This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Lucas🃏’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
This might get a 4.5. I need to sit on it some more.
“You have all the time in the world.”
No Time To Die slaps even harder on rewatch. To say this movie was a great conclusion to Craig’s era of films would be an understatement. It’s probably the most bold and different Bond film of them all and for that reason it works for me. Seeing the life of a more vulnerable Bond being retired is great even if it’s a short period in the beginning. I saw this when it first came out in theaters and cried my eyes out at the end. Watching it for the first time at home was still just as effective. Craig’s Bond is special and by far the best in my eyes. Even taking nostalgia into consideration, I still think his 5 films show the character actually change and have a full arc fulfilled by the end. This movie in particular knew how important it was to come to a worthy conclusion and it did so and more.
The previous films are all even better because of this film. Spectre in particular is one I’m not fond of yet the one scene with Blofeld makes me appreciate it more. Waltz was a horribly underutilized villain yet his couple minutes of screentime here was a big improvement with some sort of actual meaning. Cary Joi Fukunaga is the real superstar here though. He injects this film with so much energy. He respects all the films that came before it while also bringing a fresh new look to Bond. Dare I say it’s the best looking Bond film? I’m not even going to try and shy away from it. As beautiful as Skyfall is, this one shines even more. The opening could be my favorite of the franchise. If you notice the trend, I’ve said that with Casino and Skyfall and now this. That because the filmmakers understand the importance behind a Bond opening and Fukunaga delivers.
It’s bursting with practical stunkwork whether it’s the rope jump off the bridge, the car chase, or with the cherry on top motorcycle jump. Billie Eilish’s song is also such a great follow up even though I prefer Adell’s Skyfall. One of the best moments of the film is followed right after this. Bond’s trust was tested with Vesper in Casino Royale and he has never been able to move on. So his immediate response of thinking Swann portrayed him is amazing. I noticed a small detail this time around that I adored. When he puts her on the train and says she’ll never see him again, she puts her hand on her stomach indicating she’s pregnant with his child. I thought that was really cool. I’ll just say that this might be Craig’s best performance of his 5 films. I feel like with each movie he got better(excluding spectre and Quantum).
We all knew this would be his last Bond movie and he made it clear himself, and because of that he gave it his all and it’s noticeable. He internalizes so much in this movie and I feel he’s the most compelling Bond. Léa Seydoux as Madeleine was not good really at all to me in Spectre. I didn’t understand why her and Bond fell so hard in love. But here she becomes a top tier Bond girl. Making her pregnant was super smart and Bonds face when he first sees her blue eyes is heartwarming. He knew she was his no matter what Swann said. Everyone else’s performance is top notch. Lashana Lynch as the new 007 was cool. It was nice to see another MI6 agent and the banter between he and Bond worked. Q is even better here than he was in Skyfall and his involvement feels more critical.
M is great as always. His scene with Bond when they first reunite is one of my favorites. The whole is the desk bigger joke is peak Bond humor. Felix’s cameo was a lot of fun since it’s been like 15 years. Their little side mission was exciting. Ana De Armas though still steals the entire film. She’s only in the movie for a short while but leaves you wanting so much more from her. Her fight scene is one of the highlights of the film for sure especially considering she acted like she had no idea what she was doing beforehand. I pretty much adore this entire film from head to toe. But the issue that still arises even on second viewing, is Malek as Safin. Now I don’t hate him like I did when I first saw this, but he still isn’t a good villain.
He’s not given enough screentime or development at all and because of that his character suffers. His motivation isn’t clear and makes little sense because of it. The scene where the little girl bites him and he says, “if you don’t want my protection you can leave”, also really bugged me. If he didn’t actually care about holding her hostage why did he the time before that. I hate as well that their was no showdown between Safin and James. I think if you going to kill him off in your final film you should have made the battle more epic with a standout villain but the movie lacks that. The one thing I really do love that he did though was poisoning Bond. Making it to where he can’t touch the love of his life and his daughter is gut wrenching.
The moment that happened I knew his fate and a sadness came over me. I was about to watch one of my favorite movie heros die. They handle is final scene with Swann so gently and when those rockets hit the island I’m in tears. I was just happy Bond knew he was loved in the end, was able to forgive Vesper, and his death was earned and not wasted. In the end, the culmination of Craig’s films ended with a bang. Do I think this could’ve been a masterpiece if the script was reworked? Absolutely! Am I disappointed with what they did with Safin. Of course. But everything else that made up the 2 and a half hour conclusion hit me so hard and I was happy in the end.
Also Zimmer strikes again😮💨.
I will miss you so much Daniel Craig❤️😢.