It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
OK, I'll say it. Never again. Don't ever let this happen again to James Bond. "Quantum of Solace" is his 22nd film and he will survive it, but for the 23rd it is necessary to go back to the drawing board and redesign from the ground up. Please understand: James Bond is not an action hero! He is too good for that. He is an attitude. Violence for him is an annoyance. He exists for the foreplay and the cigarette. He rarely encounters a truly evil villain. More often a comic opera buffoon with hired goons in matching jump suits.
"Quantum of Solace" has the worst title in the series save for "Never Say Never Again," words that could have been used by Kent after King Lear utters the saddest line in all of Shakespeare: "Never! Never! Never! Never! Never!" The movie opens with Bond involved in a reckless car chase on the tollway that leads through mountain tunnels from Nice through Monte Carlo and down to Portofino in Italy, where Edward Lear lies at rest with his cat, Old Foss. I have driven that way many a time. It is a breathtaking drive.
You won't find that out here. The chase, with Bond under constant machinegun fire, is so quickly cut and so obviously composed of incomprehensible CGI that we're essentially looking at bright colors bouncing off each other, intercut with Bond at the wheel and POV shots of approaching monster trucks. Let's all think together. When has an action hero ever, even once, been killed by machinegun fire, no matter how many hundreds of rounds? The hit men should simply reject them and say, "No can do, Boss. They never work in this kind of movie."
The chase has no connection to the rest of plot, which is routine for Bond, but it's about the movie's last bow to tradition. In "Quantum of Solace" he will share no cozy quality time with the Bond girl (Olga Kurylenko). We fondly remember the immortal names of Pussy Galore, Xenia Onatopp and Plenty O'Toole, who I have always suspected was a drag queen. In this film, who do we get? Are you ready for this? Camille. That's it. Camille. Not even Camille Squeal. Or Cammy Miami. Or Miss O'Toole's friend Cam Shaft.