STEVIE: SKYFALL

Posted by Stevie on 31/10/12

I’m an avid Bond fan, alway have been, always will be. With every new bond there’s an excitement and a fear beyond a child’s at Christmas.

I’m not blinkered in my adulation, I know there are better films and those that lack the panache that has made Bond the worlds longest/most succesful movie franchise ever. I surely know some Bond actors are better than others. Upon recent watching of older Bonds I find some of Roger Moores fashion choices more than dubious.

With the ‘new’ Bond films, they’ve been a far departure from any type of other bonds, brutal brilliant action films but for my money, missing some of the charm and Britishness that made me such a fan originally.

Many said Skyfall was the best ever, and I wondered whether it was sensationalised hype. After seeing it, it’s bloody brilliant. With all the brutality and incredible action scenes of recent films and the debonair charm and reemergence of classic Bond touches from earlier classics. Javier Bardem puts in an incredible turn as arguably the scariest, most psychotic unnerving Bond villain ever. Q makes a long awaited return in the form of the spry young Ben Whishaw who’s performance contains sharp nous and an authoritative air needed to run operations in MI6. The whole cast is stellar with Dame Judi Dench, as ever, in brilliant form, Albert Finney in a nearly show stealing cameo turn and Ralph Fiennes as the red tape waving Goverment official, Gavin Mallory. Even Moneypenny makes a comeback after quite the hiatus.

It’s easy to tell director Sam Mendes and his team are also fans of Bond films past and present for the re-introduction of all these quintessentially Bond trademarks, even Connerys Aston Martin DB5 makes an appearance.

The script is fantastic and razor sharp with wit, threats and sharp retorts prevalent throughout. Even the opening credits and theme song from Adele are a piece of art in themselves.

The thing that will effect most fans is the relationship between Bond and M, almost mother in the know and surly child, which will strike a chord with all family members and the fact that its London and MI6 that’s under siege. Bardem’s Silva is attacking Bond and Britain at its very heart, seeking to destroy M and MI6 on a personal vengeance mission, and thus making it personal to Bond.

It’s all those personal aspects that raise the stakes throughout the film, it’s not just a mission, it’s more. It’s deeper than Queen and country, especially when the Bond family home comes under siege in a climatic end to Bond 23.

Whether is the best Bond ever is hard to say but it’s certainly up there and it’s reignited my passion for Bond more than I thought is could. A perfect cocktail of action and heart, James Bond is back, shaken to its very best.

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STREET SQUAD: LOVEBOX 2012!

WE HIT LOVEBOX… HARD…

You can check out our expolits on Grazia Daily and see Harriet and Mimi on Vogue Online.

LOUIE: The other weekend the Street Squad and I set off to Lovebox with disposables in hand to snap stylish people for Vogue, Elle and Grazia… My Lovebox virginity was broken and it was one of the best weekends I’ve had in a long time!

Highlights: Grace Jones, Chaka Khan, Chic, dancing around on peoples shoulders

and Dalston Superstore + Vogue Fabrics after party’s on Sunday!

Downfalls: How I felt on Monday!

See you next year Lovebox.

SAMI: Expecting the worst weather wise, I turned up in dungarees and wellington boots, but I needn’t have! A glorious day, if a little windy, was had by all. Highlights included bopping around to Little Dragon, and Maverick Sabre on the main stage, as well as watching Mimi and Harriett’s pastel barnets whirl past on the giant carousel. 

Unfortunately I think the expectation of bad weather caused most attendees to opt for substance over style – but not for the streetsquad – we were lauding it up in our finest wares, from booty shorts to bindi’s and back again!

Roll on next year!

HARRIET: This year the English countryside has made a comeback: to London. Not only are we told that the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympics will feature 70 sheep, 12 Horses 10 chickens, 3 sheepdogs or “Green and Pleasant’ as described by the imagination and creator behind the ceremony Danny Boyle. This years Lovebox gave us a taster of what is to come in terms of scenery and setting for 2012, dubbed as “England’s Year”. On Saturday afternoon at Lovebox the street squad and TIGI Bed Head stormed through the 100,000 strong audience, armed with truant rainbow hair, silly-slash-courageous platformed Buffalos’s and disposable cameras.

The arena and backstage area mimicked that of a bohemian’s garden. Bushes trimmed in the most falic of shapes adorned the hilly lawn, 3 arches draped in lilac and pink flowers hung above you as you walked in. A “W.I” (Women’s Institute) tent with polystyrene “vegetables” were being heavily molestered by the drunken festival goers.

Music Muff Andy (street-squad’s musical connoisseur) glued me to a spot where i was persuaded to watch Little Dragon, her porcine nose and over energetic limbs really captured me.

That was me and mimi done for the day. We queued for hours for the 2 minute thrill of “Helter Skelter”, I nibbled on  a foot long. (Hot dog).  As the sun set and with the prospect of a full moon looming i disappeared into the night.

Lovebox was great, on par with Butlins (which is also great). Would i go again? Maybe Baby.

STEVIE: Lovebox on Saturday was terrific fun, filled with hipsters and muso’s alike, Victoria Park packed out to see a myriad of acts including Friendly Fires, Kelis, Little Dragon, Rita Ora and Emile Sande to name but a few and had some terrific highlights in smaller forms including the Sweet Toof graffitied car, and the african drummer in the smaller tents earlier in the day getting the atmosphere lifted to make way for a cracking day.

STEVIE: THE HIVE AT LET’S KEEP IT SHORT

After a recent venture to the brilliant new Hackney Picture house I headed up to the Attic for a new monthly film night, Let’s Keep It Short. The evening is hosted by actor Tom Geoffery who invites entrants to send in short films and music videos to be screened during the evening.

The opening nights bar was set very high with a varied array of films. Having a mixture means there is certainly something for everyone and you experience things you may not normally watch.

One of the stand out pieces for me was the extremely accomplished The Hive. Directed by Ed Lilly, it sets a dark atmospheric undertone, reminiscent of early Andrea Arnold or Shane Meadows and follows two brothers who go out to steal bee hives to supplement their impoverished existence. The suspense and tension Lilly manages to build throughout the 15 minute piece really puts the audience on the edge of their seat. Managing to fill a full story and rounded character backgrounds into such a short piece is testament to the script, shots and the talent of the actors who for me really stood out, particularly the lead, John Weaver as the rough but fragile Lewis

http://www.bbc.co.uk/filmnetwork/films/p00lkzs1

Another highlight from the night on a much lighter tone was the quirky Echo. Following the turbulent relationship between a young woman and her stuffed toy Dolphin, we see the pair in various date scenarios as blossoming young love until the wayward dolphins antics spiral to the ultimate betrayal and the young woman (portrayed by the comical genius of Lizzie Carter) exacting revenge.

A simple but hilarious concept all set to the soundtrack of Echo by Eskimo Joe.

http://vimeo.com/30800187

With so much creative talent in London’s young filmmakers, actors and all the behind the camera crews it’s always a delight to see new opportunities for them to showcase their work. Let’s Keep It Short will be on the last Sunday of every month and I for will be in attendance eager to see the latest offerings. That’s all for now… Stevie.