Movie #137 2021: Quantum of Solace (2008)

Remember when I watched Casino Royale? Don’t worry, neither do I. And it’s probably because I watched it last June. It was the only Bond movie I’d seen before this one, and the fact that it took me so long to watch another one suggests that I wasn’t all that impressed with it. I mean, it was fine, but I don’t really get the hype.

Nevertheless, I will persevere, because what kind of movie critic would I even be if I’d not seen one of the most iconic, well-known franchises of all time? My issue with Quantum of Solace is, when it comes to writing a synopsis, I can’t recall anything that happened within the movie. That tells you everything you need to know, really. In fact, when you look up the synopsis on IMDb or Letterboxd, the descriptions of the movie are very wishy washy even on those highly prestigious movie media sites. So let’s just assume there’s some guns and a villain and… you know, your average James Bond movie action dick-swinging.

Watch Quantum of Solace | Prime Video

Presenter and critic Simon Mayo playfully calls this movie “Question of Sport” after the British sports quiz show, but you know what? I’d rather watch A Question of Sport. At least it makes sense and is moderately entertaining. 

Quantum of Solace flings the viewer straight into a hot steaming pile of nonsense so you have no idea what the tits is going on from the very first sentence. The plot is so flimsy and all over the place that you never really find your bearings, and even the action sequences are haphazard and generic. The truth is, they could have never made this and gone straight on to Skyfall and no one would be any the wiser. When I said the plot was forgettable, I really meant it.

The film’s score is typically good – unsurprising, as most Bond movies at least get that right – if not incredulously cheesy. To be honest, I’ve only mentioned it here because I wanted to find something positive to note, and even then it’s a pretty loose compliment. By that, I mean it was a good score, but it wasn’t great. It was, again, fine.

Though he’s by no means excellent, you have to give it to Daniel Craig because he does the best he can with this snooze of a film. Even though I’m not exactly sold on him playing 007 in the first place, even I can admit that he does well from an acting perspective. Gemma Arterton does well too, considering her character is written as a vapid sexual object with no real purpose. Perhaps most disappointingly, I read that Jeffrey Wright’s part was originally much larger, and he definitely deserved better than the fat lot of nothing he was given here. A waste of a promising supporting cast, without a shadow of a doubt. 

On the whole, it’s evidently clear that the faults of Quantum of Solace lie heavily with the poor writing. The plot is so thin that it’s rarely entertaining, and the script doesn’t make good use of the talent it has at its disposal. I’ll be surprised if I find another Bond movie more pointless than this one.

Best used as an alternative to a sleeping pill.

Quantum of Solace is available to rent on Amazon, Apple TV and the Google Play Store for £3.49 in the UK.

TQR Category Ratings:

Costume & Set Design: 
Overall Rating: ½


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