Skyfall review

It's a pleasure to report that Bond has got his mojo back.

After two deadly serious outings for Daniel Craig's 007 (one good, one bad), director Sam Mendes has brought some fun and tradition back to the venerable franchise.

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Thankfully unconnected plot-wise to 'Casino Royale' and 'Quantum of Solace', 'Skyfall' begins with a bumbled rescue attempt in Istanbul that leaves Bond missing-presumed dead.

It's not that easy to put down 007 of course, and he re-surfaces when MI6 headquarters is attacked by Javier Bardem's barmy blonde cyber-villain Roaul Silva.

Silva is camp as Christmas but utterly evil, and a magnetic Bardem segues between hilarious, terrifying and just daft. His homoerotic first meeting with Bond had the audience in uncomfortable stitches. In the finest traditions of Bond baddies, he also has a weird physical disability.

Speaking of tradition, with the franchise celebrating the 50th anniversary this year it's fun to see some familiar characters from the series return.

First is a very different Q - with Ben Whishaw playing Bond's gadget master as a stuffy manchild who's annoyingly good with computers. He's got no gadgets for Bond though; "we don't go for exploding pens anymore."

The biggest cheer of the night though was reserved for another returning icon, Bond's Aston Martin DB5 - it even has the same registration as the versions seen in 'Goldinger' and 'Thunderball'.

By dusting of the coolest car in movie history and giving it a small but vital role in the plot, Mendes helps bridge the Craig era to the classic Connery 'Bonds' we all love. The audience loved it.

It's just refreshing to have a laugh with Bond again. At one point he actually has a comedy fight with a goon in a pit full of komodo dragons, something unimaginable in the last two iterations. He also gets a few one liners.

The tone is so different to 'Quantum of Solace' that it almost feels like a reboot of the franchise, one that ironically has the confidence to celebrate all that is best about the a British icon.

It's also tightly plotted, action-packed and relentless, without an ounce of narrative flab on it.

We think 'Skyfall' is a future classic.