Thoughts on the final time Daniel Craig has turned out as James Bond.
1. The film continues the Craig Bond’s tradition of grounding the character into reality and making his personal journey as important as the booze and the action. This is also a trend that one can detect in many contemporary films and franchises, from Marvel tentpoles to Sherlock Holmes to Ethan Hunt to Jason Bourne. One can say that No Time To Die goes above and beyond the job of 007 and gives a lot of time to the personal life of James Bond. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, even if it can be a divisive choice.
2. The visuals and the action are top-notch, as expected. Cary Joji Fukunaga brings a distinct focus on the visual aspects of the story. I expected the film to have tons of great shots, and I wasn’t disappointed at all. The set pieces are excellent as well. I must say that the film has at least two action set-pieces that are better than the climactic one.
3. The film’s dialogues constitute a mixed bag. There are some sharp lines scattered here and there, and some biting, dry humour as well. But a lot of the film’s dialogues feel predictable and clichéd. I expected a lot better.
4. The film’s runtime has been an issue with some viewers. Personally, I found myself enjoying it enough to not be bothered that the film wasn’t shorter. There is a lot to pack in the various threads and unravelling of the secrets that the film takes on. It’d have been a confusing mess/far more difficult watch if it’d been shaved to conform to the standard action flick’s running time.
5. I wasn’t satisfied with outcomes that the film chooses for the hero’s journey. Without giving away spoilers, and with the rider that I understand the reasons for the writers’ choices, I think there was enough to go 180° off on this.
6. The opening credits are some of the best for a James Bond film. The theme song is excellent as well, if not as instantly iconic as Skyfall. Give it a few plays on the loop though…
Verdict: There are unconvincing bits about the film, but it’s an overall recommended watch.