WHAT I LIKED: Criticising a Bond movie for being too far-fetched or ridiculous is a bit like calling out a documentary for being too realistic. This series has always been utterly crazy, and 'Die Another Day,' is undoubtedly the film which embraces that to the fullest with its absurd humour, spectacularly garish action and expensive gadgets. It's a film that has fun with the silliness of the franchise and which revels in the joy of all that without taking itself too seriously, and that's something that I personally rather enjoy.
As ever though, engagement doesn't come from any of that, and instead that's brought thanks to the fact that this is actually one of the Bond films which successfully gets under the central character's skin - despite whatever silliness sits on the surface. Brosnan's Bond here is arguably tested more than in any predecessos as he's tortured by the North Koreans, disregarded by MI6, and then ends up on a vengeful mission against the people who betrayed him. That means we get a glimpse beneath his super-cool exterior like we did in 'The World is Not Enough,' which ultimately makes his mission and ultimate success all the more gratifying.
WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE: Stylistically, it is undoubtedly the most absurd and bombastic James Bond film, and that ultimately means the classier side of things falls by wayside, and - more importantly - some of that serious engagement is undermined.
VERDICT: It's the most absurd and outlandish Bond film stylistically (and frankly there's nothing wrong with that), but with its harsher revenge story 'Die Another Day,' is actually one of the most emotionally-engaging films in its series.