|Quantum of Solace (Two-Disc Special Edition)
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Studio: Tcfhe/mgm Release Date: 03/24/2009 Run time: 107 minutes Rating: Pg13
Daniel Craig hasn't lost a step since Casino Royale--this James Bond remains dangerous, a man who could earn that license to kill in brutal hand-to-hand combat… but still look sharp in a tailored suit. And Quantum of Solance itself carries on from the previous film like no other 007 movie, with Bond nursing his anger from the Casino Royale storyline and vowing blood revenge on those responsible. For the new plot, we have villain Mathieu Amalric (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly), intent on controlling the water rights in impoverished Third World nations and happy to overthrow a dictator or two to get his way. Olga Kurylenko is very much in the "Bond girl" tradition, but in the Ursula Andress way, not the Denise Richards way. And Judi Dench, Jeffrey Wright, and Giancarlo Giannini are welcome holdovers. If director Marc Forster and the longtime Bond production team seem a little too eager to embrace the continuity-shredding style of the Bourne pictures (especially in a nearly incomprehensible opening car chase), they nevertheless quiet down and get into a dark, concentrated groove soon enough. And the theme song, "Another Way to Die," penned by Jack White and performed by him and Alicia Keys, is actually good (at times Keys seems to be channeling Shirley Bassey--nice). Of course it all comes down to Craig. And he kills. --Robert Horton
- Quantum of Solace James Bond DVD
Frankly, it's a dead loss. Lots of action, but very disjointed plot. Hard to follow. ...more info
- Missing so much of what made `Casino Royale' so unexpectedly brilliant...
I may be extra harsh on this film because `Casino Royale' was such a blessed cinematic experience for me. I was not in the least a huge fan of James Bond, but 2006 totally changed my opinion when it unleashed the brilliance that was `Casino Royale' (ranks in my top ten of the year and garners a Lead Actor and an Adapted Screenplay nomination from me at my personal awards, The Ellington's). Because that film was so cleverly crafted, I expected a lot from `Quantum of Solace'.
I wanted it to be bigger, bolder...better.
Instead of building off the intensity provided by deep character development and genuine attachment to plot points, `Quantum of Solace' goes in a different direction and just merely offers the audience a briskly paced thrill ride with hard bodies and `Bourne' style action sequences. I'm not saying that a good action flick is a bad thing, but when you have such a wonderful starting point it is disappointing to see them somewhat throw away all that they worked to achieve by reverting backwards and delivering something that just doesn't stack up.
The films plot seems a little underdeveloped (the film is also about an hour shorter than `Casino Royale', which may be part of the problem) and so it becomes almost forgettable. This is sad, because the film doesn't provide us with the character development needed to make the films plot unnecessary. Daniel Craig does a fine job presenting us with a sour Bond, one that doesn't really need to develop because we saw him grow to this point so lavishly in `Casino Royale', but Craig is not the only actor here and Bond is not the only character. The sad thing is that Bond is the only interesting one. Vesper was such an exciting Bond Girl, and so when I see someone as beautifully dense as Olga Kurylenko's, Camille take her place I'm left a little brokenhearted. There is no denying that Olga is a ravishingly beautiful actress, but Camille is such an underdeveloped beauty that she practically becomes nothing but eye candy. I'm glad they gave her a character arc, but it really isn't much of an original one (very `been-there-done-that'). She has a coldness that I liked, but she could have done so much more had they really tried to flesh her out.
Dench is perfect, as usual (love the inspired casting of this role), Jeffrey Wright is good, Gemma Arterton is gorgeous and Mathieu Amalric is sorely miscast.
I know that this sounds rather harsh, and the film itself it not bad (I own it and will watch it again), but I just want to express my disappointment. Maybe my expectations were too high, but I don't think so. When you come out of the gate with a blistering and inspired take on a film franchise you have an obligation to back it up. Look at what Nolan did with his sequel to `Batman Begins', or even what Raimi did with his sequel to `Spider Man'. They took what they did in their first film and flipped it on its head, delivering to us an even better film the second go around. They built on their original film. Maybe the change in directors had a hand in this films fate, but there is no way that one can say that Marc Forster does any justice to Martin Campbell's `Casino Royale'.
So, if I were to grade this film separated from `Casino Royale', grading it as if I never saw Campbell's film, then I'd give it a B. It is entertaining, action packed and exciting, and the brisk running time makes it so that you never get bored and never have time to really notice that the film is lacking in any real emotional connection. It is also no where near the campy stupidity of some in this franchise and so the plot never makes one want to throw a shoe at the screen. But, sadly (well, sadly for this film) I have seen `Casino Royale' and so I cannot grade this film separated from its predecessor. Having said that, I give the film a C+. It should have been much better.
Thankfully it's not `that' bad....more info
- I Understand The Effort...But Don't Like It
For 40+ years, from Dr. No to Die Another Day and Sean Connery to Pierce Brosnan, the James Bond formula remained basically the same: The gun-barrel opening, a lot of action, Bond says a few catchphrases ("Bond, James Bond" and "Shaken, Not Stirred"), Bond gets the girl, and the film ends with the James Bond theme pounding in the background.
A few years ago, however, a new Bond (Daniel Craig) brought a new formula (prequel) to the Bond franchise with Casino Royale, a gripping film that satisfies action fans as well as provides all the traditional Bond landmarks (albeit some in their inaugural forms) as described above. As Casino Royale ended, audiences were left feeling as if the "Craig Bond" was well on his way to becoming the Bond we know and love.
The trouble is, the ending of Quantum of Solace does the EXACT same thing...with little to no character development to back it up. For a basic plot summary, Bond spends the entire film trying to gain a measure of revenge for the death of Vespa, his girlfriend, in Casino Royale. A lot of fast cars, unbelievable chase scenes, and M-defying later, and supposedly Bond has reconciled his past and now able to move forward.
Unfortunately, nothing particularly engaging happened during that time to make me believe as if Bond really is a changed man. I think the problem is that Craig is never really allowed to wildly emote in a vengeful fashion...he harbors the same stoic expression the entire film. I would have loved to have seen a Matthew Fox-esque emotive rant that LOST fans have come to appreciate, but it just never happened. The strange thing is that it wasn't just overshadowed by the crazy action scenes...those were pretty much balanced for a Bond film. Just no emotion whatsoever.
Thus, while I appreciate this film's goal of trying to allow Bond to move on from his greatest tragedy, it just doesn't work. I would actually rather see a Bond film such as "Tomorrow Never Dies" or "The World Is Not Enough", installments that were heavy on the schtick and light on the plot, than this heavy film that didn't really get me excited until the Bond theme blared before the end credits.
Die-hard Bond fans will watch this film regardless of what I say, but this is a movie that you can skip and really not miss any of the early-Bond character development that was so compelling in Craig's first Bond effort....more info
- Mediocre Quantum
DVD quality shakey at best as there were several scenes that would not play. Excellent James Bond movie disrupted by scene skips. ...more info
- This movie is terrible
AV quality is great, but the content is terrible. Don't waste your money. Don't buy it, rent it....more info
- Tried to like it
I wanted very much to like this movie, but could not. I watched it three times trying to find some reason to rate it more highly. It is only Daniel Craig's excellence in portraying Bond that earns the movie a second star. The plot is non-existent, the characters unengaging, and the action is impossible to follow as the scenes shift all over the globe. Killing off Mathis and chucking his body into a dumpster was an incredibly pointless bit. As others have suggested, the film was more like a compilation of action sequences from the cutting room floor of Casino Royale, which, in my mind, may be the best Bond of all time. And I saw Dr. No in its theatrical release, so I have observed a lot of different treatments of Fleming's character within their generational context. I hope Craig is given better material to work with in the next one. This one crashed aand burned. ...more info
- One Word.... Action
Action packed... Daniel Craig is filling the enourmously big shoes that comes with taking on the role of James Bond....more info
- Why go back to the old formula?
James Bond, unfortunately, becomes an invincible spy again.
He beats up bunch of agents in an elevator with his hands tied behind his back. He can outrun, outdrive, and outpunch anyone. Oh, and he hardly ever takes a punch from anyone. His pistol never misses or runs out of ammunition while the machine gun fire of his enemies always miss. Did I mention Bond can probably bench 800 pounds in this film? (he lifts one man up with ONE arm).
Yet, this film is still better than most Bond films. Daniel Craig is still a great actor and his portrayal of Bond is unmistakably the best.
The hotel in the last sequence, which seems to be made of a cardboard, has multitude of methane tanks conveniently located where Bond can blow them. Furthermore, the hotel apparently had zero fire suppression since the entire hotel catches fire in mere 5 seconds. But the hotel must be made of smoke free materials since there is ZERO smoke in midst of all the fire. How convenient for the movie crew!
This movie is nowhere near as good as Casino Royale. Why go back to the old "invincible Bond" formula that has been done and redone so many times?...more info
- Decent follow-up to Casino Royale
It was a decent Bond flick, but it seemed like a repeat of a lot of plot elements from Casino Royale....more info
I really enjoyed this film a lot. To me, it kind of had a similar feel to that of The Living Daylights. A lot of people told me not to go see it, that it was not as good as Casino Royale. They told me not to waste my money on it, and just rent it. Now that I saw it, I have to beg to differ completely. I thought it was better than Royale. I almost now having seen it, I want to buy it! I like the action more, and the nuances are to the point and necessary. Its interesting how Daniel Craig plays a Bond who not just anihilates his enemies but punishes them according to the damage they inflict on others. For example, the oil can in the desert to Greene, flashes back to Fields on the bed covered in oil. You cannot go wrong with this movie; its an excellent boost to the franchise....more info
- Much better than expected
This is one of the best Bond movies I've ever seen. Maybe I just clicked with it, but maybe it is the cinematographic skill. I usually don't care much for action scenes as they are terrible predictable, however this film put me on the edge of the seat: it was real and unpredicable while still being slick and glamorous. Daniel Craig did a fantastic job, his character was easy to emphasize with but he retained the tough Bond factor and resolution. Visuually it was rather terrific too, as well subtle Bond humour was well placed. I can't wait to see the next installment....more info
- Good action Flick
Quantum of Silence is a good flick well suited for the new James bond. Lots of action right from the git-go but without the now familiar cliches. No Bond, James Bond introductions. This is a James Bond make over and I don't thnink it hurt the series one bit. It was, in fact, about time. The drink is still there, shaken but not stirred. It is just not as obvious. Treats the audience more like the grown-ups they have most likely become. Daniel Craig makes a great Bond. The women will still love him....more info
- Amazon Review
Although I have purchased DVD's that don't play well on my video equipment, this DVD was in excellent condition, and I didn't have to wait too long for its arrival!...more info
- very satisfied.
My movie was delivered promptly and was in excellant condition. I would order from this person again. Five stars....more info
- A quantum of casino royal would have saved it
This is not a good Bond film. It is nothing remotely like Casino Royal and feels cheap. Craig is a great Bond and his rebel like status with M as his mother figure is excellent drama but there is simply a lack of any interesting pantomime bad guys or theatrical suspension of disbelief that was always the hallmark of a Bond movie. Instead the writers have decided to incorporate too much real world type scenarios to sterilize the franchise to compete with Jason Bourne. The air of high adventure and over the top missions is replaced by common as mud mobsters and spies that are cannon fodder for Bond to act emotionally tough around when they die. Not only is the story weak but the action is not well cut together. In the end this is a problem with story and direction. It is not a good Bond and can be relegated to some of the worse the series has to offer. It's a pity because Craig is a talent who is wasted and saves this film from one star. Craig is Bond but this film wasn't....more info
- Not quite 'Casino Royale' but still very good!
Not quite up to the level of 'Casino Royale', but Daniel Craig continues to impress as 007. Bond Girl Olga Kurylenko is pretty disappointing (of course she's attractive, but she's not nearly the actress that Eva Green or Halle Berry are, and they are the new standard). Still, plenty of good action, and as I already mentioned, Craig continues to impress....more info
- A fast paced thriller
I enjoyed this 007. You can see that they political landscape is shifting and the enemy is the Quantum instead of Smersh. The Tri-Lateral Commission duping the world and the stupid governments allowing it but for this one man. A bit far fetched but that is 007....more info
- This is about trust. You said you weren't motivated by revenge.
Chilly eyed, bullet-shaped Daniel Craig is the right man for the James Bond franchise, and his second outing confirms it. At their wussiest, Roger Moore and Pierce Brosnan seemed determined to fulfill creator Ian Fleming's fleeting, facetious description of 007 from the novel "Casino Royale," as "an expensive gigolo." Craig is nobody's trick, although one of the many virtues (at least for straight women and gay men) of the hugely entertaining 2006 film version of "Casino Royale" was the shot of Craig rising out of the ocean looking like the best kind of trouble. Suddenly Craig was the new Ursula Andress, at least for a few seconds. Yet "Casino Royale" brought Bond back to basics, providing a satisfying origin myth, keeping the action human-scaled and the gadgetry to a minimum while retooling Britain's killer diller for a nervous new century of spy-versus-spying.
Compared with "Casino Royale," "Quantum of Solace" is a disappointment. Craig anchors it, and Judi Dench's M enjoys some fine, stern scenes, but director Marc Forster ("Finding Neverland," "Monster's Ball," "The Kite Runner") isn't much of an action man. There's plenty, but half the time it's visually incoherent. A minute past the (drab) opening credits, a superhumanly implacable Craig is careening through a snaky Italian tunnel, pursued by enemy agents with vehicular or machine-gun homicide on their minds. Simple premise. Oldie but goodie. Yet the way it's shot and cut, it plays like a parody of a car commercial shot in the style of a Bond film.
The dominant theme is revenge. The tale picks up minutes after the end of "Casino Royale." Bond is after the shadowy Quantum organization for killing his lady friend. Olga Kurylenko, the surly Ukrainian-born model and fledgling actress, plays the mistress of the primary adversary, a ruthless entrepreneur (Mathieu Almaric) buying up desert land in Bolivia for reasons unknown. We're a long way from the global domination days, in other words, when a Bond film wasn't a Bond film without a ray gun.
About that title "Quantum of Solace." In the Fleming short story, unrelated to the movie's screenplay, the phrase refers to a measure of comfort needed to get by in life. The only title less Bondian than "Quantum of Solace" would, in fact, be "Measure of Comfort." The film keeps Craig's 007 suffering and brooding and seething right up until the end, with only a brief dalliance with a fellow agent (Gemma Arterton ) as the story whips from Italy to London to Bolivia-played-by-Chile, with side trips to Haiti (played by Panama) and a detour to Austria for a nifty surveillance sequence. During a performance of Puccini's "Tosca" Bond tracks the whereabouts and the what-they're-sayin's of various Quantum operatives in attendance.
That segment works. What I miss, though, are scenes such as that incredible construction-site pursuit in "Casino Royale." Its equivalent here comes early, in a rooftop scramble (equally derived from the "Bourne" series) followed by an interior scaffolding scene undone by an editing rhythm only rabid fans of "Moulin Rouge" could love. The miracle of the second and third "Bourne" pictures had as much to do with director Paul Greengrass' mastery of violent action in close quarters as with the propulsion of the editing. In "Quantum of Solace," there's a boat chase that left me baffled as to who was going how fast in which direction chasing whom, and why.
In one of the "Quantum of Solace" posters, Craig wields an absurdly large gun, as if to reassure the global audience: "This film may have a wimpy title, but never fear." The weapon itself, unless I missed it, makes no appearance in the film. Fine with me. I didn't miss it. What I missed was the class, pacing and authority of "Casino Royale." Not every director is well-suited to Bondland. "There's something horribly efficient about you," Kurylenko says to Craig at one point. The same goes for the film
- Overly Complicated For A Bond Film
Daniel Craig IS the new James Bond. He cemented that position with his opening volley in the 2006 release of Casino Royale. A bit more hard edged. A bit more gloomy. But just as dangerous, Craig gives us a Bond we're probably going to enjoy for several years to come. We get the same tough guy here in QUANTUM OF SOLACE but with a story that has problems.
The good is that it picks up right where we left off with Casino Royale. We learn that a secret organization threatens the very government that Bond works for. Even to the point of shots being fired at M (Judi Dench, Cranford) by one of her own double-00s.
Bond, still pining and hating his old love Vesper, finds himself enjoying his work too much. Killing is becoming a habit ...and M and her superiors don't like it. But when Bond begins to dig up dirt on political higher ups, M pays quiet attention. It all starts in a third world country and Bond's fascination with a beautiful girl (no surprise there) named Camille (Olga Kurylenko). She's after the man who killed her family. Bond's after whoever it was who shot at M. Their two paths intersect in an unusual way: Bond feeling sympathy for her and wanting to help her get revenge. Her feeling a unique pull towards Bond's unflagging search for truth, regardless of the cost. All of this is taken up by an evil man named Mr. Greene (Mathieu Amalric, Munich) who's trying to control the world's most valuable resource (I won't give that away) while giving super-politicos whatever they want. But Bond is on to him, and with his help, Bond aids Camille in getting her revenge, while also getting Bond closer to Mr. Greene.
The biggest issue with the film, however, is the multiple threads that intertwine with Bond's actions. They are confusing in the extreme, making the watcher wonder what, exactly, is going on at various times. For instance, during a scene when Bond has to kill a man who happens to work for the British government, we never learn why this man got involved in the first place nor even who he was working for (clandestinely speaking). There's also a hotel that runs on fuel cells that goes boom! yet we don't know why this hotel is out in the middle of nowhere nor what fuel cells have to do with the storyline (yes, I know that fuel cells run on hydrogen, which can be gotten from water, but it still doesn't explain why it was out in a desert and not, say, along a river valley or near the ocean). There are other threads that also lead nowhere, but I'll leave you to discover what they were should you choose to watch this.
But make no mistake, it IS an action-packed, 007 flick in the vein of what we've come to expect from Bond films. But it's a bit overly complicated. Something to be aware of....more info
- Good Movie, Not as Good as "Casino Royale"
I'm really enjoying the "reboot" of the Bond series that Daniel Craig has brought on, but "Casino Royale" is a tough act to follow. I did enjoy "Quantum of Solace," but some of it fell just a little flat for me. I didn't care as much about the Camille character as I did about Vesper from "Casino Royale." It felt like there was a certain amount of depth left out... Like, with "Casino Royale" you could say "That was great!" but with "Quantum of Solace" you inevitably added the obligatory suffix - "That was great... for a Bond movie."
Which is, again, not to say I didn't like it - I did. I just had super high hopes after "Casino Royale" that didn't quite get lived up to....more info
- Good. Really, really good.
When I first saw this in the theater, I wasn't that impressed. I think that Casino Royale was one of the best Bond movies in a long, long time. It was a true Bond to the books, not the Hollywood Hype.
However, when I re-watched it at home, I liked it a lot. It is not as true to the books as Casino Royale, but pretty close. There is a lot of action, but it is not a straight action movie like the Brosnan stuff was.
It has a little of the Bond charm, intrigue and flow.
It was nice to see.
- It just doesn`t work very well
The new version of James Bond just doesn`t work very well. And this one didn`t even have much of a plot.
The older Bond films didn`t try to be too serious. A larger than life hero with plenty of action and liberally laced with humour were just fun to watch.
The last 2 Bond films have lost that. They try to be taken seriously and the new Bond is not exactly a likable character. You find yourself not really caring if the bad guys manage to kill him off or not.
The last 2 Bond films are just not fun.
- Typical Bond
This Bond movie contained the special effects and car chases we have become used to. I cannot say that the BluRay version was any more spectacular than the normal DVD. Daniel Craig plays the part well with a bit of ambiguity as to wether he is more man than machine. All in all, it was fun to watch....more info
- Torrid action at the start, a little slow at the end
No spoiler information here - just to say I thought the first Daniel Craig Bond was spectacular and this is a worthy follow up. The movie starts with a bang and the action is pretty much one fantastic stunt after the other, real heart-pounding stuff. But it seems as if the screen play ran out of steam at the end, kind of a wet noodle finish. But the move overall gets a B+....more info
- Poor Choice
This movie is loud, rambling and uninteresting. I was unable to view it for more than 20 minutes. Not my cup of tea. Totally different from
Casino Royale....more info
- NOT THE TYPICAL "JAMES BOND STYLE" AS WE KNEW!!!
Worth seeing, but if you loved the lavish, over-the-top, 2006 production of "Casino Royale" you may be disappointed. The story begins immediately after "Casino Royale" ends and skips some of the Bond basics: the lounging elegance and wit, Miss Moneypenny, the fun high-tech gadgets, the opening gunshot, and the line "my name is Bond, James Bond." The result is a relentless series of chases, much like the last Jason Bourne movie (everyone says this, and it's true). On the positive side, Judi Dench has a larger role as M and she keeps turning up to banter with Mr Bond. Other goodies include a lean, mean, Daniel Craig, a lean, mean script (much shorter than "Casino Royal") and a cat-and-mouse chase around a floating opera stage in the middle of a live performance of Puccini's "Tosca." But the glamour, pleasure, and sense of mischief that pepper other Bond films are pretty scarce in this one. Gone, too, are the scenes from "Casino Royale" in which Craig could explore psychological drama at some length (the poker game, the torture scene, consoling Vesper in the shower). Keep your expectations in check and you should enjoy the ride. This film is mostly about revenge; not much solace here, but then perhaps that's the point.
- WORST JAMES BOND EVER!!!
Saw this flick at the theatre when it first came out because I had highly anticipated it. I have never been a fan of the shaky, fast motion camera work (ie Bourne Identity) and this movie is full of it. The story was boring and I quickly started losing interest. It was a terrible letdown as I thought Casino Royale was fantastic. I literally fell asleep in the theatre during this one (I am not joking) it was so boring.
A huge letdown to say the least...
Someone please get a new writer and director (bring back Casino Royale's director!!)...more info
- Quantum of Solace=CRAP
As an 11 year old boy who has seen every Bond film, I must say "Bond, you are awesome." After seeing QoS, I must say, "Bond, you suck." This movie has no humor whatsoever. With no plot and ugly Bond girls, no wonder this is the WORST AND MOST BORING MOVIE I HAVE EVER SEEN IN MY LIFE! I litteraly cried when I saw that the "Gun Barrel Scene" was at the beggining. It was at the end. Why did they make this movie? Were they mental? I don't know Bond anymore. Thanks to the people who made this movie, the once great Bond francise now sucks. P.S.- What was QoS even about, anyway? ...more info
- Who IS James Bond?
What a moral morass is "Quantum of Solace." But what movie-making! Daniel Craig is a James Bond hitherto unknown, with Director Marc Forster taking him to places never before explored.
Quantum: the smallest amount of a physical quantity that can exist independently. If Bond (with Craig wearing his clothes and his mentality) receives just a quantum of solace (that smallest amount) by movie's end, then how much revenge filled his brain, his heart, his very essence? This is a Bond unstoppable, unimaginable, brutal--the epitome of a cold-hearted killer who seemingly just stepped out of an opera house peopled with evening clothes or the streets ferociously gang-dominated, tux on, weapon in hand, seeking that quantum of solace. Beware!
This is a Bond that even "M" cannot control. She tries. Lord help her, she tries. Bond's job is on the line, her job is on the line. Never before has "M" been anything than totally self-assured, but this is an "M" who finds herself behind the matresses, a woman reduced to just a woman who removes her makeup at night like any other woman who works a 9-5 job. Only "M" is supposed to be a force of power, control, behind-the-scenes domination. Who took her whip? Bond, of course. His mission is not impossible nor is his identity a mystery. All he seeks is a quantum of solace.
So a British man of mystery to the unknowing eye is really a secret agent with a license to kill. And kill Bond does--without hesitation, without remorse, without doubt. He spares only two moments to matters other than his revenge-driven quest: he gingerly embraces his old friend Mathis, and he has the obligatory sex scene. The embrace is necessary, even the scant sex scene is incongruous in context and should have lay on the cutting room floor, and initially erased right out of this script.
What the reviewer on the product page calls the "Bond girl" is an insult to the character of Camille (Olga Kurylenko). This is not the same-ol', same-ol' sexy girl who makes Bond's acquaintance in bed. This is an equal, also seeking a quantum of solace. Let the viewer take note: Everything is new about this Bond film.
Even the villain is less than a pure force as in the past. Superficially benevolent, he is buying up dry lands (with water on them) to make a killing (take that literally and metaphorically). Only in the occasional moment does this villain show his hidden evil. Why the lessening of caricature so notable in previous Bond films? To contrast Bond's unrelenting force of revenge? To show that all characters are capable of their opposite? Or perhaps to show the moral morass that our universe has become?
The outcome of Bond's quest is, of course, expected. He seizes his quantum of solace, but he is forever changed. Daniel Craig takes the viewer with him and shows what he (as actor and agent) is really capable of. What will the next film show about Bond's character, about Craig's incomparably nuanced acting?...more info
- A Colossal Miscalculation
The movie is miscalculated and suffers from a weak screenplay and a dull plot which relies much too heavily on its predecessor. The movie tries to faithfully continue where "Casino Royale" left off, which is the films biggest mistake. The result is a movie which seems unoriginal and weighed down considerably by its own plot. The movie never gets to become its own film. It is anchored too deeply to the past. The story suffers immensely because it gets too confusing to remember all the little plot points from its predecessor. More importantly -- we don't bother to. The film never gets any lift. It never engages us. The action sequences seem artificial and out of place. The villain is lackluster and his "evil scheme" is pretty pathetic. The climax was ridiculously poor. This is just not an entertaining film. It should have been a standalone movie - plain and simple. The action sequences were almost laughable at times. The Dark Knight has spoiled me and makes films like this look like the final project of a high-school film class. Skip it and wait for the next one which has some promise as it will be a standalone movie.