Quantum of Solace (QOS) is a rush. It's a rush in as many ways as the word can mean. The film begin in Italy along the sea in a tunnel. We see a busy tunnel of cars and suddenly action breaks out and we're right in the middle of a hectic car chase.
Even since The Bourne Ultimatum set a standard for action films with its limited use of a Steady-Cam, action scenes have been shaky, tense and gripping. Yet sometimes the scenes are too shaky and the audience loses sense of what's happening. This is the case with the QOS opening sequence. When the scene ends and the opening credits roll, we've barely had a chance to find out who is chasing Bond and why.
QOS picks up immediately after Casino Royale. Bond is still pretending he doesn't care about Vesper and her betrayal, but it's clear he's on a path for revenge. The movie doesn't waste anytime jumping between locations and quickly introducing new characters which can be a bit overwhelming. One of the endearing characteristics of Bond films is that there's a suspension of disbelief about how Bond gets everywhere and how quickly he does it. QOS doesn't disappoint here.
The storyline feels familiar, but drives the plot enough to establish that Bond is determined to finish what he started. The supporting cast is good, but its strange to see Bond only hook up with one woman through the film! (Maybe he's learning…) The movie as a whole isn't as daring or spectacular as Casino Royale, but it concludes the two-part character development of this new James Bond. By the time the end credits roll, it's clear that Bond has learned some important lessons and feels like a more established spy – the one we've come to know and love over the past 50 years.
If Casino Royale and QOS are the opening chapters in the redevelopment of James Bond, then the rest of the story should be very exciting.