Starring: Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ben Whishaw, Naomi Harris

Director: Sam Mendes

Rating: 5/5

It has been a long four wait but James Bond is finally back on the big screen as Daniel Craig returns to the role of 007.

And four years may have been a long time but it was worth every second as Skyfall is not only one of the best movies of the year but also one of the best movies in the Bond franchise.

Bond's loyalty to M is tested as her past comes back to haunt her. As MI6 comes under attack, 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost.

This is a Bond movie that both nods back to the past as well as looks to the future as director Sam Mendes blends the old and the new wonderfully.

The franchise may be celebrating its 50th anniversary this year yet Skyfall feels contemporary but without ever forgetting where it came from

The sarcasm and wit of the central character is back as Daniel Craig really is on top form - this is a script and a story arc that really allows him to get his teeth into the character of 007.

We see a more human side to the character than ever before as the audience gets an insight into what he has to endure to project Queen and country and the toll that that takes on him both physically and mentally.

To see this more emotional side to Bond is rather a refreshing change, not doubt there will be some people that don’t like the move away from cold hearted killer, but I think it works incredibly well.

Javier Bardem is also excellent as Silva - he really is an actor who was made to play a bad guy; hence the reason why he has an Oscar for doing just that.

Bardem brings a modern day menace to the role as well as having the eccentricity of the Bond villains of old. Bardem brings a menace as well as a charm to this role and his scenes with Craig are some of the best in the movie.

It’s great to see Judi Dench have more to do as M this time around and she really grabs onto this opportunity and runs with it.

There are some great scenes between M and 007 and you can see that there is a real a real bond between them - even if they both try to down play just how much they care about each other.

Ben Whishaw is also an excellent addition to the franchise as Q and he and Craig banter well together throughout the film; the scene in the art gallery being a particular highlight.

The action sequences are simply fantastic from the opening in Istanbul to the climax in the Scottish Highlands it is a movie that is action packed and fast paced that  doesn’t let you catch your breathe.

As well as high octane action and larger than life characters the movie is also strikingly beautiful as Mendes uses iconic and bold images of London, Istanbul, Shanghai and the Scottish Highlands to really help bring this movie alive

Skyfall is a movie that gets this franchise back on track as Mendes has delivered a film that is a fantastic addition to the franchise.

It stays respectful to the movies that have gone before it but takes the character and the franchise into new and exciting territory.
If future Bond movies are going to be as good as this then lets hope we don’t have to wait another four years to see it.

Skyfall is out now

FemaleFirst Helen Earnshaw

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