Blu-ray Review "Skyfall"

skyfallActors: Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris
Directors: Sam Mendes
Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Studio: Fox/MGM
Release Date: February 12, 2013
Run Time: 143 minutes

Film: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3.5 out of 5 stars

I have to admit, I did not see “Skyfall” in the theaters.  In fact I am probably one of the very few that didn’t.  The 23rd Bond film has been critically acclaimed and grossed over $1 billion dollars worldwide at the box office making it the biggest hit of the franchise.  It also highlights the celebration of 007’s 50th anniversary. Does it deserve all this attention and success? You bet your ass it does! This film really delivers everything you could ask from a Bond film and I have to say Daniel Craig IS James Bond.  I know, I know Sean Connery is a legend but Craig has really taken over this role quite well.  Before I saw this myself, I heard that people were calling it the best Bond film to date and I thought that was hard to believe.  But I got to tell you…it is really it. Believe it or not, “Skyfall” is the best Bond film to date.  Of course the classics are classics and they will always hold a special place in my heart, this film really knocks you off your socks and delivers exactly what at James Bond film should be.  Highly recommended if you haven’t seen it already.

Official Premise: Daniel Craig is back as James Bond 007 in SKYFALL, the 23rd installment of the longest-running film franchise in history. In SKYFALL, Bond’s loyalty to M (Judi Dench) is tested as her past returns to haunt her. 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost. When Bond’s latest assignment goes gravely wrong and agents around the world are exposed, MI6 is attacked forcing M to relocate the agency. These events cause her authority and position to be challenged by Mallory (Ralph Fiennes), the new Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee. With MI6 now compromised from both inside and out, M is left with one ally she can trust: Bond. 007 takes to the shadows – aided only by field agent Eve (Naomie Harris) – following a trail to the mysterious Silva (Javier Bardem), whose lethal and hidden motives have yet to reveal themselves.

Fox/MGM has delivered a spectacular Blu-ray for this release with a nice combo pack:
Blu-ray/ DVD + Digital Copy and Ultraviolet. I see myself revisiting this quite often on Ultraviolet while on the go. The 1080p is one of the best I have seen in a while formatted with an 35MM aspect ratio of 2.40:1. Since the film was really in a 70MM IMAX-format, I would love to be able to see that version be released one day as well like “The Dark Knight” did on the Blu-ray.  Originally, I was hoping for a 7.1 surround track but that was not the case. But it doesn’t matter since the DTS-HD MA 5.1 track included will knock your socks off literally.  Whether it is the action or the car chases, they all sound amazing. Even right down to the dialogue and the subtle hints of the score. Really superb.

The special features are a nice but not stunning like the film itself.  It kicks off with two commentary tracks, with the first with director Sam Mendes. You can really tell that really loved working on this and he was involved with every aspect of this film. The next track is with the Producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson and Production Designer Dennis Gassner, not my favorite of the two for sure but some decent information is shared here. The real meat of the extras is “Shooting Bond” which is an hour of featurettes about the production. It can also be put together as one long featurette, which I preferred, instead of 14 individuals.  It cover everything from Bond himself to Q to villains and the action, of course. There is also some short footage from the Skyfall Premiere at the Royal Albert Hall.  Lastly there is a theatrical trailer and brief Soundtrack Promotional Spot rounding out the extras.

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