It's been a long time since I enjoyed a Bond movie so much.
'Quantum of Solace,' was a dour, dire letdown. This picture's a substantial bounce back, and easily the best Craig Bond picture. Emotional depth and all.
| Original Score: 4.5/5
The cool accomplishment of Skyfall, 23rd in the Broccoli franchise, is that it seems a necessary, rather than mandatory, addition to the year's popular culture.
Among the most ambitious imaginings of Bond to date: dark, supple, and punctuated with moments of unanticipated visual brilliance.
Mendes' approach to action is classical and elegant - no manic editing and blurry unintelligible images here - but what makes the movie special is the attention he pays his actors.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
"Skyfall" is a different kind of Bond movie, one that works just fine on its own terms, but a steady diet of this might kill the franchise. One "Skyfall" is enough.
| Original Score: 3/4
Great heroes are often enhanced by the villains they face, and such is the situation here. To really work, Bond needs great bad guys. Silva is bad at its best.
| Original Score: B+
Skyfall leaves you wondering whether this incarnation of the character has anywhere left to go. It's the portrait of a spy at the end of his rope by an actor who seems close to his.
The movie's smartest suit is emotional intelligence: Skyfall keeps us caring, intensely, for a hero who, by any rational measure, is a vestige of a vanished era.
This is the movie in which the newest Bond finally eases into the part of the bon vivant for-Queen-and-Country horndog who likes his martinis shaken and not stirred.
The director, Sam Mendes, has taken a pop concept and solemnized it with Freud, which is not, perhaps, the best way of turning Bond into grownup entertainment.
Craig has settled into a well-suited, grim-reaper role. Even when James flirts and trysts, his creased face suggests an unmovable weight.
Daniel Craig, in his third outing as 007, has taken over the role in a way that makes it his as distinctively as it was Sean Connery's all those years ago.
| Original Score: A-
What a difference 50 years makes. It might sound blasphemous, but in Skyfall Daniel Craig has it all over previous 007s.
There's a gritty, real-world feel to Skyfall that makes good use of Craig's down-to-earthiness.
This is a smashing entertainment, but also one that feels over-engineered and constrained by its origins.
While "Skyfall" obviously has a great fondness for the past, it's not trapped there. It also anticipates Bond's future. In this immensely satisfying movie, so do we.
Skyfall is certainly the most cultured Bond film to come along in some time. It's also the first of the three Craig endeavors to seriously (and wittily) acknowledge its pedigree.
The James Bond franchise turns 50 with a stellar entry that fires on all cylinders as an action picture but also casts a modest glance backward to its illustrious past.
This is Bond like you've never seen him and a dynamite Daniel Craig, never better in the role, nails Bond's ferocity and feeling. Skyfall is smashing, just smashing.
With spectacular action sequences, a rock-solid star and a ration of cheese that's good English cheddar, "Skyfall" is a gift from above.
From the first smoky notes of a theme song sung by Adele, it's clear that "Skyfall" will be both classic and of-the-moment.
Skyfall doesn't forget it has to be an exciting spy film above all, but from its first scene, it ratchets up the drama in ways that have little to do with action.
This is a full-blooded, joyous, intelligent celebration of a beloved cultural icon, with Daniel Craig taking full possession of a role he previously played unconvincingly.
| Original Score: 4/4
This is perhaps the most visually stunning Bond movie ever made.
The movie makes a claim that can't be matched by many Bond films: It's actually about something.
Skyfall's fatal misstep is its slavish hewing to event-movie trends.
In "Skyfall," Mendes has given us a thrilling new chapter in a franchise that by all rights should have been gasping for air - which really makes him the hero of this saga.
| Original Score: 4/5
If, on paper, this sounds like business as usual for 007, Skyfall feels like anything but.
Whether Mr. Mendes is deploying an explosion or a delectable detail, he retains a crucially human scale and intimacy, largely by foregrounding the performers.
| Original Score: 3.5/5
Some of it is terrific. And some of it is spectacular.
Bond is back, and so is high-octane entertainment.
I'm happy to report that Bond is back, and he's bad. And that's good.
The stripped-down, slightly grittier feel of the movie carries us along - and, perhaps, even announces a direction for the series that's both new to young fans and as old as "From Russia With Love."
The 23rd official Bond seems as fresh as the first, incorporating tradition with innovation in gratifying ways.
This is a brilliant reboot of the canon, mixing a sense of melancholy, the shock of changing times and the darkness of loss with thrillingly staged chase and fight scenes and clever references to all that has come before.
Skyfall has the feel of both a ceremonial commemoration and a franchise-rebooting celebration ...
Skyfall can take its place alongside From Russia with Love, Goldfinger, and On Her Majesty's Secret Service as the best Bond can offer.
Mendes and Deakins are so busy trying to be visionary that they don't notice that characters are wandering too far from their roots, and half the time you can't see what's going on.
| Original Score: 2/4
These are truly tedious stakes for an action movie. The franchise isn't worried about world safety. It's fretting over whether to start wearing Depends.
Casino Royale remains the best of the recent Bonds, with Skyfall just a notch below it.
A super-suave but softer Bond, with Craig barely wrinkling his gorgeous suits. Bardem, as a dandyish villain, works up a good, greasy sweat.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
"Skyfall" is so good you almost forget it is a James Bond movie.
Simultaneously thrilling and meaty, this is easily one of the best entries ever in the 50-year, 23-film series, led once again by an actor who's the best Bond yet in Daniel Craig.
Conveys the melancholy of loss, mortality, and future-shock anxiety, while at the same time leaving us plenty of space to enjoy one of the most complexly unhinged villains in Bond history.
| Original Score: A
Suffice to say, Skyfall is one of the best Bonds in the 50-year history of moviedom's most successful franchise.
Though a notch below "Royale," "Skyfall" follows that reboot's lead, making a now 50-year-old icon as cool as when he began.
A Bond movie that boldly struts forward while looking back over its shoulder to the past.
Putting the "intelligence" in MI6, Skyfall reps a smart, savvy and incredibly satisfying addition to the 007 oeuvre.
Feels more seriously connected to real-world concerns than any previous entry, despite the usual outlandish action scenes, glittering settings and larger-than-life characters.