The most recent installments of James Bond (ones featuring Daniel Craig) have fewer gadgets but more raw action (like the chase sequences in Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace). Is it because of plot related changes to the MI:6 or have the movies been altered to suit the audiences?

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    i have no evidence, but I guess the Bourne series had a lot to do with it.
    – Codemwnci
    Dec 2, 2011 at 14:22
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    And they also changed the initial animation of bond firing at the screen, a tradition followed for the last couple of decades.
    – Vimal Raj
    Dec 2, 2011 at 15:58
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    I personally miss all the gadgets... they were a key part of the classic "Bond" film for me.
    – scunliffe
    Dec 13, 2011 at 18:37
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    Shouldn't the question be something like "Why are the Daniel Craig Bond films less gadget-oriented than the earlier ones the series?" As it is worded now, the question implies that James Bond himself is not tech savvy, which is a completely different question (and inaccurate, I think).
    – stevvve
    Dec 5, 2012 at 16:13
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    Given Bond's ability to uncover M's real name and home address, break into her residence, access MI6's databases using her account, and hack a suspect's phone to determine point of origin of a text message, it would appear Bond is actually more tech savvy and less reliant on Q's gadgets than the one from the preceding Bond universe. Apr 14, 2014 at 0:00

8 Answers 8


I don't think it had any plot driven change. The Bond franchise was feeling threatened by newer spy movies (such as the Bourne series) which have more action, (slightly) more plausible plots (compared to ray-gun satellites etc), and have less comedic elements.

A reboot with a new younger actor and a deliberate step away from some of the conventions of the franchise (gadgets & moneypenny for example) were their answer.

They tried to take it this direction before - a Licence to Kill was a deliberate attempt with a drug-smuggling and revenge plot-line, but wasn't well done. They then decided to switch back to more 'classic' Bond approaches with Brosnan.

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    I myself find "License to Kill" (and generally Dalton as Bond) one of the best, but this is surely subjective.
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Dec 2, 2011 at 15:58
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    I too liked Dalton, but don't remember License to Kill with much fondness. Perhaps I was expecting too many Bond cliche's which did not happen. I should watch it again.
    – iandotkelly
    Dec 2, 2011 at 16:03
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    @ChristianRau - looking at the numbers License to Kill at the time was the worst performing Bond Movie when looking at Worldwide gross takings vs Budget (3.7-times). They had a gap of 6 years before the Brosnan era began. Whether critically good or not I can't really remember, but commercially it was not as successful. Interestingly Quantum of Solace whilst it has almost the highest gross of any Bond, its cost was so huge it only just made over twice what it cost - far worse than License to Kill by that measure.
    – iandotkelly
    Dec 6, 2011 at 18:31

Love the other answers already given but one extra contributory factor may be that, and you may not remember this, there was a huge backlash against 'Die Another Day's over-use of frankly bullshit technology and the makers commented at the time that they knew they'd gone too far. In particular the invisible car was just laughed at when I saw it theatrically, as was the huge laser that could destroy land targets but seemed to only warm up the plane gradually, plus the ice-hotel, the VR headset and a number of other items that not only didn't add anything but actually made the film laughable.

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    There was an Ice Hotel in the movie (I didn't see it)? That's real: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_hotel
    – Mnementh
    Dec 13, 2011 at 11:45
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    I know there is a real one but the one on the movie had was huge, had multiple floors, could be driven around/through and wasn't destroyed by a huge space laser that could blow up land.
    – Chopper3
    Dec 13, 2011 at 11:56
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    You beat me to it (granted, by a few days, but still) - this would have been my answer to this question as well. Dec 19, 2011 at 9:09
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    @Chopper3 Wasn't the laser blowing up mines on the land, not the land itself? Not defending this, agree with your answer about too much silly tech.
    – AidanO
    Mar 21, 2012 at 11:43
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    Hah yeah, in fact Die Another Day is the new Moonraker. ;-)
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Sep 17, 2013 at 13:01

The new movies starring Daniel Craig were intended as a reboot of the series. As part of that reboot it seems that they have moved away from having so many gadgets and are focusing more on the character's own abilities.

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    Bond is now more Superman than Batman, you might say.
    – hairboat
    Dec 2, 2011 at 15:38
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    @AbbyT.Miller He seems much more "Kickass" than "Superman" ;)
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Dec 2, 2011 at 16:00
  • @NapoleonWilson more Red Mist: Bond has daddy's (Britain's) money to buy nice gadgets, but still doesn't quite know what to do with them.
    – user9311
    Nov 11, 2015 at 7:32

After seeing the preview to the new movie Skyfall, I think there might be another possible explanation. In the preview, they introduce Q for the first time in the reboot. They also seem to imply that Q is going to "revitalize" MI6, maybe with more emphasis on tech support instead of purely physical methods of getting information (as Daniel Craig has done in the earlier movies). Perhaps there are not as many gadgets because this reboot emphasizes the beginning of 007 and is before Q is there to create the gadgets.


I don't think Bond is less "tech savvy" in the new Bond films. It is a definite move away from the Moore/Brosnan era. The new approach to the character is less tech driven and moves more toward the literary character. Although the Bourne films can be credited for the more gritty fight scenes and slick editing, you only have to look back at From Russia with Love and On Her Majesty's Secret Service for early examples of this style of Bond. Both of these Bond films were credited to be nearer the literary character than any other and were also very low tech in comparison to other movies. It would seem that the Daniel Craig Bond is a step in this direction which (for me) is a very good thing.


It could be due to the now wider spread knowledge of technology. People are more educated about science and technology now and would be less willing to forget or believe any of these technical feats. Instinctively they reject them. It's laughable for a person such as James Bond to know so much about gadgets and technology which would make anyone who is a little tech-savvy laugh and mock what's been done in previous movies of the franscise (eg think about Roger Moore disarming a nuclear bomb in 'The Spy who Loved Me' and never even sweats!, or the bond-turned-star-wars in 'Die Another Day', or I can think of at least 8 other laughable occassions).

I find the approach that started with Daniel Craig definitely more realistic. Daniel Craig's Bond is not a superhuman, he's grounded, he's in pain, he hurts, he doesn't have an answer and a joke for everything and as such the audience can sympathize with him. Other spy movies like Bourne (which was better than almost all Bond movies at the time) or Mission Impossible influenced this turn of the tide.


Parkour was Hot at that time The director (GoldenEye and Zorro fame) is fond of stunts


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    Do you have any references of interviews or the such that explain this?
    – Tablemaker
    Apr 18, 2012 at 16:49
  • Explain what, @TylerShads? It is a fact! Read Wikipedia's entry for Parkour; CR was the first mainstream English movie featuring it. not to mention its French undertone (as opposed to earlier Russian, German, Swiss locations)... and to speak of Martin Campbell's action flicks!
    – Pop Stack
    Apr 19, 2012 at 9:34
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    Right, but none of those 'facts' are backed up by references to prove them so. I can spout all day that It is fact that the sun is purple But if I have no references to back up this fact then it is purely opinion.
    – Tablemaker
    Apr 19, 2012 at 12:27

The Daniel Craig films are set at the beginning of 007's career - I imagine there is less technology in them because it's meant to be the earlier days of MI6, so less technologically advanced? This is total conjecture on my part though. Feel free to correct me...

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    But it takes place in the present. Smartphones and such. This doesn't ring true. Nov 10, 2015 at 22:14

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