Review: Daniel Craig is Definitely the Best Thing About Spectre

Spectre is predictable and obediently follows a typical Bond film trajectory.

3 min read
Bond (Daniel Craig), Q (Ben Whishaw) and Tanner (Rory Kinnear) with the Aston Martin DB10 in Spectre. (Photo: <a href=";theater">Spectre’s Facebook page</a>)

“Everyone thinks you are finished but I think you are just getting started” said one character to James Bond. How we wish this was actually true. The latest 007 movie Spectre is finally out. Directed by Sam Mendes, who also made the hugely successful Skyfall, this one is rumored to be Daniel Craig’s last film playing Ian Fleming’s James Bond.

But before I tell you about the movie I must inform you that we, the citizens of this great country, owe Mr Bond an apology for turning our tantalisingly charming 007 spy agent into a boring ‘maryada purushottam’ trudging along in combat with the passion of a sarkaari babu! 146 mins long minus kisses, all work and no play has made James Bond a dull boy, and for this not Mendes but our Censor Board are to blame. I mean come on, there is more chemistry between Bond and his favorite Aston Martin car than with the Bond girl. So disappointing!

There is more chemistry between Bond and his favorite Aston Martin car than with the Bond girl. (Photo: <a href=";theater">Spectre’s facebook page</a>)
There is more chemistry between Bond and his favorite Aston Martin car than with the Bond girl. (Photo: Spectre’s facebook page)

James Bond films are all about believing in a cult – the cult of a drop-dead gorgeous man with sexy cars and sexier girls, who likes his Martini shaken not stirred, wields the latest gadgets and never ceases to amaze us with his signature style, magnetic charm and suave demeanor. It’s obviously great to be back in the universe where this man-god operates but we soon realise that Mendes is so determined to fit Daniele Craig and this whole film into the classic Bond movie format that everything from the car chases, helicopter sequences to the pursuit of the villain and the company of his Bond Girl follows a predictable path. I love James Bond films. Daniel ‘oh so hot’ Craig in his immaculate suit taking aim while buildings collapse in the background and the signature Bond tune reaches its crescendo is stuff that makes my heart go aflutter.

Daniel Craig as James Bond (Photo: <a href=";theater">Spectre’s facebook page</a>)
Daniel Craig as James Bond (Photo: Spectre’s facebook page)

In his latest outing James Bond is on a mission to kill Oberhauser (Chistoph Waltz), the suspected mastermind behind the global criminal organisation Spectre. Meanwhile MI 6 is fighting for survival as C (Andrew Scott) wants to disband the 00 programme, calling it outdated. Uneasily similar to Mission Impossible Rouge Nation? Damn right!

Lea Seydoux as his “Bond girl” fits the bill. She manages to keep him preoccupied, is herself a tough cookie and looks amazing in a silver evening gown. Had the intimate scenes between the two not been cut by the sanskaari scissors of the Censor Board I would have been in a better position to comment on their oomph factor. As of now they look good holding hands!

Léa Seydoux as Madeleine Swann  (Photo: <a href=";theater">Spectre’s Facebook page</a>)
Léa Seydoux as Madeleine Swann (Photo: Spectre’s Facebook page)

Now coming to Chistoph Walt. His introductory sequence in the movie is brilliantly shot. All dark and shadowy, there is a foreboding air about him. His menacing intentions are revealed soon after and while as the principle villain of the Bond film Waltz is spot on, the fact that we don’t see much of him causes a problem as far as the overall structure of the narrative is concerned. Each time Craig and Waltz come face to face it’s electrifying , some of the action sequences are super engaging, but through the long duration they are sprinkled few and far between, and that’s never a good thing.

Oberhauser (Christoph Waltz) and Madeleine Swann (Léa Seydoux) in Spectre (Photo: <a href=";theater">Spectre’s Facebook page</a>)
Oberhauser (Christoph Waltz) and Madeleine Swann (Léa Seydoux) in Spectre (Photo: Spectre’s Facebook page)

If only the length of the film had been shorter our waiting time for the action sequences could have been cut by half.

While Spectre is predictable and obediently follows the trajectory of a typical Bond film, our love for Daniel Craig I suspect might make us more forgiving and overlook the flaws. Although not perfect, it will work if you keep your expectations in check and mentally prepare yourself to face a sanskaari Bond.

I’ll go with 3.5 QUINTS OUT OF 5. Daniel Craig clearly the best thing about it!

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