Plot: What’s it about?
James Bond (Daniel Craig) has just endured a brutal chain of events, but he has captured the man who killed the woman he loved, now taking him to be interrogated. As it turns out, the man is involved in a secret organization known as Quantum, which Bond is dispatched to look into. He soon crosses paths with the beautiful Camille (Olga Kurylenko), who wants to avenge the death of her own loved one. Her vengeance is aimed at corporate businessman Dominic Greene (Mathieu Amalric). Greene happens to be part of Quantum and as Bond soon learns, has a vicious plot to grab immense power. As he works alongside Camille, Bond also has to uncover the complex truth about Quantum and cope with his own emotions. Faced with such intense circumstances, can even Bond survive this ordeal?
Bond is back and this time, he’s even in a true sequel. The 007 series has numerous installments, but the films have been mostly self contained in nature. Quantum of Solace is a genuine sequel, picking up right where Casino Royale left off, so make sure you’ve seen that one beforehand. I admit, I don’t like the choice of Daniel Craig as Bond and while Casino Royale had its moments, it didn’t rank as one of my favorite Bond flicks. Quantum of Solace does little to change my mind about Craig, while also making me wonder if it might be time for 007 to retire. The film tries too hard to break out of the Bond conventions, which leaves us with a spy thriller, but not really a signature 007 adventure. The plot is complex and poorly executed, but the action looks and sounds good, thanks to ample production values. In the end however, Quantum of Solace just doesn’t feel like a Bond movie and even as a spy thriller, it fails to stand out from the pack.
Video: How does it look?
Quantum of Solace is presented in 2.40:1 anamorphic widescreen. This isn’t quite the reference level transfer I expected, but it comes close. The film’s visuals are harsh, so grain is here, but that is intentional. Despite the grain and tweaked contrast, the image shows off some more than solid depth. Not always eye popping stuff, but some scenes look excellent and the entire movie has great overall detail. As I said, contrast has been fiddled with a little, but looks just as intended, while colors are a good representation of the theatrical presentation. In short, this looks superb.
Audio: How does it sound?
This DTS HD 5.1 option is excellent, a great choice for a reference disc, even. The soundtrack is bombastic from credits to credits, with no real slowdown. The movie’s aggressive audio is well handled here, as the surrounds are loud and dynamic, in powerful fashion. The action scenes light up the speakers, which is great news, since Quantum of Solace is more action than anything else. I was thrilled with this soundtrack, a prime example of how a popcorn action soundtrack should be done. No issues with music or the dialogue, it all sounds great here. This disc also includes Spanish, French, and Portuguese language tracks, as well as subtitles in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Cantonese, Korean, and Mandarin.
Supplements: What are the extras?
This is a disappointment. A slew of brief, promotional featurettes, a music video, and two of the film’s trailers is all we have on deck here. I have to assume a Special Edition is in the works.