It feels like the forced sequel it is. It doesn’t really do anything entirely wrong per se, but nothing really stands out. The villain couldn’t have been more boring and really didn’t seem all that villainous. Things happen and then it ends. It’s wholly unremarkable and unengaging.
Though I’ve always felt the film flows a bit unevenly, it did such a service to the Bond franchise I can’t help but enjoy myself. It certainly doesn’t hurt that the opening Parkour chase in Madagascar is near perfect and incredibly entertaining. The poker sequences are a little dull, especially since the film was released during the height of America’s poker fad, and seem a bit juvenile to those fairly familiar with the game. Then the film keeps going. And then it keeps going again. But tons of great fights, chases, shootouts, and intrigue easily make up for its faults.
Using a wonderful and extensive theme of “old and new,” Skyfall gave you everything you could want in a Bond film. And yet, much of it didn’t feel like a Bond film. A delve into his past culminating in an epic final showdown were part of this departure, and also part of why it was so enthralling. Javier Bardem also greatly contributed to that. There is some lamentable Hollywood-style computer hacking, but Whishaw’s Q helps one look past it.
Though most have concluded that Tintin is an animated version of Spielberg’s own Indiana Jones, for me it felt more like a close mimicry of all the other Indiana Jones clones than the source itself. Most notably, the complicated yet flowing action scenes, where the landscape is literally falling apart, reminded me of the Uncharted video games. There was certainly enough adventure and wit to make the movie good, but not quite enough to make it notable.
They filled this movie with actors that I enjoy and they didn’t disappoint. Although the movie was filled with cliches, those cliches are usually not juxtaposed. Western tropes like coming to accept the Indians and quitting the gang for a woman were side by side with insectiod aliens with one squishy weakness and abduction for the purpose of studying weakness. It assembled those textbook archetypes into a wonderfully entertaining spectacle.