The student news site of St. Louis Park High School

Bond film fails to impress

Daniel Craig’s reign ends mediocrely

Throughout Daniel Craig’s nine-year tenure as James Bond, he’s done more than most regular people could ever imagine doing. Unfortunately, Sam Mendes’ new film “Spectre,” finds Craig losing his footing as Bond.

The film begins in Mexico City, and is set after the events of “Skyfall,” the previous Bond film, released in 2012. The plot follows Craig’s journey to unearth an underground criminal organization, “Spectre,” and his attempts to eliminate the group and his past in one swift blow.

Mendes, who was brought back as director after his wonderful job with “Skyfall,” does a passable job as the film’s captain, but falls short compared to his last attempt. The biggest error Mendes committed was making a film that runs two-and-a-half hours, which easily leads to a loss of interest. While Mendes makes his mistakes, his directorial talents still shine as bright as his last film. His balance between seriousness and humor is flawless throughout the whole film. Mendes also chooses a plot meant to tie together all of Daniel Craig’s films as Bond, which is a great idea.

Even though Mendes chooses an intriguing plot, it’s executed with multiple flaws. The main issue within the plot is its climax. While the movie is made to tie together all of Craig’s films, the climax doesn’t live up to those expectations. For a regular film, it would’ve been great, and even for a Bond film, it’s still pretty good. But to put the climax in context and say it was impressive would be a lie. It lacks energy, closure and any sense of direction for what will happen to Bond as Craig departs from the film series.

However, the film’s cinematography is one of its strongest attributes. When making a Bond film, cinematographers should take full advantage of the amazing scenery and action that takes place throughout the filming process. Beautiful landscape shots of Europe’s largest cities, thrilling car chases and action-packed fight scenes show how much thought the cameramen put into filming.

The acting in “Spectre,” while strong in some places, proves to be the rockiest aspect. All of the film’s supporting characters put together strong performances, especially Andrew Scott’s portrayal as the cold-hearted British official Max Denbigh. Léa Seydoux, who plays Bond’s love interest, also shows off her acting skills, and switches through her character’s multitude of feelings extremely well. Acclaimed German actor Christoph Waltz portrays the Bond villain, and his smooth accent, combined with the purely sinister nature of his character, paint the picture for a fantastic antagonist.

Even though the pieces fit for every other character, none of it can make up for the fact that Daniel Craig just isn’t the Bond he used to be. The virtues of time finally caught up with Craig in this film, and this performance shows his missteps. In all of Craig’s previous Bond films, he brought a perfect amount of emotion to a character who typically only displays lust and anger. Yet in “Spectre,” Craig shows little emotion and his portrayal of Bond seems careless and uninterested.

“Spectre” is a great film, but not a great James Bond film. In what is supposedly Daniel Craig’s final hurrah as Bond, nothing stands out like it should. The ending attempts to tie together all four of Craig’s films as the spy, but does so in a way that leaves more questions than answers. Most of the film’s returning characters, including its director, seem somewhat exhausted and void of the emotion they once had. While the film has many positive aspects, such talent and high expectations somewhat fall by the wayside due to a lackluster performance from Daniel Craig.

Spectre: 7.5/10

The Echo • Copyright 2022 • FLEX WordPress Theme by SNOLog in