Starring: Daniel Craig, Olga Kurylenko, Mathieu Almaric
Directed by: Marc Forster (“The Kite Runner”)
Written by: Paul Haggis, Neal Purvis, and Robert Wade (“Casino Royale”)
While Daniel Craig’s more intense James Bond character was an improvement when it replaced Pierce Brosnan’s pretty-boy image for the first time in 2006’s “Casino Royale,” there’s not much any 007 can do when a screenplay is as interesting as a watered-down martini. Craig is still the man who should be trekking the globe and seducing the ladies, but the franchise has hit a sizable speed bump in “Quantum of Solace.”
With a story that centers on Bolivian oil pipelines and water, the trio of screenwriters who penned “Royale” – Paul Haggis, Neal Purvis, and Robert Wade – seem less creative for their follow-up film. In “Solace,” Bond is on a new mission to find information on a secret organization not even British intelligence knows about. With femme fatale/Bond girl in hand (Olga Kurylenko), Bond may or may not be seeking revenge for the death of Vesper in the last film, but who’s really keeping a body count at this point?
Craig is all muscle while other Bonds have been all charm, which is a great revision, but in “Solace,” it feels like the writers have checked off a grocery list to make sure they’ve gotten all the secret-agent clichés in order. Foot chase? Check. Car chase? Check. Boat chase? Check. Plane chase? You’re kidding, right? Check. Unless you really had your heart set on an action sequence on horseback, even the most devoted Bond fans should know when something has run its course.