Quantum of Solace

Rated 3.0

There’s a lot to like here. Daniel Craig builds off the smoldering stoicism he introduced in Casino Royale. The grittiness and action sequences, too, continue the series’ reinvention, as does Judi Dench’s vulnerability as M. Plus, Olga Kurylenko and Gemma Arterton are two of the most breathtaking Bond girls in any of the 22. And yet … there are those internal contradictions. The script, again co-written by Paul Haggis, avoids the lull that hit the middle of Casino Royale, but the brisk pace that propels the film so energetically also makes for some head-scratching moments and implausibilities that are huge even by 007 standards. Some of that may be due to the editing, done in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it style that ups the adrenaline but also robs some chase and fight sequences of key bits of visual information. Some of that may also be due to the direction by Mark Forster (Monster’s Ball). It’s quite a leap to go from directing art-house films to the world’s biggest action franchise. Quibbles aside, Quantum offers 105 minutes of great entertainment. Feather River Cinemas, Paradise Cinema 7 and Tinseltown. Rated PG-13