Quantum of Solace falls short of expectations

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Quantum of Solace (2008)
Rating: 4 of 5 stars.
Directed by Marc Foster.
Written by Paul Haggis, Neal Purvis, Robert Wade.
Starring: Daniel Craig, Olga Kurylenko, Mathieu Amalric, Jude Dench.

“When you can’t tell your friends from your enemies it’s time to go.” Fortunately for film-goers, Bond disregards M’s advice, and we’re given several solid sequels. Though Quantum of Solace fails to live up to both its predecessor and its sequel, it’s still an enjoyable entry into the world’s best spy franchise.

Quantum opens in the immediate wake of Casino Royale, and a thrilling car chase through Italy, as MI6 investigates the shadowy organization behind the events that transpired in the conclusion of the first film. This film’s love for chase scenes transcends the roads and extends to the water and the air as well.

If his betrayal in the first film wasn’t enough to cause Bond all-due distrust, Quantum immediately makes it clear that he can’t even turn to his own organization for help as its ranks have been compromised. Despite his usual lone-wolf status, he does still have a few friends to call on.

Another money-motivated villain is fine, but unfortunately Dominic Greene was not intimidating, entertaining, nor memorable as the head of reforestation charity that secretly leverages third world dictators.

An immediate difference between Martin Campbell and Marc Forster is their shooting style. While Campbell utilized wide angles and let the action sequences speak for themselves, Forster often uses close quarters, rapidly moving cameras, and choppy cuts that often make it difficult to track what’s actually happening.

The film is substantially shorter than its predecessor. Despite being more than half an hour shorter than Casino, it still manages to run out of steam and feels rather devoid intrigue, despite overwhelming action.