Review: Spectre

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Bond is back – and don’t we all know it?! The trailers are shown in every advert break and posters are on the side of every bus, plus Daniel Craig is telling the world and his wife that he never wants to play Bond ever again. All of which is culminating in a perfect storm of PR for the film.

Spectre has a lot to live up to after Skyfall, which really tapped into the 50th anniversary of the Bond franchise as well as the national pride Britain was experiencing what with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics. Skyfall really fit into the mood of the nation.

Spectre is a slightly different animal, for a start it feels a bit more like a classic Bond film. There’s a bit more humour, there are multiple exotic locations, stunning clothes and a slightly more wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am attitude to, at least the first of the ‘Bond Girls’. This came as a surprise, as quite a lot of the promo for the film focused of the fact that Monica Bellucci was going to be the oldest Bond Girl yet, but she is criminally underused and her seduction scene is a little too easy, if you’ll pardon the pun. Girls have been this disposable in Bond’s past, but not Craig’s Bond. So this jars a bit.

But as a whole Spectre really does have everything you want from a Bond film: action; sexiness; massive set-pieces; personal drama; a super-villain; a seemingly indestructible henchman; car chases; boat chases; planes; helicopters; gadgets; torture and witty one-liners. It seems to be getting kicked around a bit by people, but for me it’s up there with Skyfall, though Casino Royale has been the high-water-mark of the Craig run.

There are some places where you have to suspend your disbelief, for example: Where do they get those stylish cloths in the middle of the desert? Especially in those tiny suitcases! Also, does a villain in this gritty timeline really need a secret lair-style base in a crater in the desert? Especially in a world where all the villains so far have essentially been businessmen.

Everyone gets a good crack at the whip in this film though, Craig is great, even though he claims it was torture, Léa Seydoux is sexy, smart and knows how to fight, Ben Wishaw gets more to do in the field as Q, as does Ralph Fiennes’ M. Christolph Waltz plays an eccentric villain and another newcomer, Andrew Scott as C (Moriarty in Sherlock) is a slimy character with ulterior motives looking to replace MI6 and spies with drones and CCTV.

The end of the film leaves things ambiguous with where Bond will end up after this, Craig is contracted for one more film, but everything points towards him walking away, which is a shame.But the fun now comes from guessing who will play the iconic spy next. In the meantime, we have three great movies… and Quantum of Solace… to enjoy.

Spectre is great, go see it.

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