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die another day

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James Bond's Die Another Day Mission Profile

Under suspicion that a North Korean named Colonel Moon is stockpiling weapons to use in an invasion of South Korea and Japan, James Bond is sent in under the guise of an African diamond smuggler to kill Moon. After succeeding in his mission, Bond is captured by the North Koreans, held captive and tortured for 14 months. When he is eventually released in a trade for Moon's right hand man, Zao, Bond finds himself out of the graces of her Majesty's secret service. Following Zao to Cuba and in search of the person who set him up, Bond meets Jinx, an American NSA agent who is also looking for Zao. The chase warms up (or cools down as the case may be) in billionaire diamond tycoon Gustav Graves' Ice Palace in Iceland. Here, Bond finds Graves, Zao and a satellite called Icarus which is capable of lighting the globe or emitting a sun-powered laser on a specific point on the globe. After escaping from the Ice Palace and being betrayed by a fellow MI6 agent, Bond and Jinx find themselves battling Graves and the MI6 agent aboard a jumbo-jet plummeting to the earth.
 


die another day cast

Pierce Brosnan
Halle Berry
Toby Stephens
Rosamund Pike
Rick Yune
Judi Dench
John Cleese
Michael Madsen
Colin Salmon
Samantha Bond
Kenneth Tsang
Will Yun Lee
Lawrence Makoare
Mikhail Gorevoy
Emilio Echevarría
James Bond 007
Giacinta "Jinx" Jordan
Gustav Graves
Miranda Frost
Zao
M
Q
Damian Falco
Charles Robinson
Miss Moneypenny
General Moon
Colonel Moon
Mr. Kil
Vlad
Raoul
Die Another Day picture007 Die another day cover



Review

Quite possibly the most hyped of all the 007 James Bond films, Die Another Day is essentially two movies in one. Fans of classic James Bond 007 films will revel at the slow character development, Bond's early reliance on his own skill and knowledge, the inside jokes and references to prior movies and the capture/torture sequence. Those who crave pure, nonsensical action sequences will find their glee with the movie's final scenes both in Iceland and aboard Graves' jet.

In the beginning of the movie, Bond really seems to be returning to his Fleming roots. He has to rely on his own wit to get himself out of situations, not Q's gadgets. In fact, Q does not even make an appearance until halfway through the film. Also back are some nuances that have been missing since the Connery era. During the pre-title sequence, Bond takes the diamond smuggler Van Bierk's sunglasses and puts them on while flashing a wry smile at the man. Another example is when Bond infiltrates the DNA clinic; when he runs through a patient's room he stops for a moment to take a few grapes from the bowl by the hospital bed. He emerges from the room nonchalantly popping the grapes into his mouth, just like in Thunderball. It's things like this that make Bond who he is: a suave, sophisticated gentleman agent.

Where James Bond's Die Another Day fails is in trying to combine this classic James Bond element with a modern action film. The final sequences in Iceland and aboard Graves' jet contained enough action for the entire movie, if it were spread out evenly. The film would have been better if it had left the plot at Bond's investigation into his betrayal and then looking to even the score between him, Zao and whomever the MI6 turncoat is. This alone is a fascinating plot that, at first, seems to be the focal point of the film at first. However, perhaps out of fear that moviegoers would not accept this retro-Bond story, the movie takes a turn for the worse with the convoluted subplot of the Icarus satellite and the aforementioned ending scenes.

In an effort to appeal to everyone, the frantic final 45 minutes of the film reveal that Gustav Graves is actually General Moon, the North Korean General presumed dead in the teaser sequence. Miranda Frost, the better of the two Bond girls, actually works for Graves and that his plot is, in reality, the invasion of South Korea and Japan in an effort to make North Korea the foremost superpower in the world. Had these final 45 minutes been the focal point of the entire movie it might have worked better. Instead, this tacked on plot dilutes an otherwise fine movie.

In conclusion, Die Another Day should have ended in Iceland with Bond killing Graves, Zao and Frost in the Ice Palace. Had the credits rolled at that point, the absurd CGI stunt could have been excused and the movie could have gone down as one of the best in the series. Instead, Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli brought us back to North Korea for perhaps one of the lowest points in the last 40 years.

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Score

Overall

BA.Ratings
8/10



Best line
Bond: Vodka Martini, with ice if you can spare it...

Biggest mistake
The CGI-surfing scene in the middle of the movie:
Bond just looked like a goofed up PS2-character

Distinguishing feature
None really, Die Aanother Day just refers as much as possible to the other 19 Bondmovies,
since it is the 40th anniversary.

Tag Line
Die Another Day


Veronica's Review

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