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Skyfall                                                        Skyfall US Theatrical Poster

Release Date:  26th October 2012 (UK)

Running Time: 143 mins.

Director: Sam Mendes

Writer: Robert Wade, Neal Purvis, John Logan, Ian Fleming (Original Characters)

Starring: Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Naomie Harris, Bérénice Marlohe, Albert Finney, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Whishaw, Rory Kinnear

Skyfall comes at an interesting time as it marks the 50th year of the Bond franchise and it follows the disastrous Quantum of Solace which. Skyfall has to be good as it is under assault from modern spies like Jason Bourne who just feel more relevant. How good is it?


Istanbul, James Bond (Craig) is on assignment with fellow field agent Eve (Harris) tracking down a computer hard drive which contains the identity of almost every NATO agent embedded in terrorist cells around the globe. Things go wrong when Bond is wounded and falls into a river leaving M (Dench), back in London, with an agent down and major security headache all while she is being pressured into retirement by the Parliamentary security committee chairman Gareth Mallory (Fiennes). Then MI6 headquarters is attacked during a cyber-terrorist assault on British Intelligence. With events spiralling out of M’s control Bond comes back, joining forces with the new Q (Whishaw), to track down the person behind the attack, first heading to Shanghai then to Macau where he meets Severin (Marlohe), a woman who knows about the plot and how it is linked to a man named Raoul Silva (Bardem).

I have to admit that I am not the biggest fan of Bond. Despite being British and having watched every film in the franchise I always found the fantasy elements and the thin characters rather dull. There was never any sense of jeopardy and the stories were increasingly irrelevant. I soon switched to the Bourne trilogy of films. When Casino Royale was released it introduced a new Bond in the form of Daniel Craig and it replaced the silly gadgets and outlandish plots with gritty realism and gripping character drama. I loved it. Then A Quantum of Solace was released, a film that had a lot on character but awful action, a boring villain and a dull plot. Once again I lost interest. Thankfully Skyfall manages to resurrect the franchise by bringing everything back to basics, back to M and MI6 and back to Bond himself.

Skyfall Bond (Craig)

The film feels more relevant than other Bonds. Gone are the invisible cars and exploding pens and in comes a cyber-terrorism plot linked to the characters and Britain’s history. While a bit fantastical it is less far-fetched than the franchise is used to.

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The Adventures of Tintin: Secret of the Unicorn 3D

The Adventures of Tintin Secret of the Unicorn - BannerNo healthy European childhood is complete without the adventures of the young globe-trotting journalist Tintin and his dog Snowy. I own a few of his comic book adventures and still remember so many details from them. As a kid (and even now) I find the stories are so much more interesting and humorous than anything most American comics produce so a new 3D CGI film from one of America’s greatest directors is an interesting prospect. As a fan I could not miss this.

Young journalist Tintin (Jamie Bell) buys a model of a 17th Century ship named the Unicorn, the source of fantastic legends. Hidden inside the ship is a clue to a great mystery involving a lost fortune and pirates. Also on the trail of the treasure is Ivan Ivanovitch Sakharine (Daniel Craig), a model ship collector with dark secrets. Tintin and his faithful dog, Snowy, embark on a quest that unites him with drunken seadog Captain Haddock (Andy Serkis) whose ancestor Sir Francis Haddock was Captain of the Unicorn and with help from the Thompson twins (Simon Pegg and Nick Frost) they unravel a historical globe-spanning mystery.

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