Bond hits the scene

To succeed, a James Bond movie must traffic in equal parts sophistication and pure preposterousness, a winking willingness not to take itself too seriously, but with peerless writing, acting and production values. All of those elements are on hand in “Skyfall.”

At the outset, Bond (Daniel Craig) is in Istanbul, pursuing a bad guy through bazaars and over rooftops in a ludicrous motorcycle chase. That episode will send Bond into something of an existential spiral, bringing him alongside Jason Bourne and other au courant secret agents as people who are fighting not just shadowy forces of mass destruction but also their inner demons.

When Bond flies into action after a self-imposed hiatus, he’s an Oedipal wreck, bleary-eyed, out of shape and visibly aging. The not-so-sub-subtext of “Skyfall” is the ongoing dialogue between past and future, whether it’s youth vs. age, computers vs. analog, or point-and-click terrorism vs. old-school geopolitics.

The DVD (Sony, $30) includes a four-part making-of documentary, while the Blu-ray ($40) adds eight more segments and commentary.

Washington Post


Colin Covert says: “Skyfall” is a mixed bag. Some of it is terrific. And some of it is spectacular.


Also out Tuesday

Movies: “Bully,” “Dangerous Liaisons,” “Jedi Junkies,” “The Kid With a Bike,” “The Man With the Iron Fists,” “The Perks of Being a Wallflower,” “Robot & Frank,” “The Sessions,” “Silent Hill: Revelation.”

TV: “Gossip Girl” (Season 6), “The Hardy Boys” (Season 3), “Nurse Jackie” (Season 4), “Weeds” (Season 8).



‘Madden’ wins again

While “Madden NFL 13” didn’t predict the power failure that left the Superdome dark and delayed the game for 30 minutes, it got just about everything else correct. With the Baltimore Ravens’ 34-31 win over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII, the official “Madden NFL” Super Bowl prediction correctly foretold the exact point difference in the game and has now correctly named the winner of eight of the past 10 Super Bowls.

The “Madden NFL” Super Bowl prediction, which was run using “Madden NFL 13,” also correctly forecasted Joe Flacco as MVP of the game.

“On any given Sunday anything can happen because there’s so much parity in the league, almost any team can beat another team,” said Cam Weber, general manager of EA Sports football. “We have had fairly good results at having point spreads between teams that are accurate. You can’t account for everything like turnovers or lights going out, but we have an accurate game engine and when our computers are controlling these players, the match-ups are coming across in another way.”



Become a musician

Jam for iPhone (free, with extra features 99 cents each; is the iOS Instagram for music, according to its maker. The app turns anyone, including those who are musically challenged, into rock stars by turning their singing into musical masterpieces.

Your lyrics are recorded, and then the app turns them into a song using the melody, scale and chords supported by it. Musical instruments, such as trumpets and guitars, can be added.

After you’re done, the tune can be saved to social media or just made into an MP3.

McClatchy News Service