Monday, November 9, 2015

Spectre - Review

   In 2015, or the year of the spy, it’s only fitting that the final spy film of the year is the number one guy himself, 007. When it comes to Hollywood, there may be no bigger icon than the role of James Bond. And with so many actors getting the coveted spot as the man with a license to kill over the years, many people will have different preferences. But one thing is for sure; Daniel Craig is certainly making his case better and better.
   A secretive message from a deceased ally leads James Bond (Daniel Craig) to Mexico and eventually to Rome. After making his way through some leads, 007 finds himself at a secret meeting where he uncovers the sinister and expansive group known as Spectre. With the help of Madeleine Swann (Léa Seydoux), the daughter of a former adversary, Bond sets out to destroy the villainous organization and it’s dastardly leader Franz Oberhauser (Christoph Waltz).
   Spectre gets going right out of the gate with a pretty spectacular opening action sequence through the streets of Mexico City. Set during the Mexican holiday Dias de los Muertos, the atmosphere is certainly helpful in creating the tone of the action and setting the film in the right direction. Even if the theme song, “Writings on the Wall” by Sam Smith, sets it off a little bit, Spectre maintains the quality of this first action scene. And I must say, for the record, the song is not bad in the slightest, just not suitable to the film.
   Daniel Craig fits right back in where he left off and has clearly fallen into the role of 007. His stoic expressions convey a mystery while being charming at the same time and it’s the ideal mixture for the suave and dangerous spy. Any good hero clearly needs a great villain and who else could you ask for than Christoph Waltz. The clearly phenomenal actor has fun with the evil Oberhauser, bringing a strange sense of glee to his evil deeds.  And then there is the French actress Seydoux, who is already tremendously beautiful but proves here just how talented she is as well.
   The direction from Sam Mendes is not nearly as excellent as it was for the 23rd entry in the franchise Skyfall, but it still is much better than anyone else might be able to do. It’s unclear whether Mendes will return for a third outing in the world of James Bond or not, but after producing two straight solid entries, I believe it would be a welcome return.

    Overall Spectre is less spectacular than Skyfall. It delves a little towards the extravaganza of the films that allowed for Daniel Craig to take over in 2006, but backs off just enough to maintain a more grounded feel throughout a majority of the runtime. The little nods to James Bond lore are great and the matching of moves between Bond and Oberhauser are great when they’re on screen together. The bottom line is that Spectre is a fast and fun ride and a great continuation of the long-standing franchise.  (7.5/10)

So what did you think of Spectre? Have you seen it, do you want to see it, and what's your favorite Daniel Craig Bond film? Comment below and let me know and as always return to I Am Sam for weekly reviews.