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Overall Rating

Awesome: 13.19%
Worth A Look25.53%
Average: 20.43%
Pretty Bad: 20.43%
Total Crap: 20.43%

8 reviews, 187 user ratings

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Die Another Day
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by MP Bartley

"The One With All The Ice"
3 stars

Jimmy Bond has reached his 40th birthday this year, and in a neat coincidence it's also his 20th outing. It's hard to think of a such a strong franchise that still creates such interest and anticipation in it's 20th outing (although Halloween and Friday the 13th are trying damn hard). Largely, it's due to its unchanging formula of girls, gadgets, fast cars and sneering villains tied up with the obligatory opening sequence. Director Lee Tamahori wisely doesn't screw around with these requirements, but adds a little something else to the mix. The result is 'Die Another Day' which is both birthday celebration and a small step outside the boundaries.

Now we're not talking major re-invention here, James hasn't started batting for the other side or anything, but the start is certainly a jolt out of the expected Bond escapade.

Instead of the usual completition of his last mission which then launches him into his new globe trotting, in the pre-credits sequence by Madonna(as Comic Book Store Guy would say -"Worst. Song. Ever") Bond finds himself captured deep in Korea after going after villainous Colonel Moon and his right hand man, Zao (Rick Yune).

This capture follows through the title song and credits which details his torture and then fastforwards us a year to when Bond is still imprisoned.

It's certainly an attention grabber and an impressive way to kick off the latest in a franchise which is always in danger of laziness and falling into self-parody.

Things do return to normal however, when Bond unexpextedly finds himself free and thus sets out to find the traitor responsible for his capture. Tracking down Zao he finds himself in Cuba hooking up with CIA agent Jinx (Halle Berry), before finding a link to diamond miner and millionaire Gustav Graves (Toby Stephens).

The action then whisks itself off to Iceland where Bond and fellow MI6 agent Miranda Frost (Rosamund Pike) are witness to Graves' ice palace and satellite, Icarus.

So after an initially unsettling and intriguing start, 'Die Another Day' settles into what we expect of a Bond film, and fittingly for the series birthday, Tamahori and company dissapoint no-one. Brosnan further cements his status as the best cinematic Bond since Connery, with a smooth performance veering between professional killer and vengeance seeking loose cannon.
Pike is suitably glamourous as the girls, even though she and Berry have little to do but spout off lame putdowns and attempt to put some female sass into the film. It's a noble attempt, but in a Bond film a largely thankless one. Bond films are in a lose/lose situation with the females: if they attempt to be forward thinking they've still got to fall into bed at the drop of Bonds cravat, but no attempt to make them characters leaves them as mere scenery. Ah the fruitless life of a Bond girl...

Berry however continues to establish herself as the worst actress in the world. Her performance is a childish one - there's no line she can't oversell, no lame double entendre she can't spout like it's the funniest and sexiest thing in the world ever, no delivery more deadening.And her role as a CIA agent is completely undermined by her jumping into bed with Bond at the first opportunity.

However Dench makes up for this with her usual steely show as M, while Cleese picks up nicely as Q where the late, great Desmond Llwellyn left off. Samantha Bond is as bad as ever as you'd expect and it's a shame that MI6 is now a home of cosy familiarity instead of the hard edged workplace it used to be under Bernard Lee.

What perhaps sets 'Die Another Day' up with the best of Brosnans previous outings is the quality of villain he finds himself up against this time. Stephens gets the snooty, lip-curling intelligent villain spot on and snarls his lines with relish. Yune meanwhile has the more physical role, and is suitably brutish with a nice touch of having a diamond embedded face (why doesn't he have them removed? Because he wouldn't look half as cool as a villain obviously). It also helps that for once Bond is fighting villains younger than him, rather than battling geriatric pensioners like Jonathan Pryce's Elliot Carver (Tomorrow Never Dies).

Tamahori also has fun referencing the past Bonds throughout. From Berry's beach entrance stirring memories of Ursula Andress' 'Dr. No' entrance, to a tour of Q's laboratory that has some blasts from the past for Bond experts, it's a knowing wink to the series past for those in the know, and an unintrusive joke for those who aren't.

One thing that still sets Bond apart from everything else in the action genre is its reliance on good old fashioned stuntwork. It's a refreshing change to see a car chase over frozen lakes that hasn't been cut together in an epileptic fit, and from that to a swordfight in a Gentlemans club, through to a further pursuit in Graves' Ice Palace, the care and attention put into these sequences shines through.
It's a shame then that the few attempts at CGI are piss-poor. It hasn't been this badly done since the appearance of the Scorpion King in 'The Mummy Returns'. It's a further sign that Bond films should stick at what they know, and CGI isn't it. It's also further proof that this is half a great Bond film, and half an awful one. Conveniently, it's at about the half-way point, and it's also the point at which the CGI starts to overload the film.

Also, some of the dialogue and double entendres are cringe worthy, the first Bond/Jinx scene in particular. And it seems that the more Bond films we get, the further away we get from actual spying and further towards to outlandish gadgets that are just silly. An invisible car? Please. It's a shame that Bond becomes more and more reliant on gadgets to get him out of trouble rather than his skills and training.

Are there plot holes? Of course, but then we're talking about a series of films where the main villain managed to launch space shuttles from a hollowed out volcano in Japan and no-one noticed.

But no matter. While 'Die Another Day' is never going to be seen as classic Bond, it's more than enough to slap down pretenders to the throne like 'xXx'. While it's unlikely that Bond films will ever be seen as the defining action films they once were, but essentially they're like having sex with your ex. It's comfortable, reassuring, reliable and as long as no-one expects anything more from it, everyone should go home satisfied.

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originally posted: 11/22/02 00:44:36
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User Comments

11/11/19 Karen S after 14 months in NK, Bond would've been as thin as a rail or comatose or dead 1 stars
2/13/17 morris campbell good bond action halle is hot 4 stars
10/10/14 David M. Lighten up, people. This film had everything. camp and true drama 5 stars
11/18/12 Nadeem Ahmad It was among the worst of films about Bond, if the the worst. Halle Berry was too rash. 1 stars
8/27/12 Eyeam a Samurai Silly like all JB but joyless, series strengths like music/stunts/humour all fail here 1 stars
7/03/10 Drew Pickles Fun movie,worth a look. Cool story and very cool two faced bad guys. 4 stars
8/30/09 Jeff Wilder Stylistically too close to Michael Bay territory. 2 stars
12/26/08 Ed Teague I liked this better when it was Diamonds Are Forever 2 stars
11/10/08 Mark Gibson No great, it tried to mess with your opinian of bond but ended up failing. bad cgi too 2 stars
11/09/08 The Dork Knight scene-stealing bad guys save this unholy mess 2 stars
11/03/08 Shaun Wallner Intense Action! 4 stars
7/30/08 chris f the worst bond movie ever made 1 stars
5/18/08 Joe I like 5 stars
9/01/07 johnnyfog Sickeningly excessive and ridiculous. But I liked the cool villain. 3 stars
6/14/07 David Graham Forgive the CGI & you have a decent enough bond film & Brosnan at his final best. 4 stars
5/08/07 JM Synth Overblown to an extreme degree, but more fun than previous Brosnan Bonds 3 stars
4/20/07 bbl Worst Bond film ever, made worse by Halle Barry. My god she is an awful actress. 1 stars
4/19/07 Stevo UK Brosnan is a complete Puff. They should give him a velvet shirt and pom-poms. 2 stars
3/03/07 Joe Morris A lot of fun, what more do you want? 4 stars
2/16/07 Vip Ebriega Live to Die Another Day, and to watch this terrific 007 movie. 4 stars
2/16/07 johnnyfog I liked the villain, he was cool. Othewise, total bullshit 2 stars
2/08/07 Andre urbani i cant beleive i payed to watch this - utter shit 1 stars
2/08/07 Matt Not the best, but perfectly acceptable 21st century version of 007. 4 stars
2/02/07 laboo whoever said this sucks is a dirtbag 5 stars
12/15/06 BrianDePalma Cinematic equivalent of toxic waste 1 stars
12/12/06 The Deadly Assasin Owes more to Marvel Comics than Ian Fleming...the new "Casino Royale" is a Godsend !!! 3 stars
11/07/06 William Goss A lot of fun, which is not to say that I wouldn't mind a grittier, back-to-basics Bond. 4 stars
11/04/06 Tony Myers Halle Berry drags this one into the toilet. The theme song blows, too. 1 stars
8/19/06 Beau My Favourite bond movie, on-going action that keeps you entertained until the end! 4 stars
7/18/06 inty crazy bond flick 4 stars
7/12/06 Anthony Feor It's not the best Bond, but it's worth a look 4 stars
6/20/06 Zachary Worland Its exellent 5 stars
6/06/06 paula da best 5 stars
5/03/06 mamoosh Great fun and the new bond is a doosh 4 stars
4/18/06 P toya I liked the sword fight. Early Connery still untouchable 3 stars
4/07/06 R.W.Welch Another futile attempt to revive an exhausted franchise. 3 stars
4/02/06 poo Its good 5 stars
3/13/06 date movie sucks great 4 stars
2/11/06 Mack THE GOOD ONE 4 stars
2/06/06 Craig Not a bad Bond 4 stars
1/03/06 Anthony Feor Could be one of the best James Bond movies ever! 4 stars
11/21/05 chris not the best bond movie ive seen 3 stars
10/18/05 tony A GREAT ONE! 4 stars
10/13/05 Wisamane Sad ending with brosman, i heard The next actor will be a blonde LOL!! 1 stars
10/02/05 BONDIE THE BEST! 4 stars
9/11/05 matt just painful 1 stars
9/09/05 R.W. Welch More evidence that this property has been mined out. 2 stars
9/01/05 ES The beginning started out great with 007 as captured spy gone renegade, but goes bad quick 2 stars
8/26/05 Ca-Dizzle I was expecting good things after the previous 3 bond movies but this just sucks 2 stars
8/26/05 Eden Incredibly stupid, shallow mess. Will make u physically ill 1 stars
8/22/05 John Bale After 40 years 007 keeps marching on. Predictable but fun. 4 stars
7/20/05 Chris Horrible Bond movie 1 stars
5/27/05 tony Brosnans last. Thats why it was so good. Dispite the scenes of action. a very good film 5 stars
2/06/05 Tom Benton It just doesn't feel like James Bond anymore ... Brosnan saves the movie ... 3 stars
1/08/05 keithers.. A decent Bond film....baaad ending 3 stars
12/18/04 Matt F. Absolutely the worst Bond ever, even worse than Moonraker 1 stars
11/05/04 kyle sopper dopper 5 stars
9/22/04 Shinealight Shit as Bond 1 stars
8/18/04 Destroy This Movie Worst Bond Movie Ever 2 stars
7/30/04 nagendra not enough 3 stars
5/31/04 Nobody Wasn't as good as others, North Koreans do make good villains though 3 stars
5/25/04 C Vega probably the worst bond movie as the franchise has become too commercial as this film shows 2 stars
5/08/04 Littlepurch Well I liked it but even that didn't stop me realising that this is just NOT a good film! 3 stars
4/24/04 ranger4e not the best Bond movie 3 stars
4/20/04 tatum Ballsy attempt to be different 4 stars
4/19/04 JoJo As far as Bond goes, it's bad. As far as movies go, it's bad. 2 stars
4/07/04 Sig GOD! Why cant they make "Agent Under Fire" and/or "Everything or Nothing" into films?!!!!!! 2 stars
4/03/04 Silvey Grover If you like Bond you'll love it, if you don't you won't 4 stars
3/09/04 Mr_Blue Finally AGAIN a good Bond Movie, has been a while 4 stars
3/02/04 Margie Too much innuendo, not enough wit. John Cleese is funny; I'm glad he's R and not another Q. 2 stars
2/04/04 Chris I not a Bond fan but this one was very enjoyable and fun. See it. 4 stars
1/02/04 Claudia Halle takes advantage of her attractiveness, by getting easy acting jobs like playing a ho. 1 stars
12/05/03 Ray I didnt like it 2 stars
11/29/03 john "No Mr Bond I expect you to die", said Goldfinger-he gets his wish-the series is dead 1 stars
11/21/03 rony this time i only watched it for HALLE BERRY!!! you go gurl. im rating awesome for berry 5 stars
8/02/03 Stefan Halka Finally a good film from Pierce Brosnan. Halle looks like a dike with her hair that short. 4 stars
7/26/03 nr GREAT I LOVED IT 5 stars
7/06/03 Paul S. Good bits: Miranda, sword fight, cat fight (although I wanted Jinx to lose), torture seq. 4 stars
6/30/03 James Awful - relying on computer graphics way too much...could not get more far-fetched. 2 stars
6/26/03 cochese I will reitterate what others have said already-Halle Berry is NOT attractive, fuckable yes 2 stars
6/21/03 robsv "Madonna has a speaking part" = "SUCKS" 1 stars
6/14/03 Jacob I agree, Halle is ugly like hell. She should had been the baddie instead. 3 stars
6/12/03 David Who writes this tripe? Please! Looks like they've piched from Austin Powers( nice "Laser") 1 stars
6/07/03 jocke i think it is very good 5 stars
6/05/03 J.J Okay movie. Halle Berry is the ugliest bond girl ever. 3 stars
5/18/03 djacosta Worst than a cheap video game 1 stars
5/18/03 djacosta Can I give it less than one star? 1 stars
5/03/03 Fishchicken It's only a movie 4 stars
4/04/03 Marcia Lartz Best Bond in a while. Plot driven, so don't expect acting to be the star. 5 stars
3/17/03 Peter Worth looking at cause it's a Bond movie. Other than that, too much BS(invisible cars?) 3 stars
3/14/03 What?! halle berry should had been the dead bad girl instead. 2 stars
3/08/03 Ayo Odumuye this movie was horrible!!! 1 stars
2/24/03 oo7 minus 6 good fun. - what would you prefer, xxx ??? ( triple 'gay' is more like it !) 4 stars
2/18/03 Fosse Halle Berry sucks, Rosamund Pike out-shadows her 2 stars
2/06/03 Pako you should all fucking die................BOND IS THE MAN 5 stars
2/06/03 123 Bond,bond,bond, dont you think you have enough of him?!?!? 3 stars
1/26/03 Connoisseur best Bond since GoldenEye 4 stars
1/22/03 Alex Flynn I went to the bathroom during Maddona's opening song. I just couldn't stand to listen to it 1 stars
1/22/03 Angolmois Laughable, more shallow than normal, and the special effects suck. 1 stars
1/16/03 Petros The women took over the movie - get a grip Bond! 3 stars
1/14/03 Christa Boring as hell. 1 stars
1/11/03 Butterbean Was too fucking long. 3 stars
1/09/03 TIMMAY! What The Hell is wrong with all u pricks that say it sux?? This movie fuking rools!!! 5 stars
1/06/03 blah Halle Berry is the worst bond chick ever! 3 stars
1/03/03 . Unbeleivable how ppl underrate it, this one rules again! 5 stars
1/01/03 The Collector WORST EPISODE EVER 1 stars
1/01/03 Shardul Die Another day sucks ! 1 stars
12/31/02 Brooks Sad attempt to focus on juvenile audience. 007 deserves better 2 stars
12/28/02 Matt and Rob James Bond is gay 1 stars
12/27/02 Stryper Rocks Impossible scenarios, but entertaining....Halle Berry kicked some butt, give her an Oscar 4 stars
12/27/02 Markus Another example how computer graphics is abused for totally stupid scenes. 2 stars
12/24/02 Tim I think they may have run out of ideas. 2 stars
12/23/02 Da Kenwa I gave up after 20 mins and snook into the 2 towers instead :D 2 stars
12/23/02 Jake Halle Berry ruined the movie, she's hideous and untalented. 1 stars
12/22/02 malcolm pretty much the same old Bond formula, w/a couple of nifty twists 3 stars
12/21/02 Tiffany I absolutely hated it. 1 stars
12/21/02 Scaramanga Halle Berry sucks 3 stars
12/19/02 Uncle Salty Maybe next time we don't need a new film, rehash old scenes, plots, girls, & villans AGAIN! 1 stars
12/19/02 Melina follows the bond formula, girls+outrageous action+wierd bad guys+girls 3 stars
12/17/02 CDWangs Miranda Frost (Rosamund Pike) is the hottest bond girl ever! 4 stars
12/16/02 Slayer It was shite the old bond films will always be the best 1 stars
12/15/02 viking Not bad, but this one owes more to Marvel Comics then Ian Fleming 4 stars
12/15/02 spacecowboy-00x I'm a die hard fan of the Bond...and this is the stuff! :D 5 stars
12/14/02 Matthew Smith exhilarating from start to finish 4 stars
12/13/02 Mark Milotay It Makes O.H.M.S.S. look good 1 stars
12/13/02 Lord of the Flames Oh dear, bring back Timothy Dalton, no serisouly, please! This was cack all over, 3rd worst 2 stars
12/13/02 cpbjr how about a decent Bond movie for a change? 3 stars
12/13/02 Nigel Smallfawcett Bless the Broccolis, but this one is barely, just barely above "A View To A Kill"... 1 stars
12/12/02 Kent Walker Best Bond Movie to date. I loved the plot twists 5 stars
12/12/02 chris this is so so so sad!!! 1 stars
12/11/02 mark This Bond Movie is average 3 stars
12/11/02 Vince CGI + Bond = what the fuck is this bullshit? 2 stars
12/10/02 Mr Fester "Do you expect me to act?" "No, Madonna, I expect you to suck." 3 stars
12/10/02 Andrew Kang To Erik: NORTH Korea tortures Bond, not SOUTH Korea. Your writing is very misogynistic. 3 stars
12/10/02 ^ZuLu^ Just a simple action flick named 007. Nobody beats Connery as Bond. But the car's cool! 3 stars
12/08/02 Michael Flynn The best Bond since "Goldeneye", it ranks up with "Goldfinger" and "Live and Let Die" 5 stars
12/06/02 Film Afficianado Worst, recycled Bond ever. Awful FX. Not really a Bond flick either. 1 stars
12/06/02 Interrog8 It was good, but completely implausible, which kept it from being great. 4 stars
12/06/02 Just a fan don't like it, don't watch it... morons.... 4 stars
12/04/02 Fonq35 At least it wasn't xXx 3 stars
12/04/02 Beotch Pretty bad 2 stars
12/04/02 Christyman Jinx slaps Bond on the ass in this version (metaphorically). And there's chemistry there. 4 stars
12/04/02 Nate This sucks ass, the worst bond ever 1 stars
12/04/02 White Bread Finally a good Bond picture. It's been a while. 4 stars
12/03/02 OnGeboren It's just a james bond movie! Action! 4 stars
12/03/02 gyro_44 Lots of fun; hints of Connery-era Bond too, which is great 4 stars
12/03/02 Dustin Worst Bond Ever. I had a nag list a mile long after watching this POS recycled crap. 2 stars
12/03/02 Tamala It was not unbearable but...I didn't really like it. 2 stars
12/02/02 Mister Char i liked it, lots of allusions to previous bond films, and lots of fun 5 stars
12/02/02 dread Modern Bond = Hollow Bond, Connery Bond = Classy Bond 2 stars
12/02/02 grovel Starting a helicopter in midair is as impossible and originial as making a car invisible. 2 stars
11/29/02 Smiff Disappointing (compare GoldenEye), but good crowd pleaser. (rushed?) 3 stars
11/29/02 Uncle Salty Prepackaged, Oversold, Recycled, Overdone, Explosions, Ads... James Bond IS dead. 1 stars
11/28/02 Princess Diana With those dumb-ass questions, you probably didn't even "get" the movie. 4 stars
11/28/02 KG Pretty OK. Berry pimps Brosnan. Deal with it white boys! 4 stars
11/27/02 Erik Blows Cock Cant take a review seriously when the reviwer is so ignorant,pick up a dictionary you moron 4 stars
11/27/02 Jeff so much corny jokes and bad scripting, so little plot and good animation 1 stars
11/27/02 badgersarseUK A bit long and very far fetched but it's a bond film and it delivers what we expect. 4 stars
11/27/02 djacosta It hurts my intelligence 1 stars
11/26/02 spaceworm Most exciting new Bond film since Live and Let Die (I was thirteen) 5 stars
11/26/02 A note on spelling "Laser" is an acronym and always spelled with "s." In "demilitarise," "s" is UK, "z" is US. 4 stars
11/26/02 Flounder Smelled worse than Joe Starks body odor! 1 stars
11/26/02 Str8Dog big explosions, big boobs and big lack of plot. 4 stars
11/26/02 Bulldog You ask a lot of dumb questions that can be answered by paying better attention.. 4 stars
11/26/02 "Yes the shit." Something for everyone and one hell of a body count. 4 stars
11/26/02 Stephen Lodge 007 Good, not great. Special effects are crap! 4 stars
11/26/02 Butterbean Like a game, you expect the formula, but you are dying to see the details 4 stars
11/25/02 sean gothman typical bond 4 stars
11/25/02 bullit17 Improbable ... impossible ... classic Bond. 4 stars
11/25/02 SS Thoroughly enjoyed the movie. Beats XXX hands down. 5 stars
11/24/02 ajay ug.. I'm so sick of the same shitty Bond movies. Evil guy + "lazer" = redundent nonsense. 1 stars
11/24/02 Yuri The best one yet 5 stars
11/24/02 asdf The opening sequence takes place in NOrth Korea, not the South. Please, do some reasearch. 4 stars
11/24/02 FrayLo Don't think too hard about action movies, you'll get a headache. Just enjoy it... 5 stars
11/24/02 Adam best Pierce Brosnan 5 stars
11/24/02 noisey30 Opening song was cool. All around great. 5 stars
11/24/02 Rambin Wreck What a great Bond movie! I had a blast. 5 stars
11/23/02 asina A guilty pleasure, like all Bond films. I fucking LOVED it! 5 stars
11/23/02 Jiz Berry can't act, Madonna's theme song blew cock. Other than that, cool movie. 4 stars
11/23/02 Crunchyfrog Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation (laser, dumbass) 5 stars
11/23/02 Jarrod_101 Pushed the limits of how far fetched a bond flick can be, still good though. 4 stars
11/23/02 nick2k i liked it. i hate the new thunderbirds though. 5 stars
11/23/02 Croweater You ignornat fucking idiot Eric! Not all spelling is americani'z'ed! Look in the dictionary 5 stars
11/22/02 Superdave Erik, you just don't get it do you? DAD is Brosnon's best (at least tied with Goldeneye) 5 stars
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  22-Nov-2002 (PG-13)



Directed by
  Lee Tamahori

Written by
  Neal Purvis
  Robert Wade

  Pierce Brosnan
  Halle Berry
  Rick Yune
  John Cleese
  Judi Dench
  Michael Madsen

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