Daniel Craig finishes role as James Bond in Spectre, leaves series on a high note

Jack Wallace

Spectre, the latest edition in the classic saga of James Bond, is a bizarre but oddly-fitting ending to Daniel Craig’s run as the world-renowned spy. Much like the previous Bond movies, the opening act is by far the strongest. We’re treated to a gorgeous shot of Mexico City on the famed Day of the Dead, where Bond is currently tracing a notorious terrorist who intends to bomb a local football stadium. Bond, the ham that he is, manages to completely blow things out of proportion to an awesome scale and causes an international disaster filled with exploding buildings, machine guns and helicopters that can somehow do loop-the-loops. Despite these “minor” complications, Bond gets his man and is pushed down the rabbit hole after snatching away a mysterious ring  with an engraved octopus from his target. Determined to get to the bottom of this and figure out what the ring means, Bond becomes entangled in the dark web of an underground organization dedicated to destroying our suave hero and to committing, you know, crime. This information-hoarding society, known only to few as SPECTRE, successfully plays off of the modern-day hysteria over the NSA and creates a feeling of paranoia throughout the entire film.

However, I can’t help but see the connections between Spectre and the still-quite-fresh Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation. Both spy movies revolve around secret organizations threatening to undermine their heroes with an eery similarity. I’m happy to say, though, that Spectre pulls this off much more eloquently. Spectre is a sharp and smart film that definitely deserves the honor of being a James Bond flick.

Nevertheless, Bond flicks are far from perfect, and that includes Spectre. But first, let’s start with what they got right. For starters, they incorporate all of the classic Bond tropes from classy cars to alcoholic preferences (shaken, not stirred). The action and cinematography are excellent, finding just the right amount of excitement between the horrifically bland The Matrix Revolutions and the over-stuffed Furious 7 in terms of content. Daniel Craig returns to deliver a fantastic performance, as expected. Despite these positives though, Spectre is riddled with questionable moments. Everyone knows that Bond is a ladies’ man. While this new age of Bond is certainly better than the days of Sean Connery and his raging hormones, there wasn’t a single woman in this film that Bond didn’t have romantic relationships with (or at least didn’t think about necking with them). Although it’s an iconic part of Bond, the spy’s line of thinking is almost exactly like that of a caveman: “See girl. Like girl. Need love girrrrrl.” Even though the film does include a relationship in the end that actually matters, I think it’s high time that Bond steers away from his ridiculous sex panther ways of old.

The main villain, Ernst Stavro Blofeld, is quite frankly a bit lackluster. Even though he’s responsible for some pretty gruesome and heart-wrenching scenes, he doesn’t get enough screen time to build up his character. Instead, we’re left with just a typical “bad guy”. In other words, because he’s only given so much backstory, he comes off just as another run-of-the-mill villain. If he had been given just a wee bit more time, he might have legitimately become a great addition to the movie.

Regardless of these errors, Spectre is not a bad product. It’s a fun movie that showcases just how superb Daniel Craig’s acting is. Spectre is, in the best way I can put it, just like Bond: stylish, classy and full of charm.