Daniel Craig, in his fourth attempt, has sensationally nailed the role of “James Bond”; not the lothario like Sean Connery, Roger Moore, Pierce Brosnan or even David Niven; directed by Sam Mendes, Craig’s Bond is toughness packaged in a GQ facade, nary a wrinkle appears in his Armani suit after explosives, disintegrating buildings, helicopter headaches test the mettle of the man and his wardrobe; there’s a depth, a genuine gene, dare I say kindness, lurking beneath the surface of this English super hero. He is likeable, approachable, more than a glib, Teflon savior, who savors his martinis.
As expected, the action breaks the titillation charts; gorgeous landscapes, backdrops for jaw-dropping car, plane, train episodes, Bond always the victor, the Houdini of the unscathed, slayer of the demonic; the core of all Bond movies is the eponymous Devil, a warped genius, whose goal is the obliteration of the “norm”; control, dominance over what is left in the wake of his apocalypse. “Spectre” is enhanced by the vile, malevolent “Blofeld” (deliciously depicted by the pinnacle of diabolical, Christoph Waltz) head of the fiendish cabal, with a lurid connection to Bond’s past.
In the fifty –year -history of the James Bond movies women have morphed from nubile, pneumatic, devious protagonists ( “Honey Ryder”, “Pussy Galore”, “Jill Masterson”), to women of substance; forces in the world of politics, commerce, education, art, science; “Spectre’s’” , “Dr. Madeleine Swann” (lithesome, Lea Seydoux, “Blue is the Warmest Color”) is Bond’s intellectual equivalent, more that an object of lust, she’s tempts with knowledge, skilled marksmanship; alluringly attired, camouflaging combustibility behind a diminutive frame.
“Spectre” is everything you desire from an iconic Bond movie: slickly, fetchingly filmed and crafted, gritty scenario, “beauty besting the beast”; luxury of knowing our man will live to triumph iniquity after iniquity.
THREE & 1/2 STARS!!!