Vatican paper's Bond review doesn't stir
Catholic church mouthpiece devotes five articles to 007 film Skyfall, praising 'beautiful Bond girls' and 'essential vodka martinis'
He is known for the violent retribution he administers to his enemies, thinking nothing of shooting, stabbing or electrocuting them as he hands out justice on behalf of Queen and country, before uttering a dry quip over their corpses. So you might imagine that James Bond's approach to forgiveness does not have much in common with the Catholic Church.
But the Vatican's daily newspaper has overlooked such niceties and given delirious coverage to Skyfall, the latest Bond film, claiming it shows a new, introspective side of the British agent while thankfully cramming in the usual dose of exotic locations and "extremely beautiful Bond girls".
L'Osservatore Romano has tried recently to move with the times, praising cult films such as the Blues Brothers, lauding Bob Dylan and publishing a women's supplement since the editor, Gian Maria Vian, was told by the pope in 2007 to liven up the 151-year-old daily.
But its Skyfall review takes things to new limits for the newspaper, which ran it in Wednesday's edition alongside coverage of the 500th anniversary of the Sistine Chapel, the appointment of new bishops in Peru and the Philipines, and the welcome news that catholic numbers are rising in Ireland.
"To celebrate 50 years of the world's most famous secret agent – which even the Queen paid homage to at the Olympics – we needed a film that rose to the occasion," said the paper in its review, one of five articles that it devoted to Bond.
"Skyfall does not disappoint. The 23rd Bond film is one of the best in the longest cinematic story of all time," it states, adding the film "does not lack any of the classic ingredients which have made James Bond a legend – the title credits song, adrenalin pumping action, amazing hyper-realistic chases, exotic locations, extremely beautiful Bond girls, the usual super villain and the essential vodka martini."
For the bishops, priests and cardinals itching to catch Skyfall, the paper gives a breathless breakdown of the plot, admiring the generational clash that "is the key to the film".
Daniel Craig, who claimed in Casino Royale that he preferred having sex with married women, is deemed to be "ever more convincing", in his latest appearance, while Judy Dench is "perfect" as M.
Javier Bardem, is described as "terrific" in Skyfall, "up there with Goldfinger, Dr No and Rosa Klebb", although no mention is given to the homoerotic feel he gives his character.
Bond himself is less clichéd, "less attracted to the pleasures of life, darker and more introspective, less invulnerable physically and psychologically and because of this more human, even able to be moved and to cry – in a word, more real."
Summing up, the paper declares: "Nothing will ever be the same again on the big screen for James Bond."
A background piece on Ian Fleming follows, with L'Osservatore Romano's massive coverage wrapping up with a focus on Bond soundtracks, heaping praise on Monty Norman's Bond theme.
And in a eulogy eloquent enough to make any priest sob into his bible, it praises the "Two minutes of music played during the legendary gun-barrel sequence which evokes a world of impeccable dinner jackets, cocktails, casinos, luxury villas, femme fatales and powerful cars."
- James Bond
- Newspapers & magazines
guardian.co.uk © 2012 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds
Other Movie news stories