“This is the world’s most precious resource, we need to control as much of it as we can.”
– Dominic Greene
MI6 007 agent James Bond (Daniel Craig) is rushing to deliver his captured Mr White (Jesper Christensen) to M (Judi Dench), to uncover more about his operation, Quantum. Bond is also personally invested with the events, seeing as Mr White was involved with Vesper Lynd’s (Eva Green) betrayal and death, a woman that Bond fell in love with, though is angered by her betrayal. However, in questioning, it turns out White meant it when he said we have people everywhere, and M’s personal bodyguard, Craig Mitchell (Glenn Foster), turns out to be a double agent, taking a shot at M. Bond chases him down and kills him, making M angrier than before. With information they discover in Mitchell’s flat, Bond sets off to Haiti.
Tracking down a contact, Edmund Slate (Neil Jackson), he kills him too and meets with Camille Montes (Olga Kurylenko), whom Slate was sent to kill at the behest of environmentalist Dominic Greene (Mathieu Amalric). Bond watches her, and gets an insight into Greene’s operation – he is assisting General Medrano (Joaquín Cosío) in overthrowing his government so that he can return from exile and take power. All Greene wants in return is a piece of desert that has nothing in it. Bond gets involved with saving Camille from Medrano after Greene handed her over, and here he learns that Medrano is responsible for having killed her family, and that she is on a revenge mission. Bond is tailing Greene now, intent on discovering the whole plan, and why pipes are being used. The CIA, however, seems to be making deals with Greene, what with Gregg Bean (David Harbour) striking a deal to not interfere with anything involving the access to Bolivian oil they are led to believe is there. His partner, Felix Leiter (Jeffrey Wright), makes it known that he is unimpressed with the deal.
Bond makes it into Quantum’s meeting, and it ends with a very bloody conclusion, causing M to finally decide she is finished with his rash decision making. A Special Branch bodyguard and advisor to the British Prime Minister is killed by Greene’s men, though it appears Bond is responsible. M order Bond return, and he defies her orders, instead meeting up with René Mathis (Giancarlo Giannini) and asking for his assistance, which he grudgingly gives, still not having quite forgiven Bond for calling him a traitor during the whole Le Chiffre ordeal. British agent Strawberry Fields (Gemma Arterton) meets them at the airport and orders Bond home, though he will hear nothing of the sort. Attending a party of Greene, Bond is set up to look like he killed Mathis, though he did not, the Bolivian police did. Bond goes on the run officially when things start going seriously sour and innocents are dying. Though everyone else is hunting Bond, M realises that he may very well be onto something, and sort of steps back to allow him some leeway. With Camille, Bond finds out that Greene is not interested in oil out in the desert, but that he is creating a drought, blocking up the water supply. It would make him immensely rich and powerful.
Camille wants revenge on Medrano for her family’s murder, and Bond wants to find out who is at the heart of the Quantum debacle, and how it all fits together. Someone needs to be held responsible for having shot M as well as robbing Vesper of her life. Will Camille get what she wants? Will Medrano pay for his sins? Will Greene gain power through successfully creating the drought, and will Bond ever work his way back into M’s good graces? Will he figure out how Quantum fits together as well as what exactly they are up to?
Quantum of Solace scores a 7/10. While most definitely not the best film of the franchise, it was not nearly as bad as criticisms would have you believe. Daniel Craig again knocks you out the park with his portrayal of Bond, who is still reeling from the loss of Vesper, and holding her accountable for everything that he feels. He is driven by a suppressed rage and serious anger problem, and is rather blasé about how he approaches most life and death situations, although you can see dying is not an option for him. I was not particularly impressed with Olga Kurylenko, she is not a particularly fascinating Bond girl overall. I just want to comment and say that I thoroughly enjoyed the theme song, Another Way To Die, but then that might be due to my being a Jack White fan. Whatever. Mathis’s death was terribly sad, and illuminated more of Bond’s character, and the relationship between M and Bond continues to impress. There were most certainly plot holes and some flaws, and Mathieu Amalric did not really impress me as the villain. He was definitely not the worst, and had a lot going for him, just something about him did not… dominate as much as you would expect a villain to. I understand that they wanted to show more of a monster integrated into society, and that they nailed. Some homage was paid back to previous Bonds, but not enough to have this whole film be a knock of to its predecessors. Felix Leiter as a character was a little bit not himself for this, and his partner was a damned pain in my toe. Overall, not a bad movie, though definitely not the strongest in the series but holds up well, a large part due to Daniel Craig’s performance, I am sure.