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You both make great points on Bond not having a relationship with this M and M being a bit of fool commissioning the weapon, being shortsighted to see that it wouldn't fall into the enemies hands.
I hadn't thought about either of them
For me the jokes fell a bit flat, and I think it was because of were they came in the film. I was still processing Felix's death and then we have Bond cracking wise at M less than 5 minutes later. That shift in tone felt quite jarring during this scene
Spot on with this. There were many times when the script veered from what we know Bond to be, into something else. His interaction with M was off, like you mentioned above, and also the confrontation scenes with Blofeld and Safin.
The Blofeld scene suddenly sees Bond being all overtly sarcastic, to the point where I was literally thinking `who is this character?'
And the Safin scene, when Bond starts saying `I'm sorry, I'm sorry...' It just felt weird, odd. This was definitely not the Fleming Bond, or even the cinematic Bond that we've grown up with.
It was straying back into TWINE soap opera territory again, with Brosnan's ham acting `he knew where to hurt me, knew about my shoulder!' etc.
Appreciated, @Univex - good to see you alive & kicking and still on the MI6comm's board after all these years 😎
To your Bond26 point - a fresh scribe is most definitely needed going forward, surely P&W have had their run now and it's time to let a younger writer take over - Broccoli and M.G Wilson have stood by their regulars but there is such a thing as getting too comfy with your established creative team...
You can take 007 into the post 'Mee-too' and BLM world without disowning Fleming's legacy and the heightened universe he created.
I'd go so far as to say that the next choice of WRITER is going to be more pivotal than the next actor to portray Bond....
Indeed, my friend. More than anything else, for the next actor to be accepted he’ll need a brilliantly written script, a tight piece. Just imagine if DC had started with QOS and not CR. The writing is key to this cinematic product as it was on its origin. Hey, if they want, I’d be more than happy to put my new novel in the proverbial desk drawer to pen a new 007 entry ;) Seriously now, shouldn’t we start a thread about possible writers, as we have one for directors and one for actors? I’m all for it.
I think it's that and also that this is a bioweapon, and those are against every rule - we've seen Mallory bend a rule but not like that, they're immoral. And the UK signed the Biological Weapons Convention back in the 70s: we just don't do it (Or does it having little robots in it mean it's technically not a bioweapon?)
Ah okay, that's interesting- I didn't feel that on my first watch, I'll look out for it the next time. I thought the moment where Felix is mentioned and M stays honourable enough to break off his attack on Bond and pay homage to Leiter was a nice moment.
Well he's mostly just tricking Safin there, but quite neatly it wrong foots the audience because we think his becoming a father has somehow weakened him. I quite liked that.
I like to be surprised by Bond sometimes.
Fleming himself may have gone there at some point had he lived long enough; we'll never know. But the filmmakers, after 20-something films of playing safely within the accepted boundaries, have now dared to think outside the box and explore a part of the character we haven't seen before. Bond behaving differently than we're used to may simply parallel where he's at in his life. He's older, he's been through a lot. His oddities in this film would definitely have been out of place in QOS. But are they so strange in this movie with this unprecedented setting? I'm not sure...
In the end, I think Daniel Craig wanted to do more than "play" James Bond, an abstraction of a human being; I think he wanted to shape Bond, to organically mould Bond, a man who evolves in life, as do we all. He didn't want a Bond who, like Roger's, looked older in AVTAK than he was in LALD but was still, essentially, the same man. And this is something Fleming had been playing with too. The Bond he paints in The Man With The Golden Gun is quite different from the Bond we read about in Moonraker. And already in Casino Royale does Bond contemplate the ambiguities that come with "good" or "evil", "right" or "wrong". Slowly, even Fleming's Bond changes over time. Age, and several scars, do that to any man.
Perhaps the Bond of NTTD is not the version of "Old Man Bond" some wanted, but it is a version, and I for one find this Bond more than acceptable, plausible and likeable. There's enough of that young Bond still there, and the more cynical, sometimes less patient Bond adds a layer that I haven't seen before either, but I fail to see why it should be a problematic one. This Bond works for me in this movie, but I can understand why he doesn't work for others.
In the end, I accept this because it's this one movie, the first in a series of 25 (!), to push the boundaries. 96% of all Bond in the EON series is playing things more or less safe. I'll happily give them the 4% of NTTD. I'm sure they won't make a habit of it.
Exactly. Safin at the moment is threatening the little girl and Craig Bond takes that as an opportunity to act like a terrified father begging for mercy when he was really just an act.
Are we to say it’s out of character for Bond to even do something like that?
I think had I not hated the ending so much, and it ended how I wanted it to instead, I would probably overlook all these other things that were minor irritations. I would let them slip.
But in light of my disappointment with the overall film (far more than any other Craig film), these minor faults become major sticking points for me.
I think Fleming's old man Bond characterisation was spot on with the scenes in Jamaica. It just felt right, the way Craig played it. But after that there were just too many jarring scenes for me, that took me out of the movie.
I hadn't felt this way since Brozza's reign, as Craig's performance throughout the rest of his films has been fairly consistent on to how I expect Bond to behave.
The soap-ish elements of TWINE were far better-handled- or at least not as heavy-handed- than the stuff we've gotten in the Craig. At least TWINE's plot didn't hinge on them. With the way these movies were going, I half-expected Bond turn out to be Q's father, M's nephew, Madeline's uncle, and the absentee father of all the henchmen trying to kill him.
I just don't think it was necessary to have this in a Bond movie. I appreciate for others, it was a refreshing change to see this new facet of Bond, a different side, but unfortunately it's not for me. I want Bond as a cold killer, like he is in LTK or CR.
It all depends on what you're reading then...
He still is during that moment where he fakes begging. Once he grabs a hold of his hidden PPK he immediately switches it off and proceeds to swiftly kill all the guards. The only thing he didn’t anticipate was that Safin had an escape mechanism.
Yes, but it doesn't feel like Bond to me beforehand. Think Dalton in LTK, remaining silent as Sanchez questions him before throwing him onto the conveyer belt. That felt like a Fleming moment leaping straight from the pages for me, even though it never happened in the books.
I just couldn't imagine Dalton's Bond playing that Safin scene the same way Craig did, and I know this is down to the script and not the actors playing it. Maibaum really `got' Fleming, whereas I have never felt that with P&W.
Safin throws the pillow into the air and his guards fire at it. I thought that was a really sinister move on his part, but then they are all totally unaffected by it and have a long discussion.
In reality they would all be experiencing the disorientation that Bond did after the bomb went off at the beginning. Not to mention poor Mathilde growing up with permanent hearing damage.
Handguns are extremely and painfully loud but rifles like the ones his guards have are almost incomprehensibly loud when when fired indoors. There's a concussive force you feel in your chest if your are close to one discharging. It wasn't until I'd fired one that I realized how unrealistic these scenes always are. You really have no idea until you've been at an indoor range. Even with good ear protection it's extremely loud.
He coldly kills everyone in the room at that point..?
I could absolutely imagine Fleming's Bond feigning being weak before launching an attack at the enemy. I think the idea of him shooting everyone in the room is actually the least Fleming-y thing! The book Bond didn't really go in that sort of thing, plus he'd have probably got out that situation by pure luck as he usually did, with a chandelier happening to fall on one of the guys or something :D
At least he didn't break into M's house this time!
Hahaha very true mate
A few times Daniel Craig’s Bond has been almost a bit too violent and gritty from my pov, but overall his performance in the role has really won me over. I like that for Craig’s five movies we’ve gotten four different approaches from four different directors—Martin Campbell, Marc Forster, Sam Mendes, and now Cary Fukunaga. I hope that Eon continues to choose directors who put their own flair into future Bond movies—while still staying true to Bond.
I think Cary Fukunaga did an outstanding job directing this movie. I enjoyed how it did so many things from classic Bond movies—the bad guy’s HQ on an island, exotic locations beautifully filmed, action galore, absurd technologies (“Q—hack into Blofeld’s bionic eye” lol), etc.—while also forging new ground.
Cinematographer Linus Sandgren brings visual style to NTTD that’s almost to the level of what Roger Deakins brought to Skyfall.
But I never want them to kill Bond again. Ever. For this one time I think they did a very good job of it, and so it’s the exception that proves the rule. NTTD is a very good emotional rollercoaster from my pov, and so I can forgive them doing this just this once.
Composer Hans Zimmer blends his own music with John Barry’s quite effectively.
I’m apparently one of the few who feels that the chemistry between Bond and Swann is good. I think Léa Seydoux is strong in her role.
Ana de Armas is great as Paloma. And I also enjoyed Lashana Lynch’s performance. Personally I’d like to see a side movie featuring the two of them, but I realize that’s unlikely.
And Raimi Malek is effectively creepy as Safin.
At my first viewing I questioned whether M would approve the Heracles project, since it seemed out of character. But then I wondered how much I really knew about this M anyway? And even good officials sometimes approve things that turn out very badly (drones that kill civilians, etc.). And the CIA was portrayed as being filled with seemingly quite a few bad people in Quantum. Anyway, I feel that the conflict between Bond and M ultimately worked for me better the second time around. NTTD dials most things up to a 10, and so it heightened the tragedy by making it that Bond was in part sacrificing himself for M’s mistakes.
But I agree with those who say that M needs to be out of a job for this. But I would like them to keep the rest of the MI6 team for the next movie, if possible.
One of the moving moments for me in the film was when Bond says quietly to Nomi, after she offers to help, “Thanks 007.” Perhaps it’s just me, but that’s a performance right there when I was brought to an emotional moment by Daniel Craig saying just that. Throughout his performance is top of the mark. For me, he’s deepened not just his 5-movie tenure, but the whole series with his final Bond.
No Time To Die is now my favorite of all the Bond movies.
I’m also looking forward to a new Bond in four years or so. I’m optimistic they’ll get the casting right somehow. I’ve liked all of the Bonds so far, even though they all are so different.
And having just purchased the 24 blu-ray Bond set on sale, I’m now going to try to do a reverse order watch of all of them.
Yes, not all of Craig's actions are out of kilter. I just felt certain scenes were, including the one leading up to this moment. The way he acted, just didn't strike me as the kind of thing Fleming's Bond would do. Neither did the confrontation with Blofeld, or his bickering interactions with M.
The quieter moments with his daughter, peeling an apple for example, funnily enough I had no issues with, as this seemed very in line with Fleming, as much as I can imagine Fleming would write Bond in such a moment.
Likewise, pretty much all the scenes in Jamaica felt very Fleming.
As I say, feigning weakness felt a lot like something Fleming's Bond would do to me, I don't feel like that was alien to him.
The interaction with M isn't a situation we've seen in the novels, where Bond is no longer an officer and doesn't treat M as his superior (apart from when he tries to kill him in TMWTGG of course! :) ). He still seemed like Bond to me though.
(Safin throws the pillow, henchmen fire at it)
Safin: You made me do this.
Bond: What?! I can't hear you!
Safin: You made me do this! If you leave my baby alone, I'll leave your baby alone!
Bond: Babylon?! We're in Japan. Or Russia. I'm not sure.
Safin: Who's Roger?!
Bond: Ah, forget it.
First time out I really hated the ending. It angered and upset me
That said this film improves with every watch. I don’t think it drags at any point and frankly that first hour is probably up there with the greatest entertainment in the franchise.
- Matera is my favourite bond location for decades
- Jamaica is fab too
- Bond drinks a lot but doesn’t name check his drinks which I always enjoy
- I actually think safin is ok. And the garden scene is good.
- Can’t quite work out how or why primo switched allegiance, or who valdo is working for and why. So safin knows spectre are coming phones valdo who helps primo who is working for spectre but the valdo isn’t but pretends to then he poisons everyone without primo knowing. Then next time we see primo he now works for safin. Right? Maybe it was when he met Logan ash.
I would give it a solid 8/10
I expect the next to carve a different path. I think we’re due a change in direction. What that will be I don’t know. Maybe bond as a commander in the navy. Maybe bond losing his virginity to a prostitute (doubt it).
Primo started as a Spectre henchman...he was working for Spectre in Matera, during the MI6 secret bioweapon lab break in, and in Cuba. Problem was, after Cuba, he had no one to work for and became a hired gun. Following that, Primo met Ash and was recruited to Safin's team, as seen thru the bionic eye.
Valdo was working for Safin from the get go. Safin calls Valdo when Spectre breaks into the lab, as to give Valdo his orders on how to act when Spectre asks for the Heracles project. Safin says something like, "Spectre thinks they need you" or whatever, so he gets kidnapped and "works for" Spectre, all the while actually doing Safin's bidding.
I do love that moment, but for me the scene where he first arrives at Madeleine's home and has to contend with the fact that she killed Blofeld, his feelings for her, his regret, all at once, is masterful and honestly the scene that puts me over the top re: my belief that he deserves an Oscar nomination for this film.
I also love the way he delivers his "okay" after Madeleine doubles down on Mathilde not being his. I don't really understand the widespread reaction of "why did Madeleine lie to him here?" He knows in that moment, we know with him, but this is James Bond we're talking about. Think of the life he lives, and think of how he's been absent from this child's life for the entirety of it and how he broke it off with Madeleine. I think it's very realistic for Madeleine's first instinct to be locking Bond out of that part of her life.
Yes, that "okay" is heartbreaking for both of them.
And the other moment you mentioned is also powerful.
I agree that Daniel Craig should be nominated for an Oscar for this performance.
I like this “okay” moment too. Madeleine was being territorial, not lying. Bond knew that. You can tell from his inflection. Nice moment too as we’ve seen Bond spend the past hour and half kicking ass in Cuba, yelling at Valdo, and mouthing off to Mallory, but there with Madeleine, he’s clearly vulnerable and emotionally on the back foot. The inflection in the “okay” said it all. Craig was so good.