Leaving the cinema, I felt an overwhelming sense of relief. A sense of achievement. Not because our blue-eyed Bond had foiled the evil schemes of a peroxide partisan but because the film captured a true sense of contemporary British identity.
I contemplated this dilemma on a crowded flight, as I sat sandwiched between two executives reading business journals of such unimaginable dryness that I longed to have the latest edition of "Closer" to balance them up. We were squished together on an evening flight so full of suits that it seemed to be a scene from "50 Shades of Grey", the bible to bespoke tailoring, and a title with slightly less sado-masochism than its racier namesake.
Dear Sam Mendes, then, can I just say: thank you. Thank you for a Bond movie - finally! - that I'm not embarrassed to have enjoyed.
When she took to the stage in the Olympic Park this summer, it was near impossible to take your eyes off her. She almost melts into her own music, living and breathing each word and note like a one-woman theatre company. It's really quite incredible what this lady can do.
Casino Royale took leaves out of Jason Bourne's book, Quantum of Solace took chapters and Skyfall takes its own leaves too, but from Ian Fleming's source material of MI6's most famous agent. The 23rd James Bond film is a wonderful homage to the unrivalled Sean Connery era.
I left the cinema feeling cheated. This was meant to be a James Bond film. They could have replaced the long dialogue scenes with more action, they could have replaced the darkness with more elements of fun, they could have.... they could have....... they could have made it better.
Bond is famous for only ever drinking Martini - shaken not stirred - and yet in this film he only drinks beer. And not just any beer - Bond only drinks Heineken, because they sponsored the production of the movie.
For Nicholas, the buyer of the famous Kate Middleton see-through dress that allegedly caught Prince William's eye, his take on memorabilia appears to be more finance orientated. "I thought that by acquiring the uber-sexy, rather risque dress of the future Queen of England one cannot go wrong."
The masterstroke of casting Judy Dench as M way back in Goldeneye is still paying off, and Skyfall is unquestionably her finest hour. The relationship between Bond and his mothering commanding officer has always been an intriguing one, and now it is fully explored for the first time.
On 5 October 1962, two culturally momentous events took place on the same day. No-one at the time would have possessed the foresight to scan ahead 50 years, and envision the impact these two titans might have upon the world; how could they? It was just another movie release, and just another debut single from a rhythm and blues band. Except, of course, that movie was a certain 'Dr No'; and that song was 'Love Me Do' by The Beatles.
James Bond Day marks the 50th anniversary of the premiere of the film franchise's first film, Dr. No. And 59 years since Ian Fleming unleashed MI6's finest upon the world, here's why 007 is still relevant.
Ian Fleming's best source material was exhausted long ago. We're down to the tasty crumbs at the bottom of the pack now - the short story Quantum of Solace provided little more than a bracingly cryptic title for Daniel Craig's most recent Bond adventure.
Frankly, I've always been a bit scathing of these big screen action men - the Jason Bournes, James Bonds, Austin Powers (baby!) of this world, most recently the Jeremy Renners. After a while, they all seem to stop smiling in photos, like they've started believing they are actually secret agents in real life, not grown men fighting for mirror-space of a morning, and getting their hair professionally blow-waved.
This Friday night at 9pm, four stars of Coronation Street will appear in Corrie Goes to Kenya, the first of two documentaries on ITV1. The programmes follow Sue Cleaver, Ryan Thomas, Brooke Vincent and Ben Price as they visit Mombasa, where they will use their thespian skills to challenge the misconceptions around HIV/AIDS.
"The isle is full of noises", read the tempestuous pledge on the giant Olympic bell. From the moment that our latest British sporting great, the Belgian-born cycling hero Bradley Wiggins, rang the giant Whitechapel bell, and Kenneth Branagh began to narrate a story of this sceptred isle, Danny Boyle's opening ceremony certainly delivered on the promise.
This year was always destined to be a seminal one for the United Kingdom. Whatever your disillusion may be about Great Britain, the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the London 2012 Olympics have and will draw the eyes of the world onto the British Isles. And a third comes in the form of Bond, James Bond.