Saturday, 31 October 2015

Week 41: Spectre

Director: Sam Mendes
Writers:  John Logan Neal Purvis Robert Wade Jez Butterworth et al
Seen:  28th October 2015
Venue: EYE Cinema
Snacks: Popcorn
Mood: Shaken AND stirred

 It is not easy to maintain popularity in anything for over 50 years, but like it or not the Bond film series has done just that. And if they continue to be like Spectre it will be around for many more years to come because very much like Skyfall it is slick, stylish, superbly directed and brilliantly acted.

There have been seven personifications of James Bond since the first of the franchise appeared in 1962. That year the man himself was played by Sean Connery in Dr. No, which was an instant success. It is true to say the franchise has had a few bumpy moments along the way but since 1962 there have been 23 more outings for James Bond. Spectre is the 24th instalment and 007 this time is played effortlessly by Daniel Graig, who has headed 4 films to date. When I saw Bond 23 – Skyfall - I remember thinking it was the best Bond for years if not altogether and now I am asking myself the same about Spectre. So, did Sam Mendes, who also directed Skyfall, surpass what he achieved with 23?

The answer to that question is completely subjective and I’m not going to delve into that debate but I am sure Bond aficionados would enjoy arguing about that over a large number of vodka martinis. For me they are both equally as good but what I can say is, I would be happy if the 25th Bond was led by Mendes and Graig. Whether or not that will happen is unclear, however Graig, recently said in an interview when asked would he do another “I’d rather break this glass and slash my wrists.” Ok Danny boy calm down.

The Bond franchise keeps up with the times as the main premise of this film is about surveillance alluding to that omnipresent debate of big brother versus security. As M, played by Ralph Fiennes states, to the man leading the fight for government to gather more information around the world, “your plan” he says “would give George Orwell nightmares”. It does however, also have the Bond usual’s. The car chase, the villain, played chillingly by Christoph Waltz, the Bond girl, played by Léa Seydoux, and I glad to see the representation of the Bond Girl has moved with the times also, she is now a much stronger character. If I had to say something bad about the 24th Bond, it is a tad too long, nevertheless it is a very entertaining film that ticks all the boxes for a 007 film and some.

Oh fuck it I’ll call it. For me Skyfall was slightly better, for reasons I’ll spare you and instead discuss with my better half and co-blogger, who also really enjoyed Spectre but has yet to see Skyfall, this will be rectified soon.

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