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Before | After

Thanks for the birthday wishes yesterday, everyone who made them. I really appreciate it. It was as good a day as it could be considering all the things going on that remind me of my dad and my sister. It felt really weird this year to not have my dad to go to on Thanksgiving, and then have our usual conversation where he asks me what I want for my birthday and then tells me to get it for myself from him. ;-)

I went to see Skyfall with my friend Michael, and then did a little shopping, then went to dinner at Bai Tong, considered the best Thai restaurant in Seattle, conveniently located near the theatre we saw Skyfall at. Then I came home and hung out with Blues, Olive, and Buffy. The big disappointment of the day was that there was no mangoes and sticky rice at the restaurant for dessert. Yeah, yeah, I know.

I had a really intense dream about sis_r the night before and it left me feeling a little weird during the day. And I'm trying to get the house really tidied up for the party and so I keep coming across all this stuff that I haven't wanted to deal with, stuff like Dad's checkbooks, some hospital bills, etc. It definitely has an impact on your feelings. Plus the past couple days have had a lot of people canceling on the party for Friday, which worries me since I bought this big freakin' cake and now most people seem to be bailing on it. Arg.

Anyway, lest I focus on the maudlin, my thoughts about Skyfall

I absolutely loved it. I mean, yeah, I could always do with fewer chase sequences and fight scenes and such, but this is Bond, and so it's part of the series' DNA. At least with Craig's Bond, because I've always loved him so much, I'm happy to just ignore those scenes and look at his face or his bod or whatever. And his Bond is a fashion freak's dream come true, the Tom Ford tailoring just...gurgle. I drool over his clothes, and him in them.

I saw a lot of people writing about how unhappy they were that Silva was a swishy gay bad guy, but honestly, I didn't see that at all. I agree very much with what Craig himself said: that it's not about homosexuality, it's about sex -- Silva uses sex, and the threat of it, as a way to knock people off their game, to fuck with their heads, and as soon as Bond rejoinders with his "What makes you think this is my first time?" Silva backs off. He knows he can't play that game and upset James, so he goes in a (terrible) different direction. I was WAY more upset at how he treated that poor, poor woman and the brutal, sick way he killed her than about whether he was gay and preying on Bond. And both Craig and Bardem have both played their fair share of gay men on film, and honestly I trust their instincts. I don't always understand Bardem's instincts for making his bad guys so effing weird (I recently watched Goya's Ghosts, which left me so disturbed by his portrayal of an Inquisitional priest that I can't quite shake being unsettled by him now in everything and just plain creeped out), but I trust that he's not going to be doing the predatory gay bad guy. And Bond's response was just so perfect.

The other thing I know a lot of people had issues with was Bond coming into the shower with her. But again, it just seemed very James Bond Movie, and she did in fact give him an invitation of sorts, so it really didn't bug me as much as it bugs others. I can TOTALLY understand why people are bothered by both these things, I'm not dismissing their concerns, but I just didn't see either one as being that bad. Maybe I'm crazy.

I'm not gonna lie, I was really upset and sad that M died. In my opinion, until Craig came along, Judi Dench as M was the ONLY good thing about the 007 franchise that ever happened. I've written before many times about my intense dislike of the series, but even when she was in the Brosnan ones, she was a shining light for me. And the British secret services have this interesting history of women in their ranks, so I always loved that she was heading up the agency. Her relationship with Craig's Bond, though, just changed everything for me -- it was the first time I felt even the slightest bit fannish about it. In my head canon, he's her boy toy, but even if he's not, it's clear he's special to her, and I just adore their relationship. As much as I loved the first two Craig Bond movies, if I just had short versions of them that were just their scenes together, I'd be happy.

Of course, his plan at the end was the very picture of moronic plans, and I kind of grind my teeth at that sort of thing, and of everyone missing that they're being led on by Silva, but the stuff at the end with him and her was worth it. I love their prickly tension and clear understanding of each other. When he picked her up in the car, I was muffling a screechy squee.

I'm concerned what they're going to do with Eve. They don't have a good history at all with women, and so I can see them relegating her to the desk job, after all that dialog, which is a shame because I was really smitten with her portrayal and her character. Damn, I want more of her, especially if we can't have Dench as M.

I was also deeply amused at how quickly Q/007 took off. I can see it, but I don't feel it. I guess because I'm so entrenched in the M/007 love. I have a ton of thoughts about the movie, but I feel like I want to see it again just to try to organize it all. The callbacks and shoutouts to the old Bond stuff didn't really mean much to me, even if it did make me chuckle once in a while, but I loved Adele's song, which felt very much like an old-skool Bond song. I heard part of it on the radio a few weeks ago, but couldn't seem to catch it again till the movie; it was a pleasure to hear.

Really, I mean, I had bits and bobs here and there that either exasperated me or made me roll my eyes, but none of that, and even M's death, could make me not just love the movie. It'll never be Casino Royale for me, they'll have to work very, very hard to achieve that, but it's still better than I could have hoped for.

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Nov. 30th, 2012 11:44 am (UTC)
Happy belated birthday!!

Edited at 2012-11-30 11:45 am (UTC)
Nov. 30th, 2012 01:22 pm (UTC)
Blergh, I'm terrible at remembering birthdays. So glad yours was a good one.

Really loved Skyfall too, and especially that moment with Silva. It was a power-play and Bond treated it exactly right. Didn't love Severine or what the film did with her, but it's a Bond film. Some tropes are expected.
Nov. 30th, 2012 04:06 pm (UTC)
Happy belated birthday!
Nov. 30th, 2012 05:24 pm (UTC)
Happy belated bday!
Dec. 1st, 2012 06:41 am (UTC)
Happy belated birthday!
Dec. 1st, 2012 06:43 am (UTC)
I agree with many of your thoughts about Skyfall. I thought it was pretty heavy-handed with some of the themes, old vs new/young, etc, etc, but most Bond films don't even bother making an argument at all, so I was willing to indulge them.

Apropos of nothing, an LJ friend of mine just posted about how he's currently watching Charlie Jade, which I guess is on Netflix streaming nowadays.
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Out of the past

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