Skyfall: Bardem’s Silva Akin To Ledger’s Joker
If you haven’t seen Skyfall yet, you might want to catch up with the times. Agent 007 is 50 years old now (in movie years) and, according to some reviews, better than ever.
Yes, some reviewers are stating that Skyfall is the greatest James Bond ever. I’m not so sold, because I’m not a full James Bond 007 authority. I probably have not seen about 10 of the 23+ films. But I have seen each of the Bonds in action, even including one-off Bond George Lazenby.
Some Bond films are great. Some are over-the-top and campy. But of those that are greatest-of which I include Dr. No (Connery), Goldeneye (Brosnan), along with Daniel Craig’s Casino Royale and Skyfall. Casino Royale is one of my favorite all-time films. But Skyfall is potentially a better film for a more serious audience. I think it’s impossible to really decide for all-time which James Bond film is the best.
I must say that Skyfall does an extraordinary amount of things right. The least of which is certainly not Javier Bardem’s villian-Silva.
He’s so well-played. You are simultaneously creeped out by the murderer, yet you also feel his pain. He truly is a wounded person, seeking redemption in a way, and an end to his misery and his evil.
Mirrors: The Anti-Hero
Do you remember Heath Ledger’s Joker in The Dark Knight? I’m not saying Skyfall is as good as that film. But, in that film, the Joker is a mirror image of Batman. I would contend that they actually are nearly the same character. The singular difference between the two is how they respond to extreme loss.
One character, the Joker, responds to loss with destruction and trying to create chaos. Another responds with redemption, and trying to restore order. But beside that, they aren’t that different of characters.
I draw the same conclusion with Skyfall’s hero and anti-hero. SPOILERS AHEAD.
One James Bond is inadvertently killed by M’s order. The same goes for the villain Silva. Silva comes back from the dead and wants to destroy M. Bond comes back from the dead and is bitter, confused, and unsure of where her loyalties lie.
In the tensest of moments Bond looks at Silva and feels for the man. He senses his pain and agony. And sees that he can almost be him. The difference between the two I believe to be Bond is on mission. He has a greater vision. Silva’s vision became exacting vengeance on M. And it was his demise.