The World is Not Enough (1999)
Let the meltdown commence
Warning: this review does contain a few vague spoilers.
The nineteenth 007 movie, The World is Not Enough, stars Pierce Brosnan as 007, Sophie Marceau, Robert Carlyle and Denise Richards.
Throughout the past eighteen Bond films, there have been some fantastic films and a few barely enjoyable ones. But, compared to The World is Not Enough, even the worst of the earlier films look like shining stars. Yeah, this movie was just that bad!
It doesn't start off that way, though. The entire pre-title sequence was fantastic and entertaining. The action is intense, the story interesting, and toys amazing, and it set up the possibility of the most fearful villain yet. I guess somewhere, they forgot what they were doing.
Part of the problem stems from the first of two Bond girls of this film, Electra. She is the perfect example of someone we don't want to see Bond saving. Not only is she fabulously wealthy from her parents' hard work, not hers, she acts like she's better than everyone. Worse yet, she proves over and over that she's not a nice person. Essentially, she's the spoilt brat who expects everything to go her way.
This movie also plays with the very serious condition known as Stockholm Syndrome. Sure, having a mental condition in a movie is great for publicity... Unless they are used in the way The World is Not Enough does. It hurt so much that it made me want to head-butt a wall to ease the pain! Anyone who's knows of someone suffering from this condition must be appalled by the way they depict it in this film.
Then, when they finally reveal the villain who was apparently so scary at the beginning, I thought it was a joke. Robert Carlyle is a fantastic actor, but not even he could make the villain fearsome. I mean, the way he treated his lover, and his "horrible" plot, he actually felt like a good guy at times. Sure, he was willing to do something terrible, but his reasons made him appear romantic, not someone so feared that his minions would rather kill themselves than face his anger.
Then the 2nd Bond Girl (because one just isn't enough) was awful, too. Denise Richards did not fit the part of a nuclear scientist at all! Sure, she tried to put on a brave face and had a few lines that made her sound intelligent, but otherwise she came across as a cheerleader who didn't belong in the action. And for some ungodly reason, her dialogue felt more like an exposition rather than natural speech, as if the writers didn't believe the viewers would understand what was going on.
On top of it all, many of the gadgets that Bond uses are so foolish that I just wanted to scream "Yeah, right!" I know that most of his toys seem to exist just to get him out of a jam once in the movie, but these gadgets felt extremely forced. It's hard to believe that Q would have created them at all due to how limited their use would be. The only one that has the potential of large-scale use is the x-ray glasses, but they way they work felt so unrealistic that it feels like it was created just to move the plot along.
Okay, I think that is enough bashing for one day. The problem is, besides the introduction, I can't find much to praise in The World is Not Enough. Sure, it had plenty of action, which even feels poor compared to past films, but everything else just fell flat, or worse. Do yourself a favour and skip this movie! All the Christmas jokes in the world couldn't make this movie enjoyable.
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