Director: Sam Mendes
Cast: Daniel Craig, Christoph Waltz, Léa Seydoux, Ralph Fiennes
Release: October 26, 2015
Review Author: Tony
Rating: 3/5 cans of Guinness
It’s been over a month since I’ve seen Spectre so it’s given me a lot of time to reflect on how I feel about this film considering how excited I was leading up to its release. The first trailer for Spectre had me sold as it had an air of mystery and intrigue about it rather than quick cuts of explosions and car chases. I have zero issues with explosions and car chases and I also think that this franchise holds some of the best seen on film, but I really wanted to see a film which tried something new, something fresh. Unfortunately Spectre failed to deliver on my fairly high expectations and didn’t deliver on the promises it made.
I interpreted from the initial trailer that the film was going to finally explore the 007 mythology and perhaps reveal a reason for different actors being able to fill the role. Also it revealed that Bonds past was catching up with him. Spectre barely scratches the surface of either of these interesting concepts
Most of the hype for Spectre came from Mendes and the cast as they promised us that this was Daniel Craig’s last performance as Bond. Craig has been an excellent 007 giving the franchise a much-needed rejuvenation so his send of should be a worthy one. After seeing Spectre I can tell you this is a cop-out as Craig has already hinted that he’ll return to the role and while I won’t spoil the ending I have to say it was rather poor leaving little to no closure.
I’m not saying that Spectre is a bad film in fact it left me very conflicted because the quality of the film is top-notch with a breath-taking opening sequence, amazing fight choreography and a brilliant car chase through the streets of Rome. The problem with Spectre is that it’s perhaps the most Bond film in the Bond series offering nothing new, it at times feels like Mendes is making a throwback film to the Sean Connery era with Spectre containing a lot of the series clichés such as the henchman, a torture sequence, the villains monologue that lays out his entire master plan.
The film is fantastic to look at which is a staple in Sam Mendes films, but here he is aided by cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema delivering some amazing looking landscapes. Spectre takes place in many different countries allowing both Mendes and Hoytema to capture the beauty of each respective country.
Daniel Craig is in top form as James Bond who refers to himself as an Assassin rather than a spy who definitely represents his character better as Bond isn’t exactly the master of espionage. Craig’s bond is ruthless and almost unstoppable here but most importantly he’s flawed but knows it, it’s this self-awareness that I love because he knows his limitations so instead he fights to his strengths. Christoph Waltz is rather disappointing as the films villain as he’s not given enough screen time to make any significant impact, also there’s a revelation about his character that is a no brainer for long-time fans of the series which plays out the exact same way as Khans reveal in Star Trek Into Darkness which is massively underwhelming.
Spectre is a solid action film and a decent Bond film but plays it safe which it had no right to after the success and praise Skyfall received. I might have enjoyed the film more if I’d ignored the hype and trailers which I think sold a different film. Mendes tried to make a Sean Connery bond film with a seductive romance and quirky one-liners but the romantic plot comes off as rushed and the one liners are so jarring and out-of-place among the serious tone of the film that Spectre seems more Like a Roger Moore Bond film.