FILM: Spectre (2015)

A license to kill is also a license to not kill. – M

Spectre follows James Bond, Britain’s number one secret agent, as he goes AWOL to investigate a mystery that has ties to his childhood. The plot unfolds in a measured and deliberate fashion, but does tend to run a little too slow in spots. Some plot threads felt rough around the edges and little unnatural, for example, The Madeline Swann plotline.

Daniel Craig knocks it out of the park, yet again, as the self-destructive super spy. Considering how much emotional turmoil he has been through in his previous outings, Spectre felt a lot lighter, and we finally get to see Bond have a bit of fun, as fleeting as those moments are. His supporting cast did well too, with Ben Wishaw’s ‘Q’ as the clear stand out.

My biggest gripe with Spectre is that the plot still seems to be linked to the previous films. All the films since Casino Royale have an overarching storyline that connects them all in some way. While this is admirable when done subtly, Spectre’s attempt at it comes off as forced and almost artificial.

A Bond film is nothing without action, however, and the opening sequence is a doozy. It was definitely one of the best one track shots I have ever seen put to film. While it might not seem like a big deal at first, but it takes place during the Day of the Dead parade in Mexico, so the sheer number of extras that needed to be coordinated for the scene in breathtaking. The train fight scene involving the hulking Mr. Hinx, was another highlight.

In the end, Spectre had some great scenes, but the connective tissue between them could have used a little more thought and cleaning up. Additionally, casual moviegoers might find the film’s 148 min. runtime irksome. Nonetheless, even with all of its issues, I dare anyone to not crack a smile when that timeless theme blares over the end credits.

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