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It’s easy to forget just how much the James Bond movies have improved in the Daniel Craig era – or it is until you see Spectre, which might not be a bad Bond movie but certainly has the kind of flaws that make it a less than brilliant outing for the UK’s number one spy. The pre-credits action sequence is a high point of the film and the series in general, while much of what follows is decent but unspectacular Bond material (he travels the globe tracking down an evil conspiracy; the usual business).
The silliness that’s always a danger with Bond is starting to creep back though: it’s hard to maintain the fiction Craig’s Bond is the gritty one when he’s using a car ejector seat. It’s towards the end when the film is at its most Bond-like – let’s just say evil organisation Spectre has a secret headquarters – that it loses energy, as if director Sam Mendes and company knew they had to put this stuff in but wanted it over as quickly as possible. A lacklustre conclusion provides just enough time to dwell on the story’s many gaping plot holes (does Spectre and its sinister leader played by Christoph Waltz even have an evil scheme?). Best to just focus on the action and Craig’s brutal smirk.
Reviewed by Anthony Morris