Spectre, a Letdown

For any James Bond fan there’s a certain level of action and excitement we expect to get from the 007 films.  Unfortunately, I found the latest Bond film Spectre, to fall quite short of these expectations.  Prior to the movies release Daniel Craig had already released a statement stating this was the end of his reign as the notorious crime fighter.  Despite this news, I think we all still planned on watching a movie we thoroughly enjoyed and seeing the Craig era wrap up in style.  However, what we actually got was a lackluster film in which the actor’s disinterest in the role is all too apparent.  To his credit, he wasn’t horrible; it was a very bland performance in a role which is supposed to bring energy to the theater.  Craig is not the only one to blame for the films effect. In fact, I think the writing and the script was where the film really fell short, and in the end were what led me to come to these conclusions about Craig’s performance.

The film starts off on a great note.  The opening sequence features a typical Bond moment with chases, explosions, and guns; it starts the movie on the right foot.  The interesting aspect is that two and a half hours later I realized I could have left after the first twenty minutes and gotten what I hoped for when I bought my ticket.  The first scene sets the stage for the films plot, which features 007 in a global chase for a criminal organization, which we later find out is headed by a figure from Bond’s childhood, Ernst Blofeld.  Blofeld, played by Christoph Waltz, is an extremely dynamic character whose treachery is quite disturbing.  As a huge Christoph Waltz fan, he was definitely my favorite aspect of the film.  The role was compelling and Waltz brought a witty and evil element to the character I found to be very effective. Despite what I found to be a solid performance, I found Waltz was not able to completely take over the film like so many villainous characters.  In my opinion it is the story line that fell short and the reason why the acting was not nearly as powerful as it could have been.  In a great movies, the actors completely take over the film and in Spectre I don’t think we saw this.

A great example of the movie’s lack of substance can be seen when Bond and his acquaintance escape from Blofeld’s entrapment.  Being held in some sort of power plant, Bond escapes while being tortured by using a watch bomb.  This was one small aspect Bond fans could appreciate.  After all, gadgets have always been a key element in the films.  When they do escape, they head out and run through the plant in typical Bond-like fashion, but we don’t see a scene with any substance.  In a mere two minutes, they have escaped torture, ran through an entire power plant unscathed, and somehow managed to blow up the entire plant in the process while escaping in a helicopter. My issue with the scene, and with the movie in general, was what we see here; scenes with so much potential but fall short the entire time.  If the writers and director had gotten rid of thirty minutes and simply expanded on some of the other scenes, I think the film would have been more enjoyable.

Now, all this is merely my opinion on the film.  The majority of my friends saw the film, and most of them actually liked it.  I’ve also read numerous critic reviews stating how much they enjoyed it, some even questioning if it was the best film yet.  Not to say other people are wrong or can’t have their own opinions, but for me, the film was a disappointment.  Maybe my expectations were simply too high after how fantastic the previous Bond film Skyfall was. Who knows?  Bottom line, if you’re a Bond fan go see the film for yourself. Now we can all look forward to finding out who the next 007 will be.

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