question is now on my radar.

The Skyfall teaser begins in a slow, almost serene fashion.  A montage of Bond in a number of picturesque locations unfolds as a therapist plays a word association game with him.  The motif is fitting seeing as how Daniel Craig’s Bond clearly has some issues.  At the halfway point, the music becomes more forceful and the images more colorful.  Bond seems more in his element, though still impenetrably sullen.  There are a few brief action shots shown in somber colors, which make the most “exciting” part of Bond’s work seem disarmingly sad.  It’s a curious choice, to say the least. 

Random imagery attached to overdone music has become de rigueur for today’s teaser trailers, especially when it comes to action films.  Here, that particular mode of advertising is used as showcase for the abilities of director Sam Mendes.  He’s a superb visual stylist, and clearly means to make us see Ian Fleming’s creation in a striking new way.  I certainly hope Skyfall has more to offer than that, but seeing as how film is a visual medium, Mendes has already won half the battle.

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