The 17th film about Ian Fleming's infamous super-spy, James Bond. This time, 007 (aptly played by Pierce Brosnan) is an operative in Russia (Arkhangelsk, in particular), after the Iron Curtain has fallen, trying to stop an evil scientist from his plan to use a secret satellite to destroy the human race.
Nine years earlier, Bond and his friend (and fellow agent) Alec Trevelyan (Sean Bean), aka 006, are on assignment in Russia, attempting to destroy a nerve gas factory, when 006 is killed. Although Bond manages to destroy the plant, he is forever haunted by the death of his colleague.
Time has passed—nine years, to be exact—and Bond soon finds himself embroiled in the usual stew of secrets, sex, and super-spys. In this episode, Bond is up against the incredibly sexy Xenia Onatopp (Famke Janssen), and his own friend, Alec, seemingly back from the dead, as they attempt to steal the arming device for the super-secret weapons satellite, Goldeneye. Bond, as always, must prevail in the face of ever-increasing odds.
Made after a six-year hiatus, GoldenEye was the first to star Pierce Brosnan as the suave secret agent. Brosnan had long been sought for the role, but lost the chance in 1986, when NBC forced him to continue filming their own television action-thriller hit, Remington Steele. When Timothy Dalton, star of the previous Bond flick, License to Kill (1986) decided to move on to other things, the movie execs knew just who they wanted—the debonair gentleman, Brosnan. They couldn't have made a better choice.
Brosnan is joined by two incredibly sexy women: Famke Janssen as the deliciously evil Xenia Onatopp (typically for a Bond woman, her character's surname is a double entendre; you may recognize her as Jean Grey in the X-Men movies), and relative newcomer Izabella Scorupco as Natalya Simonova - Bond's female counterpart. Alec is so well played by veteran Sean Bean, that you might find yourself rooting for the wrong side—he is every bit as good as Bond, but twice as bad, too...
The rest of the cast is just as impressive: Robbie Coltrane (recently playing Hagrid in the Harry Potter movies) turns in his usual sturdy performance, while returning standard Desmond Llewelyn gives the requisite dry martini-flavouring to his regular character, "Q." Comic relief is provided by Scottish character-actor Alan Cumming, as the Urkellian Boris Grishenko. And in an amazingly astute move, the studio has updated the super-spy's agency with the inclusion of a new female "M"—played to a "T" by the incomparable Judi Dench.
Though delayed for many years, this piece shows that Bond can and will survive under any circumstances. The action is fantastic, the characters well-etched, and even the exaggerated unbelievability is exactly up-to-par. (Combat on a satellite?!). If you haven't already seen this, make it the next stop at the video store. Definitely one of Bond's best.
IMDB - http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0113189/
Hollywood.com - http://www.hollywood.com/movies/detail/movie/179536
Movieweb.com - http://movieweb.com/movie/goldeneye/index.html