“It was me, James. The author of all your pain.” Yes, yes it was you [Sam Mendes]…
I really wanted to love this film, but about halfway through I was bored, and I’m never usually bored in a Bond film.
Personally, not only do I think Daniel Craig has given up in the making of this movie, so too has director Mendes, but then again Skyfall (2012) is a hard act to follow. What started well with the Day of the Dead celebration opening sequence quickly took a naff turn the minute Bond scampered off to the Austrian alps to find Dr Madeleine Swann (Léa Seydoux). When he emerged in the snow looking like some weirdo male model with black shades, I thought to myself, if the pouting wasn’t bad enough, now we have Craig auditioning for a part in Zoolander.
And then the plot – with all it’s nostalgic nods towards Sean Connery – becomes a little bit disjointed; from the hidden room behind the wall of a hotel room once occupied by Swann’s father, to the train ride from hell into the middle of the desert, as the viewer you are waiting for one big moment of realisation (which does come eventually), but instead find yourself drowning in a Blofeld mish mash of cat-and-mouse chase scenes and ticking time bombs. It’s all a bit ‘meh’, where’s the suspense gone?
The ending is ‘not Bond’ at all – for me, it hints at a change in direction of the Bond character as we know it. Could this signal the re-booting of the franchise? I almost certainly wouldn’t be surprised if this is Craig’s last Bond film – it has that feel about it. Thank God Mendes isn’t coming back either – what was he thinking?
So, there you have it. Warts and all. It lacked a Silva villain. One who unnerved you. One who made you think. Unfortunately, I would only award this film 3 out of 5 stars.