"Spectre" Film Review
By: Nathaniel Simpson
Daniel Craig returns as James Bond in "Spectre", the follow-up to the critically and commercially acclaimed film, "Skyfall". Though both were directed by Sam Mendes, fans and critics alike consider this installment to be a major downgrade from its predecessor, with many blaming the lackluster story for its downfall. However, I didn't see the story as being as bad as everyone says. Sure, it's not as good or entertaining as "Casino Royale" or "Skyfall", but I still think it's a pretty decent entry in the Daniel Craig series.
Craig plays an older, more witty and fun Bond in this film. Unlike his quiet and hard-ass character he portrayed in the earlier films, he uses a lot more humor and sarcasm along the film. Even though this is very fun to watch, and it looks like Craig is having a good time, I'm torn whether I like this portrayal of Bond or not. We have been shown a more serious and cold Bond in the previous three films, but now he's cracking jokes in almost every scene and using a lot of dry humor? It doesn't seem like the same character, but it is still very fun nonetheless.
The film does drag quite a bit. There are scenes that just seem to take way too long, and they prove nothing crucial to the plot going forward. However, this is made up for in a way by the incredible action sequences, including the scene where Bond fights off former WWE wrestler Bautista in a moving train.
Another reason that could explain the film's slow moving plot is the fact they incorporated a lot of politics into this movie. While we are watching Bond trying to take down the evil Blofeld (Christoph Waltz), we explore a secondary plot where M (Ralph Fiennes, taking over for Judi Dench) is trying to figure out how to stop the takeover of MI6, and the ultimate shutdown of the 00 program. It just seems like a very weird storyline to have in a James Bond film, and the secondary antagonist throughout this storyline is annoying and wasteful.
However, the chemistry between Bond and Madeleine (Léa Seydoux) is absolutely incredible. This is perhaps the best Bond and Bond girl chemistry we have had through Craig's run. They are both very dynamic, and share the screen together wonderfully.
This was set up to be Craig's final film as 007, with him making remarks that he would rather kill himself than play James Bond again. However, we are receiving one final film from Craig, which has been pushed back due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. It'll be interesting to see how they finally send off his character, as I loved the final scene of this film where him and Madeleine ride off into the sunset, loving each other forever.