5 August 2012 | hitchcockthelegend
Revenge is not hard to fathom for a man who believes in nothing.
The World is Not Enough is directed by Michael Apted and adapted to screenplay by Neal Purvis, Robert Wade and Bruce Feirstein, using characters created by Ian Fleming. Music is scored by David Arnold and cinematography by Adrian Biddle.
Bond 19 and 007 is required to protect a female oil magnate from potential assassination, but it soon becomes apparent that something far bigger and sinister is around the corner.
Pierce Brosnan returns for his third turn as super suave secret agent James Bond and all the crucial elements for the franchise are firmly in place. From the exhilarating pre-credit sequence down the river Thames (14 minutes worth) to the glorious over the top explosive finale, this is a Bond film for those that enjoy the cheeky action led mania over thought and depth. Into the Bondian mix are the usual stalwarts; Judi Dench as M, Samantha Bond as Moneypenny, Desmond Llewelyn as Q (bidding a sad farewell to the franchise with a poignant moment) and Robbie Coltrane joyously returns as Zukovsky. Bond girl duties fall to Sophie Marceau (beautiful and solid) and Denise Richards (sexy, elfin like, but out of her depth) and the psycho for hire role lands at the considerably fine feet of Robert Carlyle, even if the latter is badly underused.
The World Is Not Enough (the Bond family motto) is a whizz bang entry in the series and finds Brosnan well settled in the role; nailing the multitude of traits that make Bond a man that women want to bed and a man that men want to be. Locales are lovely and interesting (Turkey, France, Spain, Azerbaijan), the plot carries some intelligence (with a decent mystery element for a change), characterisations are high end and Arnold's score is a safe accompaniment; as is the title song by Garbage. It is, however, all too aware of wanting to appease Bond fans across the spectrum. Thus the comedy moments come off as saggy and the more scientific aspects (as gloriously ridiculous as they are) feel more like auto-pilot plotting. Still, you get what you pay for with 90s Bond, and the action sequences are terrific. After the mixed Tomorrow Never Dies the makers were clearly intent on taking the fans on a ripper of a ride, and no doubt about it, they achieve that in spades; with the two hour running time just flying by.
Eon of course would take things one step too far three years later with the nadir that was Die Another Day, thus making this the last good Bond film before Daniel Craig's fabulous re-invention arrived in 2006. 7/10