Terrorism in Casino Royale

I always wondered what people thought of the airport sequence. CR was the first Bond film to openly address a post-9/11 world. The villain's plot even involves the manipulation of stocks by causing an attack on a plane.

The imagery of an attack on an airport is surprisingly bold and probably one of the more 'political' moments in the series. I suppose it gives the film some real world context as attacks on airports were not obscure threats at the time. What do we think? Was it too political?

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I suspect it probably wasn't. It could have been if they hired a Muslim actor to play the terrorist but it was savvy move to not make the terrorists ideologues. Instead we get smart looking European businessmen who see terror attacks as a means of feeding their bottom line. Men like Carlos and Mollaka are hired for their skills in building bombs (we are even told they are not 'true believers' in any cause) and are financially motivated.

Nonetheless, the politics of the piece are present....

(Also, are there any Italian speakers out there? Could you help with translate this interview with Santamaria: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=msf2NZUbrwU Thank you!
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Comments

  • Matt SMatt S Oh Cult Voodoo ShopPosts: 6,522MI6 Agent
    I never once thought of this scene as being a political commentary. I just found it boring and too long!
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  • Golrush007Golrush007 South AfricaPosts: 2,918Quartermasters
    I don't see this scene as overtly 'political' in any way. But it is certainly based in real world events and concerns, in much the same way that a Cold War era Bond film has plots connected to Soviet agents, decoding machines and nuclear submarines without the film really having anything political to say.
  • LuciusNightmareLuciusNightmare Posts: 88MI6 Agent
    Golrush007 wrote:
    I don't see this scene as overtly 'political' in any way. But it is certainly based in real world events and concerns, in much the same way that a Cold War era Bond film has plots connected to Soviet agents, decoding machines and nuclear submarines without the film really having anything political to say.

    I agree with that.

    The sequence is meant to bring Bond down to 'earth.' It isn't a fantastical sequence but a relatable, real-world one. I think it is quite bold to use the imagery of 9/11 so overtly. The film doesn't shy away from saying that 'terrorism' is the evil here. In fact, it actively addresses and leans into the topic.

    I suppose CR has its cake and eats it, as they use the 'real world' imagery associated with terrorism then explain that the terrorists are actually motivated by money rather than religion. That essentially there attacks are part of a sting to get rich.

    It does sit a little uncomfortably that Carlos could be considered a Middle Eastern character - since he's the one who is tasked to carry out the attack. If they wanted to avoid any issues, they could have cast someone blonde. But I guess after 15 years, this is the first time I've thought of this, so perhaps I'm making a deal of nothing.....

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  • JTMJTM Posts: 2,962MI6 Agent
    It does sit a little uncomfortably that Carlos could be considered a Middle Eastern character - since he's the one who is tasked to carry out the attack. If they wanted to avoid any issues, they could have cast someone blonde. But I guess after 15 years, this is the first time I've thought of this, so perhaps I'm making a deal of nothing.....

    Huh? ?:) The actor that plays him is Italian. There’s nothing that even remotely suggests his character, Carlos, is Middle Eastern. It might not be totally cannon, but one of the 007 video games even mentions he’s an unemployed American electrical engineer.
  • LuciusNightmareLuciusNightmare Posts: 88MI6 Agent
    JTM wrote:
    It does sit a little uncomfortably that Carlos could be considered a Middle Eastern character - since he's the one who is tasked to carry out the attack. If they wanted to avoid any issues, they could have cast someone blonde. But I guess after 15 years, this is the first time I've thought of this, so perhaps I'm making a deal of nothing.....

    Huh? ?:) The actor that plays him is Italian. There’s nothing that even remotely suggests his character, Carlos, is Middle Eastern. It might not be totally cannon, but one of the 007 video games even mentions he’s an unemployed American electrical engineer.

    You're right.

    It was just a niggling thought. After all, the framing of the attack is different as it isn't a hijacking - which would more closely link it to 9/11 - instead, Carlos has been hired to plant a job. He's clearly a professional doing a job.

    I guess he is Italian as Claudio Santamaria is Italian and he's credited as 'Carlos'. Though the name badge is probably fake, though it may have been his name (Mollaka and Hinx are credited despite never being named onscreen).

    I never really considered his ethnicity before. Given the context of the film, I'd have assumed him to be Southen European, considering the rest of the film plays out in Europe and the guys running the organisation are European.

    I think Claudio Santamaria was cast as he looked like a cross between Peter Lorre and Vladek Sheybal. He has the perfect face for a creepy henchman.
  • welshboy78welshboy78 Posts: 9,853MI6 Agent
    Matt S wrote:
    I just found it boring and too long!

    Yeah the more times I watch CR (which is in my top 3) - I have to admit this is the dullest part of the film due to it dragging
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  • Matt SMatt S Oh Cult Voodoo ShopPosts: 6,522MI6 Agent
    welshboy78 wrote:
    Matt S wrote:
    I just found it boring and too long!

    Yeah the more times I watch CR (which is in my top 3) - I have to admit this is the dullest part of the film due to it dragging

    The free-running scene in the film is so much better. I think it helps to have more diverse scenery and different types of things happening in the sequence.
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  • LuciusNightmareLuciusNightmare Posts: 88MI6 Agent
    Matt S wrote:
    welshboy78 wrote:
    Matt S wrote:
    I just found it boring and too long!

    Yeah the more times I watch CR (which is in my top 3) - I have to admit this is the dullest part of the film due to it dragging

    The free-running scene in the film is so much better. I think it helps to have more diverse scenery and different types of things happening in the sequence.

    I think the reason that people may feel this way about the airport chase is that it's a fairly low stakes action sequence. No one is really in any danger. If Carlos succeeds than a plane explodes....that's kinda it.

    There are zero passengers on the plane as it's being unveiled that day. There is little jeopardy. The only real threat is to the stock price of Skyfleet (which is Le Chiffre's whole point). So, realistically, the chase is actually kinda moot. If Bond could have contacted M sooner, it may well have got called off and avoided all together.
  • Golrush007Golrush007 South AfricaPosts: 2,918Quartermasters
    welshboy78 wrote:
    Matt S wrote:
    I just found it boring and too long!

    Yeah the more times I watch CR (which is in my top 3) - I have to admit this is the dullest part of the film due to it dragging

    I certainly understand what you are both saying. On my initial viewings of the film I was always a little underwhelmed by the Miami section of the film. As time goes by I find myself enjoying this part of the film more, perhaps because I rewatched the Madagascar sequence so many times that eventually it became a little over-familiar, whereas the Miami chase still feels fresh whenever I rewatch it now. Yes, it's a little bit low stakes and all that, but it's still has enjoyable moments and some good action/stunt work.
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,094MI6 Agent
    Matt S wrote:
    welshboy78 wrote:

    Yeah the more times I watch CR (which is in my top 3) - I have to admit this is the dullest part of the film due to it dragging

    The free-running scene in the film is so much better. I think it helps to have more diverse scenery and different types of things happening in the sequence.

    I think the reason that people may feel this way about the airport chase is that it's a fairly low stakes action sequence. No one is really in any danger. If Carlos succeeds than a plane explodes....that's kinda it.

    There are zero passengers on the plane as it's being unveiled that day. There is little jeopardy. The only real threat is to the stock price of Skyfleet (which is Le Chiffre's whole point). So, realistically, the chase is actually kinda moot. If Bond could have contacted M sooner, it may well have got called off and avoided all together.

    There's even lower stakes to the Madagascar chase though- all we know is he's a bombmaker but no further plans than that, in fact Bond chasing him seems to seriously injure quite a lot of construction workers.
    If Carlos had blown up the huge plane with loads of people standing around it (and inside it) I think those people aren't going to be too healthy afterwards. Plus we know Le Chiffre finances terrorism, so him making megabucks is not a low stakes issue. Compared to one bombmaker... pretty high stakes.

    The Miami plane sequence is one of the few action scenes in a Bond film where the entire film pivots around it and it's actually crucial to the plot: without that happening there would be no poker game at the Casino Royale, the film wouldn't even be called that! It's a bit like the waterskiing scene in LTK: that changes the entire direction of the film too because it allows Bond to infiltrate Sanchez's operation and plant seeds of doubt in his mind.

    And I think it's an excellent action scene anyway, I'm very surprised people find it boring. The music isn't great there, it's a bit start-and-stop rather than giving it a driving urgency, so I guess that doesn't help.
  • LuciusNightmareLuciusNightmare Posts: 88MI6 Agent
    emtiem wrote:
    Matt S wrote:

    The free-running scene in the film is so much better. I think it helps to have more diverse scenery and different types of things happening in the sequence.

    I think the reason that people may feel this way about the airport chase is that it's a fairly low stakes action sequence. No one is really in any danger. If Carlos succeeds than a plane explodes....that's kinda it.

    There are zero passengers on the plane as it's being unveiled that day. There is little jeopardy. The only real threat is to the stock price of Skyfleet (which is Le Chiffre's whole point). So, realistically, the chase is actually kinda moot. If Bond could have contacted M sooner, it may well have got called off and avoided all together.

    There's even lower stakes to the Madagascar chase though- all we know is he's a bombmaker but no further plans than that, in fact Bond chasing him seems to seriously injure quite a lot of construction workers.
    If Carlos had blown up the huge plane with loads of people standing around it (and inside it) I think those people aren't going to be too healthy afterwards. Plus we know Le Chiffre finances terrorism, so him making megabucks is not a low stakes issue. Compared to one bombmaker... pretty high stakes.

    The Miami plane sequence is one of the few action scenes in a Bond film where the entire film pivots around it and it's actually crucial to the plot: without that happening there would be no poker game at the Casino Royale, the film wouldn't even be called that! It's a bit like the waterskiing scene in LTK: that changes the entire direction of the film too because it allows Bond to infiltrate Sanchez's operation and plant seeds of doubt in his mind.

    And I think it's an excellent action scene anyway, I'm very surprised people find it boring. The music isn't great there, it's a bit start-and-stop rather than giving it a driving urgency, so I guess that doesn't help.

    You're right. There are stakes. But it isn't as though innocent passengers are on the plane. In fact, I think aside the pilots, the plane is empty. Carlos is only a gun for hire, who has been equipped to blow up the plane to destroy the airline stock. It isn't a Hail Mary attempt by Bond to save the world.

    The only people in attendance are senior people in the airline industry. The stunt is merely to destroy the stock. it's just the imagery of an attack on an plane at an airport that is meant to be 'provocative' and 'timely.'

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  • walther p99walther p99 NJPosts: 3,394MI6 Agent
    I always thought SF had the most authentic portrayal of violence of the current Bond films. Bombings of government buildings and subways, shoot-outs in public areas with Bond running past ambulances, etc. None of these are of course new to Bond or action movies as a whole but it had a more real-world feeling then previous films I thought.
  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 1,032MI6 Agent
    There's a few interesting points being made.
    I don't see the sequence as having a political inference at all. The idea of terrorism being the number one enemy of the world police (ie. 007) was already established as far back as Connery battling SPECTRE and, even further in the literary Bond with Fleming's Dr No toppling US missiles in 1958.

    I agree with Matt S.
    The sequence really drags. It's no where near as interesting as the free-running sequence.

    Lucius, you say the whole movie pivots around this. Yes, in part it does. One of my criticisms of CR is that in the film Le Chiffre sets up the poker game only because Bond prevented his rather violent method of manipulating stocks and shares and he needs to recoup the cash fast to please the paying rebels. His death at the hands of Quantum comes about because of this failure. But they were aware of his schemes already - Mr White is present in Uganda when Le Chiffre explains what he's going to do with the rebels' money. So it's hardly fair on the poor man. Quantum really at that moment should be killing Bond.

    What I liked about Fleming's CR is that Le Chiffre has been mishandling SMERSH funds, pouringthem into an unprofitable chain of brothels. He must win back his money because he knows the alternative is death. Bond thwarted him, is tortured in an attempt to retrieve the winnings and Le Chiffre is shot because of his failure and lies.

    Now, if the movie had followed this narrative, it would have lacked action, but gained some character depth and appropriate motivations.
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,094MI6 Agent
    edited February 2
    emtiem wrote:

    I think the reason that people may feel this way about the airport chase is that it's a fairly low stakes action sequence. No one is really in any danger. If Carlos succeeds than a plane explodes....that's kinda it.

    There are zero passengers on the plane as it's being unveiled that day. There is little jeopardy. The only real threat is to the stock price of Skyfleet (which is Le Chiffre's whole point). So, realistically, the chase is actually kinda moot. If Bond could have contacted M sooner, it may well have got called off and avoided all together.

    There's even lower stakes to the Madagascar chase though- all we know is he's a bombmaker but no further plans than that, in fact Bond chasing him seems to seriously injure quite a lot of construction workers.
    If Carlos had blown up the huge plane with loads of people standing around it (and inside it) I think those people aren't going to be too healthy afterwards. Plus we know Le Chiffre finances terrorism, so him making megabucks is not a low stakes issue. Compared to one bombmaker... pretty high stakes.

    The Miami plane sequence is one of the few action scenes in a Bond film where the entire film pivots around it and it's actually crucial to the plot: without that happening there would be no poker game at the Casino Royale, the film wouldn't even be called that! It's a bit like the waterskiing scene in LTK: that changes the entire direction of the film too because it allows Bond to infiltrate Sanchez's operation and plant seeds of doubt in his mind.

    And I think it's an excellent action scene anyway, I'm very surprised people find it boring. The music isn't great there, it's a bit start-and-stop rather than giving it a driving urgency, so I guess that doesn't help.

    You're right. There are stakes. But it isn't as though innocent passengers are on the plane. In fact, I think aside the pilots, the plane is empty. Carlos is only a gun for hire, who has been equipped to blow up the plane to destroy the airline stock. It isn't a Hail Mary attempt by Bond to save the world.

    The only people in attendance are senior people in the airline industry. The stunt is merely to destroy the stock. it's just the imagery of an attack on an plane at an airport that is meant to be 'provocative' and 'timely.'

    Well there might be a few people on the plane we don't know about, and there are grandstands around the plane aren't there? Plus all of the service vehicles we see parked near to and underneath it, as well as all of those people who were wandering around the hangar who presumably walked out with it. How many people do you need to get injured or killed for it to be sufficiently interesting or worth doing? Senior people in the airline industry deserve to die? Pilots aren't worth saving?

    And the stunt is destroy the stock to finance global terrorism.
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,094MI6 Agent
    chrisno1 wrote:
    I agree with Matt S.
    The sequence really drags. It's no where near as interesting as the free-running sequence.

    For you, not for me. Were you bored the first time you saw it in the cinema?
    The only action sequence I remember thinking didn't work as I was watching it was the sinking house one, because it was getting in the way of the more interesting Bond/Vesper plot.
    chrisno1 wrote:
    Lucius, you say the whole movie pivots around this. Yes, in part it does. One of my criticisms of CR is that in the film Le Chiffre sets up the poker game only because Bond prevented his rather violent method of manipulating stocks and shares and he needs to recoup the cash fast to please the paying rebels. His death at the hands of Quantum comes about because of this failure. But they were aware of his schemes already - Mr White is present in Uganda when Le Chiffre explains what he's going to do with the rebels' money. So it's hardly fair on the poor man. Quantum really at that moment should be killing Bond.

    Well I guess he guaranteed there would be no risk, and he has failed/embarrassed Quantum, so that's what happens. In the novel he's made a similar unwise investment which goes tits up for him, but there is some question as to whether he's trying to make some money for himself, which would have been a nice angle for the film and would have justified Quantum's anger even more. But I think it holds together perfectly well without that: they don't tolerate failure.
    chrisno1 wrote:
    What I liked about Fleming's CR is that Le Chiffre has been mishandling SMERSH funds, pouringthem into an unprofitable chain of brothels. He must win back his money because he knows the alternative is death. Bond thwarted him, is tortured in an attempt to retrieve the winnings and Le Chiffre is shot because of his failure and lies.

    Now, if the movie had followed this narrative, it would have lacked action, but gained some character depth and appropriate motivations.

    That's the same thing though: the film Le Chiffre mishandles the funds, guarantees no risk when there clearly was risk of the scheme being uncovered and stopped, and must win back his money because he knows the alternative is death.
  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 1,032MI6 Agent
    Sorry, emtiem, I mistakenly attributed Lucius to your post.

    I would accept your point about failure if it wasn't that - as far as I can deduce - Quantum know what Le Chiffre is doing. They recommended him to the Ugandans. It is never suggested that Le Chiffre is mishandling funds for his personal gain, and it isn't Quantum's money anyway - why do they care if a stocks and shares scheme goes tits up? It isn't their money and their reputation is fairly intact - Bond even does them a favour by killing the Ugandan leader.

    One must assume therefore that their own money is involved - as I suggest it should be - yet this is not made explicitly clear either. Even if so, Quantum still know and authorise the risks being taken.

    And, as I recall, yes, I was fairly blase about the chase at the time, chiefly because, including all the Miami scenes, the killing of Demetrius etc, it's so very very long. I don't really like extended action sequences. They tend to be unrealistic. This penchant for making everything bigger, longer, louder is a very dispiriting modern phenomenon I have grown to detest.
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,094MI6 Agent
    edited February 2
    chrisno1 wrote:
    Sorry, emtiem, I mistakenly attributed Lucius to your post.

    I would accept your point about failure if it wasn't that - as far as I can deduce - Quantum know what Le Chiffre is doing. They recommended him to the Ugandans. It is never suggested that Le Chiffre is mishandling funds for his personal gain, and it isn't Quantum's money anyway - why do they care if a stocks and shares scheme goes tits up? It isn't their money and their reputation is fairly intact - Bond even does them a favour by killing the Ugandan leader.

    One must assume therefore that their own money is involved - as I suggest it should be - yet this is not made explicitly clear either. Even if so, Quantum still know and authorise the risks being taken.

    Yes I do think it not being their money, and the Ugandans being killed, does fudge it a little; but he does still fail them. Presumably the whole Ugandan deal was supposed to make Quantum some money too (otherwise why do it?), but the entire job is a bust. So Quantum certainly lose out on it, and I don't think it's established that they know exactly how Le Chiffre will get the money, just that he promises he will. And his act of desperation of calling the poker game is a sign to them that he's letting them down, plus it's actually fairly insulting in a way, to try and make amends with a poker game.

    Quantum clearly have something to gain by the Ugandans doing whatever they plan to do with the money; whether that's money into Quantum's pockets directly or benefiting from them getting into power or whatever- if they didn't stand to gain they wouldn't be involved. That's all down the drain because of Le Chiffre, so his employers have lost out because of him, just as in the book. He leaves a trail of evidence and chose unreliable people so his scheme could be stopped, and then he dares to try to win it all back in a card game. Of course they'd kill him for that.
    chrisno1 wrote:
    And, as I recall, yes, I was fairly blase about the chase at the time, chiefly because, including all the Miami scenes, the killing of Demetrius etc, it's so very very long. I don't really like extended action sequences. They tend to be unrealistic. This penchant for making everything bigger, longer, louder is a very dispiriting modern phenomenon I have grown to detest.

    Well fair enough. I think it's a good, tense sequence.
  • LuciusNightmareLuciusNightmare Posts: 88MI6 Agent
    emtiem wrote:
    Well there might be a few people on the plane we don't know about, and there are grandstands around the plane aren't there? Plus all of the service vehicles we see parked near to and underneath it, as well as all of those people who were wandering around the hangar who presumably walked out with it. How many people do you need to get injured or killed for it to be sufficiently interesting or worth doing? Senior people in the airline industry deserve to die? Pilots aren't worth saving?

    I'm not saying I'm disappointed that more people aren't under threat. I'm just saying the film makes a point of saying the plane is a prototype being unveiled. The intention is clearly not to harm civilians. They are in fact shown to be evacuating the airport.

    It's basically Eon making a point to show that civilians aren't under threat. They did something similar in SF where the tube that is attacked is shown to be empty.

    The real question is whether Carlos is sufficiently shown to be a 'gun for hire.' Does the film explain that?
  • Matt SMatt S Oh Cult Voodoo ShopPosts: 6,522MI6 Agent
    emtiem wrote:
    chrisno1 wrote:
    I agree with Matt S.
    The sequence really drags. It's no where near as interesting as the free-running sequence.

    For you, not for me. Were you bored the first time you saw it in the cinema?
    The only action sequence I remember thinking didn't work as I was watching it was the sinking house one, because it was getting in the way of the more interesting Bond/Vesper plot.

    I was bored during this scene the first time I saw it in the cinema. I didn't like the sinking house either as it seemed too-forced into the story. The sequences I found exciting were the free-running chase and the car chase. The car chase was disappointing because it came to its end much too soon.

    I wish the film had tried to find a way to weave the set pieces into Fleming's story rather than tack then onto the beginning of Fleming's story. It give a poor pace to the film.
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  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,094MI6 Agent
    Matt S wrote:
    emtiem wrote:
    chrisno1 wrote:
    I agree with Matt S.
    The sequence really drags. It's no where near as interesting as the free-running sequence.

    For you, not for me. Were you bored the first time you saw it in the cinema?
    The only action sequence I remember thinking didn't work as I was watching it was the sinking house one, because it was getting in the way of the more interesting Bond/Vesper plot.

    I was bored during this scene the first time I saw it in the cinema. I didn't like the sinking house either as it seemed too-forced into the story. The sequences I found exciting were the free-running chase and the car chase. The car chase was disappointing because it came to its end much too soon.

    You're the Goldilocks of Bond viewers: "this one's too long, this one's too short!" :D
    Matt S wrote:
    I wish the film had tried to find a way to weave the set pieces into Fleming's story rather than tack then onto the beginning of Fleming's story. It give a poor pace to the film.

    It did put action inside Fleming's story..? But he can hardly go rushing off to do some skydiving every time there's a break in the gambling.

    It's a great film, I don't recognise all of this criticism as belonging to this film. I've never heard of Bond fans being bored by it before.
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,094MI6 Agent
    emtiem wrote:
    Well there might be a few people on the plane we don't know about, and there are grandstands around the plane aren't there? Plus all of the service vehicles we see parked near to and underneath it, as well as all of those people who were wandering around the hangar who presumably walked out with it. How many people do you need to get injured or killed for it to be sufficiently interesting or worth doing? Senior people in the airline industry deserve to die? Pilots aren't worth saving?

    I'm not saying I'm disappointed that more people aren't under threat. I'm just saying the film makes a point of saying the plane is a prototype being unveiled. The intention is clearly not to harm civilians. They are in fact shown to be evacuating the airport.

    It's basically Eon making a point to show that civilians aren't under threat. They did something similar in SF where the tube that is attacked is shown to be empty.

    Civilians aren't the target of this attack (although some will certainly get hurt, plus the bus they crash into does seem to have passengers), but the point of terrorism (which will benefit from this attack) is generally to hurt innocent people.
    The real question is whether Carlos is sufficiently shown to be a 'gun for hire.' Does the film explain that?

    Is there any reason to suspect otherwise? He works for Dimitrios/Le Chiffre and there's never any hint of idealism in the chain, just commerce.
  • LuciusNightmareLuciusNightmare Posts: 88MI6 Agent
    emtiem wrote:
    emtiem wrote:
    Well there might be a few people on the plane we don't know about, and there are grandstands around the plane aren't there? Plus all of the service vehicles we see parked near to and underneath it, as well as all of those people who were wandering around the hangar who presumably walked out with it. How many people do you need to get injured or killed for it to be sufficiently interesting or worth doing? Senior people in the airline industry deserve to die? Pilots aren't worth saving?

    I'm not saying I'm disappointed that more people aren't under threat. I'm just saying the film makes a point of saying the plane is a prototype being unveiled. The intention is clearly not to harm civilians. They are in fact shown to be evacuating the airport.

    It's basically Eon making a point to show that civilians aren't under threat. They did something similar in SF where the tube that is attacked is shown to be empty.

    Civilians aren't the target of this attack (although some will certainly get hurt, plus the bus they crash into does seem to have passengers), but the point of terrorism (which will benefit from this attack) is generally to hurt innocent people.
    The real question is whether Carlos is sufficiently shown to be a 'gun for hire.' Does the film explain that?

    Is there any reason to suspect otherwise? He works for Dimitrios/Le Chiffre and there's never any hint of idealism in the chain, just commerce.

    Quite right.

    I don't know why I got this into my head. I'm a little OCD.

    Though, if you really wanted to make a point of it, the attack on the airport does lean into the 9/11 imagery. Though it's probably obnoxious and ignorant to say that Claudio Santamaria playing Carlos is meant to pass as Muslim.
  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 1,032MI6 Agent
    emtiem wrote:
    It's a great film, I don't recognise all of this criticism as belonging to this film. I've never heard of Bond fans being bored by it before.

    See my review: you'll see I quite like it.

    https://www.ajb007.co.uk/topic/31479/two-weeks-of-bondage-reviews/page/2/

    But I am being consistent on my point:

    The early scenes around Prague, Madagascar, the Bahamas and Miami, reveal Bond as tough and focussed, if slightly out of control. He takes more of the rough than the smooth – he turns down the offer of a bout of love making in favour of chasing the bad guys – but still suffers from a sense of the overtly spectacular. There are two long winded pursuits, first around a building site and then, incongruously, Miami airport at night. The first of these is well edited and features some excellent stunt work, particularly from the free-runner Sebastien Foucan. The latter however is pure Die Hard and reminded me of the worst offences of the Pierce Brosnan era.

    What makes the scenes paricularly heavy going isn’t just their excessive length,a problem in itself, but the later impression that they are not neccessary to support the story. After forty minutes of Bond chasing small time baddies, the kingpin, Le Chiffre, organises a high stakes poker game in Montenegro. Thanks to Bond’s unintentional involvement, Le Chiffre’s stock market investments lost his terrorist employers millions and he needs to recoup the money. It resembles the story concocted by Fleming, but in the novel Le Chiffre’s profligate spending was entirely self inflicted and his ruse to generate money an elaborate cover to avoid the Russian secret service. Here it is done with full knowledge of his backers, which makes his eventual demise unlikely.
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,094MI6 Agent
    emtiem wrote:

    I'm not saying I'm disappointed that more people aren't under threat. I'm just saying the film makes a point of saying the plane is a prototype being unveiled. The intention is clearly not to harm civilians. They are in fact shown to be evacuating the airport.

    It's basically Eon making a point to show that civilians aren't under threat. They did something similar in SF where the tube that is attacked is shown to be empty.

    Civilians aren't the target of this attack (although some will certainly get hurt, plus the bus they crash into does seem to have passengers), but the point of terrorism (which will benefit from this attack) is generally to hurt innocent people.
    The real question is whether Carlos is sufficiently shown to be a 'gun for hire.' Does the film explain that?

    Is there any reason to suspect otherwise? He works for Dimitrios/Le Chiffre and there's never any hint of idealism in the chain, just commerce.

    Quite right.

    I don't know why I got this into my head. I'm a little OCD.

    Though, if you really wanted to make a point of it, the attack on the airport does lean into the 9/11 imagery. Though it's probably obnoxious and ignorant to say that Claudio Santamaria playing Carlos is meant to pass as Muslim.

    I think it's a fair point. They have cast someone who looks a bit 'swarthy' as they used to say, there seems to have been a choice to go for someone who looks a bit dark and foreign. And if you're dealing with an airport attack, that does, as you point out, evoke certain responses in the viewer.
    I don't think they're saying he's Muslim, but they're not really falling over themselves to say he isn't.
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,094MI6 Agent
    chrisno1 wrote:
    emtiem wrote:
    It's a great film, I don't recognise all of this criticism as belonging to this film. I've never heard of Bond fans being bored by it before.

    See my review: you'll see I quite like it.

    https://www.ajb007.co.uk/topic/31479/two-weeks-of-bondage-reviews/page/2/

    But I am being consistent on my point:

    The early scenes around Prague, Madagascar, the Bahamas and Miami, reveal Bond as tough and focussed, if slightly out of control. He takes more of the rough than the smooth – he turns down the offer of a bout of love making in favour of chasing the bad guys – but still suffers from a sense of the overtly spectacular. There are two long winded pursuits, first around a building site and then, incongruously, Miami airport at night. The first of these is well edited and features some excellent stunt work, particularly from the free-runner Sebastien Foucan. The latter however is pure Die Hard and reminded me of the worst offences of the Pierce Brosnan era.

    What makes the scenes paricularly heavy going isn’t just their excessive length,a problem in itself, but the later impression that they are not neccessary to support the story. After forty minutes of Bond chasing small time baddies, the kingpin, Le Chiffre, organises a high stakes poker game in Montenegro. Thanks to Bond’s unintentional involvement, Le Chiffre’s stock market investments lost his terrorist employers millions and he needs to recoup the money. It resembles the story concocted by Fleming, but in the novel Le Chiffre’s profligate spending was entirely self inflicted and his ruse to generate money an elaborate cover to avoid the Russian secret service. Here it is done with full knowledge of his backers, which makes his eventual demise unlikely.

    You've kind of ignored my point about how Le Chiffre's demise is still self-inflicted though, and how Quantum did lose out because of him. In the book Le Chiffre's plan only failed because the French laws about brothels changed, in the film it's down more to his poor judgement and risk-taking. The book is more about bad luck; baccarat is a game of luck whereas poker is a game of skill.
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 17,628MI6 Agent
    I think it's perfectly handled. Many of the earlier movies acknowledged the cold war was there, but didn't let the story be about politics. Much in the same way CR acknowledged terrorism now was a part of our world, but at the same time made sure it wasn't about ideology.
  • LuciusNightmareLuciusNightmare Posts: 88MI6 Agent
    edited February 3
    emtiem wrote:
    emtiem wrote:

    Civilians aren't the target of this attack (although some will certainly get hurt, plus the bus they crash into does seem to have passengers), but the point of terrorism (which will benefit from this attack) is generally to hurt innocent people.



    Is there any reason to suspect otherwise? He works for Dimitrios/Le Chiffre and there's never any hint of idealism in the chain, just commerce.

    Quite right.

    I don't know why I got this into my head. I'm a little OCD.

    Though, if you really wanted to make a point of it, the attack on the airport does lean into the 9/11 imagery. Though it's probably obnoxious and ignorant to say that Claudio Santamaria playing Carlos is meant to pass as Muslim.

    I think it's a fair point. They have cast someone who looks a bit 'swarthy' as they used to say, there seems to have been a choice to go for someone who looks a bit dark and foreign. And if you're dealing with an airport attack, that does, as you point out, evoke certain responses in the viewer.
    I don't think they're saying he's Muslim, but they're not really falling over themselves to say he isn't.

    Again, excellently put.

    I suppose the 'get out of jail' card is that they cast Claudio Santamaria and named the character Carlos. Had they cast someone who looked more like, say Billy Magnussen, we wouldn't even entertain this conversation. Which may say more about my own preconceptions. Which is equally as concerning.

    You actually have the opposite problem in NTTD where you actually have Rami Malek and Dali Bensallah playing villains. Though I understand that they won't be playing their own ethnicities. However, we don't know how much the film will actually address this. In my opinion, Safin sounds like an Arabic name.
  • LuciusNightmareLuciusNightmare Posts: 88MI6 Agent
    I recently watched Star Trek Into Darkness, which attempts to evoke imagery from 9/11 and terrorism in a much more overt way. Probably more problematically.

    (1) Firstly, you have an actual suicide bombing sequence in the City of London. We are told numerous innocent people die. The actual bomber is played by Noah Clarke and we meet his family, who are clearly Asian. The character is named 'Thomas', but it does leave a bit of a sour taste.

    (2) Next, we are told the attack was orchestrated by a man named 'Khan.' Which is a Muslim name. Though, we find out he isn't motivated by religious ideology but personal revenge.

    (3) There's literally a scene where Khan weaponises a aircraft and crashed it into buildings and seemingly destroys half of San Francisco.

    star-trek2-movie-screencaps.com-13358.jpg?strip=all

    There was definitely a fad, with 'The Avengers' and 'Man of Steel' all using the 9/11 imagery as well. I suppose, in this respect, CR and SF will be viewed by film historians in the same light.

    In fairness to 'Into Darkness', it's half a good movie. The first half is actually provocative and compelling. The second half is a mess. The aspects of the plot dealing with terrorism is by far the most interesting stuff, including the hunt for Khan. Then it goes downhill when they capture him. What 'Into Darkness' does have going for it is Alice Eve (who is basically playing Denise Richards from TWINE)...Hot damn

    star-trek2-movie-screencaps.com-7498.jpg?strip=all
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,094MI6 Agent
    I laughed at that underwear scene in the cinema. Absolutely pathetic.

    I agree with that ship crashing scene- it felt so strange to see a scene in an action adventure movie (and not a disaster movie) where thousands and thousands of people were being killed in front of us. I know millions die in Star Wars, but it's not quite the same thing: this is the heroes failing to save people in the final act.
  • LuciusNightmareLuciusNightmare Posts: 88MI6 Agent
    emtiem wrote:
    I laughed at that underwear scene in the cinema. Absolutely pathetic.

    I agree with that ship crashing scene- it felt so strange to see a scene in an action adventure movie (and not a disaster movie) where thousands and thousands of people were being killed in front of us. I know millions die in Star Wars, but it's not quite the same thing: this is the heroes failing to save people in the final act.

    Come on, i'm sure you enjoyed that shot it a little ;)

    But you're 100% right. the terrorism and politics of 'Into Darkness' never really solidifies into anything noteworthy or relatable and instead come across as half-formed (and not particularly timely). I'm not against the idea of using real-world parallels in blockbusters flirting with real-world ideas. It's actually why I think the impact of the sequences in CR and SF are actually quite successful.
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