Skyfall" Justifies All that Came Before with Daniel Craig
""Skyfall" was a huge success. It made a billion dollars, had a wonderful theme song by Adele, and established Daniel Craig as a major figure in the James Bond universe. Generally, audience members liked the story, though it began with another "You Only Live Twice" kind of opening with intimations of death and destruction.
"Skyfall" really established Daniel Craig in the role of James Bond. The abrupt about-face of the James Bond franchise when Daniel Craig came on board had startled a lot of fans. Many did not take kindly to this preening usurper, pretending to be some kind of superhero as the iconic Ian Fleming super-spy. Craig's first two films did well financially, but it was clear that he had not won over the general moviegoing audience. All that changed with "Skyfall," which portrayed Craig as a Bond who was hurt but kept on coming. "Skyfall" resulted in the immediate order two more James Bond films with Daniel Craig in the lead role, though those plans were subject to change as they always are in the James Bond universe.
The transition from the early days of the James Bond universe, when the emphasis was on the Bond Girls and Bond's savoir faire, to a purely action hero is complete. This is a man's business, the posters seem to be saying, and it is best left to men. Only a few of the posters even included women. The strategy worked brilliantly, and Daniel Craig finally won over the hearts of fans around the world.
The strategy of Craig portraying Bond as a heroic loner worked so well, in fact, that there was talk that "Skyfall" might even pick up a few awards from the Academy. The issue, at least as the people associated with "Skyfall" put it, was whether it was right to exclude commercially successful films like "Skyfall" from award consideration. In the event, the more optimistic projections failed to come true, but the Academy gave the film the sop of a statue for "Best Original Song" for Adele's theme. One has to admit that "Skyfall" was a high point in the James Bond universe, and you know what happens after one of those - but we'll get to that another time.