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Topic: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

I just read a good article on JBR about screenwriters Purvis and Wade. In that piece it's suggested Skyfall would have fit better as Brosnan's last Bond. I think it's an interesting idea. While it's a very good film, SF seemed a bit strange because Craig played a new 00 agent in CR and only two movies later he was the old agent. QoS was even a direct sequel to CR, happening only half an hour or so after the end of CR!
Brosnan on the other hand had four Bond films under his belt when he quit. One wonders if SF should have been his last Bond after DAD or instead of DAD. He would have been in the right stage of his career to play the aging agent regardless. Brosnan expressed a desire to play Bond with more acting scenes and drama and less quips, gadgets and wall-to-wall action, so Skyfall would have been perfect for that. What's your opinion?

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

Well maybe if it replaced DAD - hard to imagine a more serious film like Skyfall following Brosnans Kite surfing, invisible car and John Cleese

They would have had to lighten things up in the script to fit Brosnans era mood wise - its a bit dark for his tenure

Though I get your point - they did the whole "over the hill" thing with Daniel Craig at least a film too early

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

Yeah it's hard not to feel he just wouldn't have been as good in it. Plus Skyfall is possibly more about setting up the new MI6 than it is ending the old.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

I agree. Brosnan's Skyfall would need some more humour.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

Wouldn‘t have worked. Brosnan never was that type of Bond we see in Skyfall. It would‘ve had to be majorly rewritten in order to suit him.

Would the end product still be the kind of Skyfall we know today? No, no resemblance.

The name is Walker by the way.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

One of the things I've always found curious about "Skyfall" is that the over-the-hill theme isn't essential to the overall story. You could take that part out, or tone it down so it's more about Bond being world weary than "played out," and the film still holds together. It was an unnecessary creative choice in my opinion that put EON into an awkward place with Craig's character arc as Bond. We essentially miss his entire active career as a 00.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

Good point, Cheverian.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

good What If!!
It would have worked as a followup to the The World Is Not Enough, if that film had been more consistently focussed on the tragedy and not introduced a silly secondary Bondgirl in its final scenes.

(years later, Brosnan did play a worldweary secret agent coming out of retirement in November Man)

Cheverian wrote:

the over-the-hill theme isn't essential to the overall story

it is essential, on a thematic level, because it parallels M's forced retirement, the cabinet ministers insistence on dragging MI6 "out of the shadows", all the action in Churchill's WWII bunkers (the shadows) and that statue of the British Bulldog on M's desk. When I last watched this film I was impressed by how much is going on thematically (the poetry reading was a bit much though).

Narratively, it does matter that Bond is over the hill. He makes a lot of mistakes over the course of this mission, and everything that could go wrong ultimately does. I'm surprised he kept his job after getting his own boss killed!

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

I think Brosnan could have been great in a Skyfall like Bond film.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

caractacus potts wrote:

it is essential, on a thematic level, because it parallels M's forced retirement, the cabinet ministers insistence on dragging MI6 "out of the shadows", all the action in Churchill's WWII bunkers (the shadows) and that statue of the British Bulldog on M's desk. When I last watched this film I was impressed by how much is going on thematically (the poetry reading was a bit much though).

I am speaking specifically about Bond here. You're absolutely right that everything else is thematically linked, but what those elements of decline are mostly connected to is the end of Judi Dench's character arc as M. "Skyfall" is the conclusion of her story. She's the one played out. And everything you mention echoes that essential thread.

The writers, however, made a decision to include Bond in this theme when it wasn't necessary IMO to do so. As I said, why can't he be feeling some world weariness or obsolete as a 00 (and of course bitter at M for what she did to him in the PTS) but not old as a man? They really committed to playing up Craig as a greybeard — literally!

And of course, it works nicely in the context of "Skyfall." The film made a billion bucks and was much lauded. But it hamstrung the franchise is what I'm saying. Now, given how slowly EON makes movies, it probably didn't matter. They were never going to make that mid-career "Bond on a mission" film many of us wanted for Craig.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

He wasn't that convincing as a rookie either.
I think Craig just specialised in playing the more extreme ends of Bonds double oh career (beginning and end), which I guess has more dramatic potential. Especially when the stories are all about him as a person, and his childhood house and long-lost foster brother etc.
The mid-career standard issue missions may not have had enough personal dramatic potential for his approach?

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

I think your right and he has also stated that in interviews.   He clearly wants more depth / background to his Bond and its been stated on the record.    Im a huge DC fan but I think there are only so many films you can do this personal journey thing and NTTD is prob a good time to bow out (and hopefully forget the step brother crap)

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

caractacus potts wrote:

He wasn't that convincing as a rookie either.
I think Craig just specialised in playing the more extreme ends of Bonds double oh career (beginning and end), which I guess has more dramatic potential. Especially when the stories are all about him as a person, and his childhood house and long-lost foster brother etc.
The mid-career standard issue missions may not have had enough personal dramatic potential for his approach?

Craig was too old to play a rookie in Casino Royale. By trying to make every moment of Bond's life more dramatic than the next, these moments lose impact. Bond's life continues to be shaken up, but what exactly is getting shook up?

Skyfall's kind of story with Brosnan would have have more impact because we would know why he's over the hill. It would have been a better follow-up to The World Is Not Enough.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

Pierce Brosnan's Bond films had their weaknesses, but in some ways they did a better job shaking up the formula. They did things like making a fellow 00-agent or a former flame of Bond's the villains. Sometimes Craig's Bonds went too far. CR was Fleming and justified in making it personal, so CR needed a revenge sequel, something we didn't get in DAF after OHMSS, so making QoS personal was also justified. That's when the scriptwriters should have made a couple of mission centred Bonds. Instead the filmmakers believed the recipe was to continue making the plots about personal stuff. As good as SF was, that was a mistake IMO. Brosnan on the other hand had earned a Bond-centered and personal film after his first three.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

Number24 wrote:

Pierce Brosnan's Bond films had their weaknesses, but in some ways they did a better job shaking up the formula. They did things like making a fellow 00-agent or a former flame of Bond's the villains. Sometimes Craig's Bonds went too far. CR was Fleming and justified in making it personal, so CR needed a revenge sequel, something we didn't get in DAF after OHMSS, so making QoS personal was also justified. That's when the scriptwriters should have made a couple of mission centred Bonds. Instead the filmmakers believed the recipe was to continue making the plots about personal stuff. As good as SF was, that was a mistake IMO. Brosnan on the other hand had earned a Bond-centered and personal film after his first three.

QOS didn't need to be so much about revenge. It was justified, but unnecessary. Fleming didn't write LALD as a personal story. He wrote an adventure story to succeed his first story. I thought that's what CR set up by the end to come after it, with Mr White captured. It seemed to be settled at that point.

Last edited by Matt S (15th Apr 2020 21:39)

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

Matt S wrote:
Number24 wrote:

Pierce Brosnan's Bond films had their weaknesses, but in some ways they did a better job shaking up the formula. They did things like making a fellow 00-agent or a former flame of Bond's the villains. Sometimes Craig's Bonds went too far. CR was Fleming and justified in making it personal, so CR needed a revenge sequel, something we didn't get in DAF after OHMSS, so making QoS personal was also justified. That's when the scriptwriters should have made a couple of mission centred Bonds. Instead the filmmakers believed the recipe was to continue making the plots about personal stuff. As good as SF was, that was a mistake IMO. Brosnan on the other hand had earned a Bond-centered and personal film after his first three.

QOS didn't need to be so much about revenge. Fleming didn't write LALD as a personal story. He wrote an adventure story to succeed his first story. I thought that's what CR set up by the end to come after it, with Mr White captured. It seemed to be settled at that point.


Yup - guess they were just hell bent on having another SPECTRE so moulded things quickly with Quantum.

Im still annoyed they didn't carry on with Quantum and chucked SPECTRE into the mix with no proper explanation.  Would of been better to have shown SPECTRE overthrow Quantum in the past film or show it as a "department" then just focus with the Step-Bro thing.

Wonder if Quantum will be mentioned in NTTD to explain things and what actually happened.   Im guessing it will just be ignored and another loose end that we have to live with.   Hopefully im wrong

Instagram - bondclothes007

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

I have a feeling you will be quite right.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

I don't think the revenge angle was the problem with QoS. Other tings like a rushed script and mad editing were the real problems. There are two revenge Bond films - LTK and QoS. LTK has some problems, but the structure of the plot is very good, so it worked.
QoS didn't have a solid script, instead it had a director and editor who'd seen Bourne too many times. I think the audience were ready for a Bond revenge film at the time.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

Number24 wrote:

I don't think the revenge angle was the problem with QoS. Other tings like a rushed script and mad editing were the real problems..

Yes, I hated (and still hate) the editing.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

I think the editing in the Bourne films was well done and fit the films. In QoS it was badly done, but even if it had worked it wouldn't have fit the Bond films.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

DC was right for Skyfall. I couldn't see Brosnan fitting as well, but that is not a criticism of Brosnan. There were elements in DAD, November Man, Tailor of Panama where one can see how things might have been. He can do dark and serious but personally I'm not sure I wouldn't have liked to have seen Brosnan's Bond with so much angst and pain. That is what has become synonymous with DC's Bond, what he does well and what many will remember his films by. I don't mind the personal, revenge, tragedy stuff now and again, it has contributed to some truly great pieces in the films, but with DC, it has been over and over again and dominated his five films. He is Unlucky Alf!

A stand alone mission movie in Craig's tenure would have been great and very refreshing.

I think with NTTD they will rack up the personal issues from SPECTRE another notch. DC's influence on production over the last few films has been too much in places IMHO. Rightly or wrongly, Cubby would never have allowed his lead actor as much influence over affairs as BB and MGW have. At the end of the day though, the films are still entertaining and continue to make a packet at the box office so objectives are being met.

"Any of the opposition around..?"

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

Skyfall was really the one which should of been his standalone, I wonder if EON will ever acknowledge the fans dismay of SPECTRE-gate in interviews down the line.

Brosnan indeed showed he can play dark as per November Man - however he is such a charming guy I think EON got his Bond character balance correct just maybe not the whacky parts in the scripts.   I guess they wanted something lighter after Dalton so I presume we will get something slightly lighter then DCs Bond for the next one

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

Number24 wrote:

I think the editing in the Bourne films was well done and fit the films. In QoS it was badly done, but even if it had worked it wouldn't have fit the Bond films.


Its just the PTS car chase editing that I dont like.

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

welshboy78 wrote:
Number24 wrote:

I think the editing in the Bourne films was well done and fit the films. In QoS it was badly done, but even if it had worked it wouldn't have fit the Bond films.


Its just the PTS car chase editing that I dont like.

I wasn't a fan of the PTS editing when I first saw it in the cinema as I felt it was just too jumpy and high-octane, but I absolutely love it now.

"Any of the opposition around..?"

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Re: Would Skyfall had been the perfect last film for Brosnan?

welshboy78 wrote:

Skyfall was really the one which should of been his standalone, I wonder if EON will ever acknowledge the fans dismay of SPECTRE-gate in interviews down the line.

I agree, I still consider it Craig's only standalone film. No Vesper, Madeleine, Quantum, or Spectre.

@ddspike21