Spectre – Film Review
Spectre is the grand finale of the Daniel Craig ‘James Bond’ series. The story comes full circle from the first film “Casino Royale (2006).” Daniel Craig does a serviceable job as Bond in this entry. The film has great talent overall with Christoph Waltz, Monica Bellucci and Lea Seydoux — but doesn’t utilize them each effectively. Christoph Waltz and Dave Bautista were under utilized. They didn’t give Bautista more than one word of dialogue. They could have better developed the character just as much as they could have developed Waltz character too. There wasn’t as much pay off with him as the villain of the film.
You are a kite dancing in a hurricane, Mr Bond.
The film does go back to the classic Bond formula with the villains having a secret layer and being major masterminds of the whole operation. It was done in a modern day twist to make it make sense for 2015. The writing could have been tighter and had more energy in scenes throughout the film. Though the locations and scenery have very strong cinematography, it doesn’t make up for the scenery to have reason for being there. The opening scenes location of Mexico City was the strong highlight out of all the locations.
The opening tracking shot with Bond in a “Day of the Dead” Parade was well crafted and executed. I did have some story issues with thinking they should have had the helicopter fly away from the crowd but it was well done none the less. The visuals for the title credit sequence were great and the flashbacks to the other films were well put into the visual story the credit sequence was setting up. As a singer Sam Smith did a good job but as an overall song — it didn’t really shine like Adele’s ‘Skyfall’. ‘Writings on the Wall’ makes sense towards the end of the film, but the song needed more energy to make it a strong Bond theme besides the use of violins.
The supporting cast of Q, Moneypenny, M and Former M were all underutilized in comparison to Bond. The motives of both Bond women for sleeping with him didn’t seem believable even though he is Bond. Monica Bellucci’s character had nothing to do but have sex with Bond. Q has a few good scenes out in the field but Moneypenny doesn’t do as much as she did in ‘Skyfall.’ It was nice to see her have a life outside of MI6. It was good to see Mr. White back in the story and giving the whole arc a close. The film did rely heavily on whether or not you’ve seen the previous Bond films. It didn’t feel as stand alone as it could have been but it felt like a proper goodbye to Daniel Craig’s Bond.
Overall the film is a classic Bond story told in modern day. It wraps up Bond’s story well and has a fair amount of good action sequences. I’m looking forward to the next phase of Bond. Whether they recast Bond and find a new crew — which I would prefer keeping the new M, Moneypenny, and Q around for a couple more entries — Daniel Craig had a proper close.