Becoming great is one thing. Remaining great is an altogether different task. The James Bond franchise saw itself reinvigorated with new life with the new iteration of Bond-Casino Royale. Mission Impossible and Bourne proved themselves to be quite the competition in the spy/thriller/action genre and Bond after Quantum of Solace (which I still blame the writer’s strike for) took a great big misstep.
However, the Bond series really rose head and shoulders above the competition and shook off the weight of its predecessors in Skyfall, a well rounded film that had it all.
So the natural question to ask having been on this journey and arrived at Spectre is this – is it better than Skyfall? This film is a finale, cleverly weaving together elements and threads from previous Craig bond outings into a believable plot. Sam Mendes goes above and beyond shooting impeccable scenes; every shot is beautiful-the incredible attention to detail is enrapturing to behold. The casting director needs a pat on the back for selecting people who fit into the elegant frames.
The script is not as silly as some of the older Bonds but Craig’s Bond finally gets to explore some humour and it’s greatly appreciated – the audience laughed out loud many times, it didn’t feel out of place at all. There are the obvious Bond tropes that happen, in fact one might tick them off as they are happening but it’s all crafted in a way that feels as organic as possible rather than forced for the sake of sticking to a well-worn recipe.
Bond’s character is explored, his relevance in the modern age questioned, his character and motivations laid bare, progressively rather than clumsily. Craig’s Bond has been exploring all these themes often being compared to more modern means of spy craft and their competencies. This outing in Spectre more than any other, addresses these themes and attempts to answer the question resolutely. As with anything, it’s open to interpretation but I’d wager the themes were tied up neatly in this outing to call it a day if they don’t come up with anything better in the near future.
Spectre will be hard to follow. Then again that’s part of the fun and the challenge of making Bond better. Bond was great in this movie, his character being fleshed out so much more, the perilous scenarios he is placed in, riveting and tense. If the rumours are to be believed then this is Daniel Craig’s last Bond movie but I do sincerely hope he returns for at least one more-he’s been great.
So in conclusion, was SPECTRE better than Skyfall? It’s a different chapter and therefore I feel they can’t be compared like for like, that being said, in my opinion yes, but who’s to say I won’t change my mind? I am going back to watch it again after all. It’s that good.
Star rating: 5/5 KUDOS to the Cast and Crew
Why watch it?: The train scene brawl alone is worth the price of admission.