Skyfall

[12a]

United States 2012, 143 mins
Director: Sam Mendes
Starring: Daniel Craig, Javier Bardem, Judi Dench, Ralph Fiennes

Although director Sam Mendes is fresh to the franchise, several key players are back on board for the latest in post-Fleming Bondmanship.

Daniel Craig again reprises the spy's taut if dignified ruthlessness, apparently returning from the dead to face a new and satisfyingly evil villain: Raoul Silva, played by Javier Bardem with the cool menace he exhibited so effectively in NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN.

Silva's murky connections with M (Judi Dench, equally imperturbable) prompt lashings of spectacular mayhem that will delight 007 die-hards.

But alongside seasoned Bond screenwriters Robert Wade and Neal Purvis (QUANTUM OF SOLACE, CASINO ROYALE), newcomer John Logan (THE LAST SAMURAI, CORIOLANUS) and director Mendes have added depth to both characterisation and plot well beyond the usual wham-bam licence, lethal or otherwise.

The action is further enhanced by major talents such as Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris and Albert Finney in what promises to be another unequalled cinematic event this autumn.

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