November 11, 2021

THE CULTURE WARS ARE A ROUT:

James Bond, Christian Knight (Graham Mcaleer, 11/05/21, Law & Liberty)

During the Enlightenment, David Hume sought to replace the ideal of the Christian knight with that of the gallant. He was sure that a military with baggage trains stocked with champagne would prevail against enemies with less refined tastes. Rustic soldiers, minds stuffed with superstitions, should be supplanted by the scientific soldier, the officer and gentleman. Ambassadors of the refinement of the arts and sciences, a new model army would deliver a revolution in military affairs to the battlefield. For the first sixty years of his film life, Hume's fellow Scot, James Bond was the definition of the gallant. With suavity to disarm the ladies and the latest refinements in weapons and spy trickery to dispatch enemies, Bond was the lethal edge of the Enlightenment. In No Time to Die, the Christian knight makes a comeback.

The cars, the tuxedo, and the Omega are all still there, but the whole is an exposition of John 15:13: Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

The change had been coming. Skyfall, the most poignant and best of the Daniel Craig films, dwelt on mothers. After decades away, Bond returns to his rustic Scottish country estate. There, he visits the grave of his father and mother, Andrew and Monique Delacroix Bond. Orphaned as a young boy, the plot twist of Skyfall is the rivalry between Bond and former MI6 agent Raoul Silva for the attention of M (played by Dame Judi Dench). Silva feels betrayed by his "Mummy" M, who abandoned him when captured, leaving him no choice but cyanide. The capsule failed, save to eat away half of Silva's face. In Skyfall--the title of the film is the name of Bond's family estate--Silva is out to get "Mummy" and finally gets his chance. Bond is also estranged from M, but reconciled, she dies in Bond's arms, a reverse Pietà.

The One Story.

Posted by at November 11, 2021 12:00 AM

  

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