Film Score Monthly
FSM HOME MESSAGE BOARD FSM CDs FSM ONLINE RESOURCES FUN STUFF ABOUT US  SEARCH FSM   
Search Terms: 
Search Within:   search tips 
You must log in or register to post.
  Go to page:    
This is a comments thread about Blog Post: Thoughts on devotion, new Bond and new Trek by Stephen Woolston
 
 Posted:   Jul 13, 2013 - 8:26 AM   
 By:   Yavar Moradi   (Member)

What a great, reasonable, point of view you have!

Yavar

P.S. I enjoyed the last Trek film quite a lot (in large part because of Karl Urban as McCoy who was unexpectedly perfect) and had high hopes for the current one, but was one of the "old Trek fans" who was really pissed off how they did things.

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 13, 2013 - 11:32 AM   
 By:   Nexus6BT   (Member)

Good insights; it's true that the longer a franchise goes, the more opinions there are about what the best and most "true" era was.

As a long-time Bond and Trek fan, I really enjoyed Skyfall (though I thought the third act went on way too long) but very much disliked Star Trek Into Darkness. Ironically, one of the problems I had with Into Darkness was that it actually made too many references to the older films and series (specifically Wrath of Khan) to the point where it was distracting. After the 2009 film, I was excited about the prospect of new stories and ideas, so I was disappointed that they chose to rehash a concept that had already been done so well, and then compound the problem by continually reminding us of how good the other movie was.

And it's true, as you said, that the filmmakers (and fans) end up getting trapped by their devotion to the "gold standard" of the franchise, such as Goldfinger or Wrath of Khan. Both of those are great films, but I'm actually a little tired of the blind reverence everyone has for them. They both have their flaws, and they are not the only times their respective franchises have been good.

And even the "eras" we revere have their ups and downs. I'm a Sean Connery fan myself, but Diamonds Are Forever is probably the worst Bond film ever made (at least in the official series); it's certainly worse than anything Roger Moore ever did. And as much as I like TOS Trek, there were some pretty laughable episodes here and there ("Spock's Brain" comes to mind).

Sometimes I think Patton Oswalt was on to something in his Wired article a couple of years ago. Geek culture may need a palate-cleansing of sorts before too long.

 
 Posted:   Jul 13, 2013 - 11:51 AM   
 By:   Advise & Consent   (Member)

Diamonds Are Forever is probably the worst Bond film ever made (at least in the official series); it's certainly worse than anything Roger Moore ever did.

Sir, I demand a duel. big grin

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 13, 2013 - 12:27 PM   
 By:   Nexus6BT   (Member)

Ha; you're on!

Seriously though, Moore's films got pretty silly, but I dunno; something about Diamonds always rubbed me the wrong way.

 
 Posted:   Jul 13, 2013 - 12:28 PM   
 By:   filmsonwax   (Member)

It's certainly a well-thought out post, and I both agree and disagree, mainly on Into Darkness, which I felt was not only a poorly constructed film barely held together by its cast and its music irrespective of any Star Trek nerd complaints, but also didn't do itself any favours by being a hamfisted recreation of what everyone considers to be the Goldfinger of Trek. Khan has been both a gift and a bane to Star Trek over the years, and it'd be nice to just let it go.

 
 Posted:   Jul 13, 2013 - 12:42 PM   
 By:   Advise & Consent   (Member)

Ha; you're on!

Seriously though, Moore's films got pretty silly, but I dunno; something about Diamonds always rubbed me the wrong way.


I hear ya. These films, starring Connery, Moore or others would ALL have seemed fine when I was a teen, and the same goes for the new ones. But at nearly fifty, the Bond films just seem like so much fluff, albeit HIGHLY entertaining fluff. The same goes for Star Trek, which I still dearly love, but which are just inconsequntial movies nonethless. Let's appreciate them for what they are.

How long do you reckon it will take before I am now challenged to a duel? big grin

 
 Posted:   Jul 13, 2013 - 12:56 PM   
 By:   Stephen Woolston   (Member)

Oh, like you, I could write a list of criticisms as long as your arm on both INTO DARKNESS and SKYFALL. But then again I could probably do the same for GOLDFINGER and THE WRATH OF KHAN if I felt inclined to do so.

As for DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER, I disagree that its worse than the Moore films, but I do agree it was a harbinger of rot.

Today, it's 46 years since YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE opened in New York. Whilst I enjoy that film a lot, it's emphasis on moving the story on fast (at the expense of a well-written causal logic) from one gadget-laden set piece to another was a blueprint for rot in the series. It was fresh at the time and it was a big success. However, DIAMONDS was a polarity response to OHMSS, swerving wildly to the YOLT template and therefore was, arguably, the first film in the rot phase.

Lewis Gilbert at least did that formula better and I'm quite fond of both THE SPY WHO LOVED ME and MOONRAKER, but it would take until FOR YOUR EYES ONLY for Bond to re-grasp some of its earlier greatness. It did not do so convincingly, however, and with the exception of that and the Dalton films, the Bond films continued to be about devising fun-emphasising gadget-laden set pieces connected by weak narrative.

Until Daniel Craig, that is, when everything started going down the Bourne route instead.

Thanks for commenting folks!

 
 Posted:   Jul 13, 2013 - 7:01 PM   
 By:   Mr. Jack   (Member)

Ha; you're on!

Seriously though, Moore's films got pretty silly, but I dunno; something about Diamonds always rubbed me the wrong way.


Connery looks bloated and bored as hell (and his toupee looks lousy), the production values are atrocious (probably due to 90% of the budget going into lining Connery's pockets), there's a notable lack of tension, Mr. Kidd and Mr. Wint are deeply embarrassing "gay" caricatures that are horribly dated today, Jill St. John's awful Bond Girl (I always cringe when she does her "Yeeeee...!" bit at the end) and this is truly the beginning of the "campy" Bond that would carry through the Moore era. Had Connery stuck to his retirement after You Only Live Twice, he'd have a perfect 007 record, so it's sad to see him in such a slapdash production. Only A View To A Kill and Die Another Day are worse Bond films. frown

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 14, 2013 - 9:39 AM   
 By:   follow me   (Member)

The question is: if you change (almost) everything to please a new audience and keep the series "fresh", why still call it a "Bond-film"? Why not start a new series...oh yes, I know, it´s the money. You need the name "Bond" to be able to cash up big time. So, in reality that´s almost all that´s left of the Bond-films and books: the name! Fleming, Maibaum, Barry, Young, Hunt, Binder, Saltzman, (Albert Romolo) Broccoli are all dead. So the producers should let Bond die, too, and invent a new character. Of course they won´t do this and so we will get new non-Bond-Bond-films for evermore.

 
 Posted:   Jul 14, 2013 - 10:12 PM   
 By:   Zoragoth   (Member)

I disagree, Stephen, on your contention that John Glen got 'trapped' before he exited the series. His LIVING DAYLIGHTS and LICENCE TO KILL, the last two of his streak, are among the best and most interesting and unusual of the series, especially in the case of the latter, which really veered from the established formula.

Have to agree that DIAMONDS is one of the worst, right up there with DIE ANOTHER DAY. I'll still watch DIAMONDS again though when its turn has been reached in my blu ray set, though!

VIEW TO A KILL actually wore better for me, having just watched the blu-ray recently. I've never disliked it though, as other have. Lewis Gilbert's films still seem to me to be among the weakest Moore Bonds. I actually prefer MOONRAKER to SPY, which has always been well loved but has always, in my view, seemed to lie there on the screen like a dead, bloated fish!

 
 Posted:   Jul 15, 2013 - 12:02 AM   
 By:   SchiffyM   (Member)

The question is: if you change (almost) everything to please a new audience and keep the series "fresh", why still call it a "Bond-film"?

I think your premise that they changed almost everything is patently untrue, hyperbole masquerading as criticism, and with all due respect it feels like a rather petulant overreaction to a tonal shift you dislike.

You have every right in the world to dislike this, mind you. I know exactly why you dislike it (you've made that very clear on various threads in the last several months), and your feelings are yours and valid. But "Skyfall" is not just pretending to be a James Bond film. It is in every quantifiable way a James Bond film, just not one that you liked.

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 15, 2013 - 10:42 AM   
 By:   follow me   (Member)

The question is: if you change (almost) everything to please a new audience and keep the series "fresh", why still call it a "Bond-film"?

I think your premise that they changed almost everything is patently untrue, hyperbole masquerading as criticism, and with all due respect it feels like a rather petulant overreaction to a tonal shift you dislike.

You have every right in the world to dislike this, mind you. I know exactly why you dislike it (you've made that very clear on various threads in the last several months), and your feelings are yours and valid. But "Skyfall" is not just pretending to be a James Bond film. It is in every quantifiable way a James Bond film, just not one that you liked.


For once I was not especially speaking of SKYFALL here. As many posters here have often reminded us, the Bond-films changed their face several times. Personally I only regard those films as "real Bond-films", that adhere to an original Fleming story at least to SOME degree (not so much because I think only Fleming is entitled to write a Bond-story but simply because all the others have not really been up to this task) and then only the first seven films. When Roger Moore entered the Bond-scene, only John Barry´s scores were able to maintain some Bond-feeling. Of the later films only THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS, GOLDENEYE (an exception) and CASINO ROYALE succeeded in bringing back the original atmosphere to some degree (i.m.h.o).

However I would be interested to know, why you think that SKYFALL "is in every quantifiable way a James Bond film"? Certainly Fleming did not write anything like this (apart from the idea that Bond´s physical assessment is poor and he is sent on a treatment at a health clinic to improve his health in THUNDERBALL).
I guess Fleming would have suffered a heart attack much earlier, had he heard you compare his stories to John Logan´s scripts. wink

The fact remains the same: if you change so many ingredients of the original, why call it a "Bond-movie"? It has now become "Agent X". Take a Rolls Royce design, insert a Ford-motor and cheaper components - is it still a "real" Rolls Royce car?

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 15, 2013 - 11:52 AM   
 By:   Octoberman   (Member)

And as much as I like TOS Trek, there were some pretty laughable episodes here and there ("Spock's Brain" comes to mind).


 
You must log in or register to post.
  Go to page:    
© 2014 Film Score Monthly. All Rights Reserved.