SPECTRE – Review with spoilers after first paragraph
Its 1977, in a dingy ABC picture house in Brighton, UK and a white sports car slowly emerges from the ocean. The window winds down as a hand emerges from within the car holding what looks like a dead fish. Bond gifts us the apologetic eyebrow as he deposits the dead fish onto the beach to the gasps of the beachy onlookers. “This guy . . . woah”
So began my love affair with Bond and as I settled down to watch the much anticipated and marketed Spectre, I recalled my mental check list:-
Exciting rip roaring opening scene – Check
Rousing theme tune with trippy credit sequence – Check
Dapper bulldog Bond grunting snarling and peacocking his way across the globe –Check
Settle in guys, we are back in Bond and it’s gonna be some Spectre-cal
Or is it. You see, as an action movie I would say it delivers, with a scene setting prelude, globetrotting action set pieces and an explosive finale, but as a Bond movie, to a Bond movie fan, it is lazy unsympathetic and, worst of all, not of the Bond brand.
Craig delivers again with his brooding chiselled performance, and has re-invented Bond to be his own. Some say he is the best screen Bond ever, and again on this performance it would be hard to disagree, but he is certainly different to the other Bonds, significantly enough to exist in his own right, without the messy comparisons. So Daniel, well done, if this is your last you have crafted a unique Bond.
The film though, well herein lies the rub . . .
You see Bond movies are a “thing”. Bond tropes are essential to a Bond movie. From the opening action scenes, the trippy opening credits, explosions, locations and martinis, to the bad guys with signature kill moves and damsels in distress; it’s all there! Mendes has ticked the boxes, but that’s it. It feels as if we are watching a “build your own Bond” movie that is less than its constituent parts.
Let me expand.
Bad Guy – Mr Hinx. We see why he is “the man” early on in the movie but his signature moves are not alluded to at any other point in the movie. He becomes muscle-meat to hire! - Lazy
“C” – The climax of “C” and “M” is very sudden, poorly choreographed and shot and over way too fast for one of the pivotal story lines in the movie – lazy
Car Chase – yes, its present, but it poorly executed, and seems slow, mainly due to the choice of slow panning shots, score and slow cuts and unoriginal camera positioning – lazy
Gadgets – the use of a gadget to beat the main bad guy is standard Bond affair. When this scene is over in about 5 minutes of screen time, including the destruction of a huge complex, I feel short changed – LAZY
Christoph Waltz – Was hoping for huge things as a fan of his Inglorious Basterds german officer performance, but he is woefully under used, with a leash on and is rarely allowed breathe menace into the evil genius kingpin character – LAZY LAZY
So, I know I’m being picky but I honestly wanted a Bond movie. I was sold a Bond movie. I was promised a Bond movie. What I got was a perfectly functional action movie which was certainly no Bourne or Mission Impossible, but was a ride worth taking, albeit over long.
But as a Bond movie, it under delivered and the franchise has, in my opinion, hit a brick wall. Bond is M.I.A
Action Movie = 7/10 but 6/10 because of the length . .
Bond Movie 3/10