With Pierce Brosnan as 007 came a more slick and stylish spy. The first film (also his best) arrived with a strong script, gorgeous babes (especially Famkee Janssen is fantastic) and a great ensemble filled with fantastic action set-pieces. What ruined some of the film was over-use of cartoony Russian accents and bad comedy.
A shot in the arm the series was in desperate need of. It was as if they made a list of the best elements of all the James Bond films and checked every single one of them off when writing the screenplay. This definitely signals a change into cartoonier territory until Craig, but as it stands, the style and energy make this one of the franchise's best entries.
After the unintentional hilarity and blatant sexism of the previous few decades of Bond films, this came as an enjoyable and forward thinking surprise. I was impressed to see the misogynistic past of the film series finally addressed and criticized, with a female M and stronger than usual female characters. The action was also very engaging, and all around more fun than expected. Still, not that great on its own.
Brosnan made his debut as Bond with this action packed feature that began his tenure as the best Bond since Connery. Plotting is....well it is a Bond film. Izabella Scorupco is a memorable Bond girl but its Famke Janssen who stands out the most here as the orgasmic femme fatale villain Onatopp who takes carnal pleasure in killing. Production values are strong as is the opening sequence and song titles.
Brosnan does well, but he would unfortunately never be in another tolerable Bond movie. The seeds of what makes the Brosnan era as a whole so dismal are present in GoldenEye (Bond as more action hero than spy, etc.), but GoldenEye is still one of the better Bond movies. Not a great movie, but it's a fine action movie and a fine take on 007, especially compared to most of the other silly spectacle-focused Bond flicks.
Easily one of the best Bond films of all time. Pierce Brosnan nails it in his debut as 007, maintaining the cynical edge of Timothy Dalton but also injecting some of the wit and charm of Roger Moore. GoldenEye is also an impressive debut for director Martin Campbell, who would once again prove his knack for directing 007 in Casino Royale eleven years later.