Several people have commented on my analysis of
GoldenEye and the future of Bond, so much so, that I have
several pages of comments! I have interjected my own comments in italics.
The reason that I have posted these comments is to foster discussion,
among hardcore Bond fans, on the merits of GoldenEye.
If you would like to respond to my analysis, or to what anyone else has written
on these pages, please don't hesitate to contact me using the
Comments Form or email me at
And if you think some of us are wasting our time, don't bother going any
further; go read
1) Shawn Fuller, email@example.com,
In your review of the plot, you have problems with Natalya's move from the
Arctic Circle to St. Petersburg in one day. There are any number of plausible
explanations for this. If you're living on the Arctic Circle in Russia, St.
Petersburg would in fact be the closest city to you, due to the curvature of
the Earth. Getting to St. Petersburg would be more than possible within a 24
2) An anonymous female user from CompuServe
The bigger questions are 1) was Severnaya really in the Arctic Circle (as I
recall the map in the Goldeneye situation room, it appeared, rather, to be in
the middle of Siberia) and 2) what transportation would she be able to use to
get out of Severnaya given the "Goldeneye effect"? (The question of her being
without money is a moot one to me: we can't really say she had no money, nor
is it strictly necessary to have money in Russia to get transportation,
especially for a woman so obviously in distress as she would have been.)
Another interesting question is why the Ministry of Defense would be meeting
in St. Petersburg instead of Moscow.
After seeing the movie a second time, Shawn wrote again.
First, Severnaya is very definitely NOT in the Arctic Circle
at least, not according to the map in the Severnaya situation room.
Rather, it is in the dead middle of the country, apparently close to the
main East-West rail line that runs through Russia. Natalya could've
easily used the dog sled team she finds to make her way back to a rail
station, and from there get back to a major city. Moscow would
definitely appear to be the closer city, though. She might have chosen
St. Petersburg for any number of fairly logical reasons, unexamined in
the film. For instance, St. Petersburg is the more
"westernized/marketized" city. Given the unevenness of the
telecommunication industry in Russia, St. Petersburg may be a better
place from which to to hook into the Internet. Further, she could be
from St. Petersburg, and she is naturally therefore returning to a place
she knows after the horrifying events she has just experienced. Also,
she could well have made her way to the next town with an airport and
easily made it back to St. Petersburg in under 24 hours. In sum, then,
her arrival at St. Petersburg poses no big problems for me.
Your comments make sense. I read Gardner's novelization of GoldenEye
and he explains that Natalya has cash from her salary in Severnaya, which is
supposed to be in the Artic Circle. It is also now clear to me why she would
head out to St. Petersburg.
The more troubling aspects of St. Petersburg for me are 1) the Defense
Ministry's meeting there and 2) the ease with which Bond calls the tank into
operation. In the first place, it makes little sense to me that the entire
Defense staff of Russia would convene in St. Petersburg. How many times have
we seen the Chiefs of Staff meet in New York or Los Angeles instead of
Washington? Never, really. In the second place, Bond should never have been
able to use that tank. He was not on a base; those tanks were museum pieces.
Having lived in Eastern Europe I can tell you that you find this sort of
military hardware museum in most cities that were victims to World War II. My
problem with this scene, then, is a simple one: what the hell is a museum
piece doing with gas in it?
My understanding is that the tank is located in an Army depot. The chase scene
in the archives room shows that this is also a major military intelligence
archiving station. I assume that the tank they used in the film must have been
"vintage", in order for you to think that it was a museum piece?
Your comments about the scene in the Cuba
GoldenEye situation room are also baffling. When Bond is setting the mine and
then is confronted by the guards, he clearly slides his gun across to
them not a mine. I never saw a second mine, so I don't really understand
what your objection to the scene is. In fact, with the exception of the
mysterious gloves Bond is wearing on the motorcycle as he chases after the
plane in the teaser, I don't really agree with most of your so-called
"editing" problems. Maybe if I saw the film on videotape with the ability to
rewind and closely examine the scenes, I would be bothered by them. But on
the big screen, being caught up in the action of the moment, I don't think any
of these errors really detract from the overall effect of the film.
When Wade stops by Puerto Rico to see Bond, he hands him a package. Bond takes a
few items out of the package, including what appear to be two mines. Later, when
he is arming the mines in the facility, while guards are shooting around him, it
seems that Bond is arming the two mines. In addition, see my response to
Michael Farina's letter, #5
Individually, I don't have a problem with the mines, the gloves are any of the
other small errors it's just that as a whole they grow to be annoying! It
doesn't affect me so much that I don't like the movie, but in general, careless
mistakes like this show me that some people are not doing their job.
I disagree, too, with your analysis of some of the characters. Frankly, this is
one of the best-acted Bond films in a very, very long time. Natalya is an
entirely appealing and well-acted character. She is very much worthy of Bond.
At once vulnerable and resourceful, she is close to being as appealing as
Diana Rigg in OHMSS. Wade, too, deserves far more credit than you give him.
He's a clever foil for Bond, in some ways better than Felix as the CIA
counterpoint because he is so very different than Bond. And as for the pallor
of Janus/006, well, I think they could've written in slightly longer scenes
detailing the history of the Lien's Cossacks so that we could better
understand his angst. There's nothing really wrong with Bean's performance,
except that the very interesting Cossack story line is not perhaps adequately
explored. (Also, how the HELL did he escape from his predicament in the
teaser? I mean, talk about fantasy: How do you escape being shot point-blank
in the head on top of an explosion of a chemical factory?)
Funny, I found Natalya to be very shallow! I guess the problem is that after
seeing the film twice, I heard Izabella Scorupco in an interview and she came
off as flaky. I guess the impression stuck when I wrote my review. I'll just
have to see the film again to correct it!
As for Wade, I should have clarified more: I don't object to the character as
much as I object to Joe Don Baker back in the series again! It's just
As for Sean Bean, everyone is entitled to their opinion; Bean just doesn't do
much for me.
Finally, many people on the Net don't seem to understand:
006 and Ourumov were in cahoots from the very beginning!
006 was not shot be Ourumov; it was faked so that 006 could go
underground without raising suspicion. His face was ruined by the release of
checmical weapons from the timer that Bond set 3 mins. early.
YOUR ANALYSIS WAS TOO LONG AND DETAILED. YOU MUST HAVE SEEN THE
MOVIE TEN TIMES, WITH YOUR GOAL TO FIND EVERY MISTAKE YOU COULD. I'M SORRY
YOU COULDN'T RELAX AND ENJOY THE FILM.
I only saw it two times. And I'm sorry if I did not make it clear:
I VERY MUCH ENJOYED THE FILM.