Friday, 11 January 2013

Skyfall is an Abridged Version of Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy

In 2012, Skyfall director Sam Mendes said in an interview with The Playlist that The Dark Knight directly influenced his vision of the latest entry in the Bond franchise:
“In terms of what [Nolan] achieved, specifically The Dark Knight, the second movie, what it achieved, which is something exceptional. It was a game changer for everybody [...] What Nolan proved was that you can make a huge movie that is thrilling and entertaining and has a lot to say about the world we live in, even if, in the case with The Dark Knight, it’s not even set in our world… That did help give me the confidence to take this movie in directions that, without The Dark Knight, might not have been possible.”
When I first read this, I thought: "Oh, cool. Those Dark Knight movies were pretty chill so it'll be neat to see what sort of things Mendes will use in his movie that are reminiscent of them."

I was not expecting that they would be the exact same movies.

Now, I liked Skyfall. Don't get me wrong there. I thought it was a really fun and exciting film, and was a welcome addition to the 007 series. I especially thought Javier Bardem's performance as Raoul Silva deserved more praise than it received. That being said, I couldn't help the feeling that the whole thing seemed a bit... plagiarized.

So let's go through it, shall we?

Oh, and um... obligatory spoiler warning here. Obviously.

Reasons why Skyfall is an Abridged Version of Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy:

Hero's parents are killed when he is young.
Hero is raised by kind old man after the death of his parents.
Stately manors.
With secret caves.

 Bad guy feels betrayed and seeks revenge.

Hero returns from an extended absence and is initially considered unfit for duty. 
And he has a beard.
Woman talks about how afraid she is of bad guy.

 Witty banter with guy who makes hero's gadgets.

 Bad guy dresses like a police officer and tries to kill a government official.

Unusual facial scars.

Bad guy is arrested...
...but it was part of his plan all along.
Authority figure's judgement is questioned.

Kick-ass car in a secret garage.

 Kick-ass car gets blown up.

 Hero's mansion gets burned down.

 Concludes with a glimpse of the future.


Or maybe I'm just being nitpicky.


  1. Im pretty sure you are not being nitpicky...

    1. I'm pretty sure he is being nitpicky...

    2. He's both nitpicking and got a point. Mendes did say he got some of his ideas from the Nolan Batman series. Perhaps "some" meant all of those "coincidences".

  2. The fact that Bonds parents are both dead since he was a boy has long been established. There are books, old books, older then the Dark Knight series, that the movies are based on.

    The parallels you draw are jokes. "Kick-ass car in secret garage" you are right, that never happened in a Bond movie before..., "Witty banter with guy who makes hero's gadgets." Seriously? Is this the first Bond you have ever watched...?

    Just because a director praises another directors style does not mean the story is also inspiring to him. Nolan wrote the story to Dark Knight, yes, but Mendes did not write the story to Skyfall.

    1. Lets not get too carried away... James Bond as a character was only created in 1953. Batman's (and his dead parents) been around since 1939.

    2. Maybe I didn't clarify, Skyfall is not the same movie as TDK or TDKR. The comparisons are ridiculous.

      It is a whole other discussion if Flemming ripped off Kane by creating Bond. (Which I would say he didn't, but honestly, think what you want...)

  3. I don't understand, of all the movies, Harry Potter is the nearest equivalent of Batman: he's parents die, mentored by someone (Defence Against The Dark Arts professors), suddenly decides to fight evil, deranged villains, and , as obvious it can get, puts a "mask" on to cover up their true feelings.

  4. Does nobody here understand anything about films? There are only so many scenarios that we can use to make high-concept films. That being said, the fact that these characters have similar pasts and similar goals is because of their archetypes.

  5. A nicle little case study in formulaic writing... I wonder how many other movies you could throw on those panels.

    If books and movies have taught me anything it's that being orphaned at a young age GUARANTEES a wise older mentor and a kick ass car.