Netflix Instant Queue Diaries: Archangel
Before a man becomes James Bond there seems to be a criteria that must be fulfilled. One must be suave, charismatic with a tinge of misogynist thrown in. After all this is the spy who’s too cool for a code name. Everyone knows his reputation. They even know how he likes his martinis.
To fulfill the Bond profile Roger Moore first starred as The Saint – a detective named Simon Templar who solved cases with a debonair attitude and masterful disguises. There was also Pierce Brosnan who played a mysterious man and was given the name Remington Steele to act as a front for a female headed detective agency. Each week Brosnan showed why he was the best choice for the mantle of James Bond. But what of Daniel Craig? What were his credentials that showed he could be 007?
The answer is the BBC miniseries “Archangel.” Based on the book by Englishman Robert Harris, the television show showed how a historian gets entangled in a mystery that involves Stalin, a woman, her diary and a child. Placed in present time Russia Fluke Kesko (Craig) gets embroiled in this escapade that is action packed from the beginning.
From this series you can tell why Craig was chosen for the rough-around-the-edges agent who M (Dame Judi Dench) pleaded with “not to kill every potential lead.” His Bond is tough, hardened and tragic. He also gets beaten on like a drum in both Bond films. However it is in Archangel where you can see how it’s possible to play the man with that iconic theme song.
The miniseries itself holds very little in the surprise department. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t suspenseful. The possibility of Stalin having left a legacy behind is something the old guard wants found. For the newer generation it may not hold value, but for the ones who remember Stalin it’s a part of their heritage where they were feared and before there were Armani suits and a McDonald’s marring the landscape. Any chance for a grasp of greatness even if it’s from the past is worth finding and in some cases killing for.
There’s also chemistry between the actors. Not just sexual, but the dialogue comes alive. Between the frustration of being thwarted by agents and secret police and a corrupt system the actors are constantly challenging each other and the material in the screenplay. It makes for compelling viewing.
So if you’re in the mood for a Bond-like experience and can’t seem to find a 007 film on check out Archangel on the instant Queue.
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