Time for something a little more cerebral from the king of American cinema. I’ve always been of the opinion that Spielberg’s best films operate as cinematic theme park rides providing brilliant visceral thrills in an escalating fashion. Duel, Jaws, Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark/the Last Crusade and Jurassic Park all fit into this pattern and, with the exception of Duel, they are classics of the summer tentpole blockbuster genre. I’ve not watched much of his serious output so now seems as good a time as any. Munich is the story of the alleged vengeance killings carried out against the perpetrators of the 1972 Olympic massacre of 11 Israeli athletes. It’s made with a steady assured hand and the narrative is admirably neutral in terms of judging the events. I’d expected a Jewish bias of some kind but it isn’t there, this is a human story about the effects of violence on people and how it can be carried with you. Eric Bana is absolutely superb as I’ve come to expect as was Ciarán Hinds (previously brilliant in Hallam Foe) and their friendship lends the film a warmth which it would otherwise have lacked. Daniel Craig’s South African accent could have done with a bit of work though.
Here’s an alternative view from my good friend Tom Figures (Stifler on the comments board)…
“I found it lacking in shooty bits and the baddies didn’t have eye patches and scars and other distinctive ‘baddy’ features. So it made it dead hard to work out who was who.
And the goodies plan was a bit boring, trying to secure railway lines to all these European cities on the orders of “his rail”. We never even find out who the chap who owns the rail company is! This left me confused for much of the film. Bond did nothing whatsoever, he just sat in cars (which had no gadgets) being useless all the time.
Worst. Bond. Film. Ever.
5/5 stars, see it now!”