Spectre: Reappraised, Reassessed

17891012

Comments

  • NickTwentyTwoNickTwentyTwo Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Posts: 7,258
    Creasy47 wrote: »
    It's very disappointing we didn't get a single Bond film over here for the anniversary. Their loss.

    Over here, being, in Cuba with Natalya?

    You don’t care you have Natalya.
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 37,945
    Creasy47 wrote: »
    It's very disappointing we didn't get a single Bond film over here for the anniversary. Their loss.

    Over here, being, in Cuba with Natalya?

    You don’t care you have Natalya.

    I really don't care about much else when that little tidbit is considered.
  • cwl007cwl007 England
    Posts: 606
    Something strange happened 'tother night.
    I watched Spectre, through choice may I add, before this weekend's cinema trip to see NTTD. And I quite enjoyed it!
    Space and years away from it has obviously allowed me to be less frustrated/board by parts of it and I could just let them go. There were several sequences I enjoyed more than I remembered. Yes it's flawed creatively in places with some bonkers decisions made, BUT I enjoyed it. NTTD has definitely helped elevate it too I think.
    (As a continuation of some of the above comments on CR. As much as I love that film I do find one sequence really boring. It's from when Bond enters the Bodyworks exhibition to the end of the airport scene, which is strange because it's meant to be an exciting action sequence.)
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    edited October 1 Posts: 1,544
    Yeah, the CR airport scene is like the airplane chase in Spectre, where on paper it should all be really exciting, but it just isn't. What the Spectre chase at least has going for it is that the spectacle is pretty novel, whereas the only thing I can ever remember about the Miami airport is the bit where the low-flying plane blasts the two security/police cars away. That bit is cool.
  • echoecho 007 in New York
    Posts: 5,157
    I love the CR airport chase, and the callback to Fleming.
  • QBranchQBranch Always have an escape plan. Mine is watching James Bond films.
    Posts: 12,826
    I love the Miami sequence too. The scale model Skyfleet prototype and hangar was impressive.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    edited October 1 Posts: 21,707
    QBranch wrote: »
    I love the Miami sequence too. The scale model Skyfleet prototype and hangar was impressive.

    Also, I think Arnold gives us one of his very best action sequences. It builds and keeps building; it picks up momentum, orchestral weight and tension. I also think it's awesome to see Bond commit to stopping the terrorist. Craig is on fire in this sequence.
  • CraigMooreOHMSSCraigMooreOHMSS Dublin, Ireland
    Posts: 7,444
    Yeah, I always enjoyed it too.
  • VenutiusVenutius Yorkshire
    Posts: 1,700
    I have skipped it a few times, tbh!
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    edited October 1 Posts: 21,707
    Venutius wrote: »
    I have skipped it a few times, tbh!

    Why would you watch a film with scenes skipped? I don't get that. Do you skip pages when reading a book? Do you fast-forward sections of a song you're listening to? Do you partially cover your eyes when looking at a painting? No offence but that's just something I cannot understand. I used to fast-forward through the OT of the Bonds when I watched them on video. Then I turned 10 and decided that wasn't how one watches and appreciates the art of filmmaking. I've been watching films from the first to the last second since.
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    Posts: 1,544
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Venutius wrote: »
    I have skipped it a few times, tbh!

    Why would you watch a film with scenes skipped? I don't get that. Do you skip pages when reading a book? Do you fast-forward sections of a song you're listening to? Do you partially cover your eyes when looking at a painting? No offence but that's just something I cannot understand. I used to fast-forward through the OT of the Bonds when I watched them on video. Then I turned 10 and decided that wasn't how one watches and appreciates the art of filmmaking. I've been watching films from the first to the last second since.

    A guy told me a couple weeks ago that he watches most movies at like 1.3x speed to get through them faster. Bananas.
  • Posts: 5,219
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Venutius wrote: »
    I have skipped it a few times, tbh!

    Why would you watch a film with scenes skipped? I don't get that. Do you skip pages when reading a book? Do you fast-forward sections of a song you're listening to? Do you partially cover your eyes when looking at a painting? No offence but that's just something I cannot understand. I used to fast-forward through the OT of the Bonds when I watched them on video. Then I turned 10 and decided that wasn't how one watches and appreciates the art of filmmaking. I've been watching films from the first to the last second since.

    A guy told me a couple weeks ago that he watches most movies at like 1.3x speed to get through them faster. Bananas.

    He must love the old silent movies then?! 🤣
  • LeonardPineLeonardPine The Bar on the Beach
    Posts: 3,736
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Venutius wrote: »
    I have skipped it a few times, tbh!

    Why would you watch a film with scenes skipped? I don't get that. Do you skip pages when reading a book? Do you fast-forward sections of a song you're listening to? Do you partially cover your eyes when looking at a painting? No offence but that's just something I cannot understand. I used to fast-forward through the OT of the Bonds when I watched them on video. Then I turned 10 and decided that wasn't how one watches and appreciates the art of filmmaking. I've been watching films from the first to the last second since.

    I skip the Gondola scene in MR because I find it too stupid for words. It's actually a nice edit because it goes from Bond talking to Holly to Bond investigating the glass factory that same evening. A nice smooth cut!

    Perhaps what scenes we skip in the Bond films would be an interesting discussion...
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython Omaha, NE
    Posts: 6,696
    I can’t understand skipping the gondola scene, it’s a highlight!
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 21,707
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Venutius wrote: »
    I have skipped it a few times, tbh!

    Why would you watch a film with scenes skipped? I don't get that. Do you skip pages when reading a book? Do you fast-forward sections of a song you're listening to? Do you partially cover your eyes when looking at a painting? No offence but that's just something I cannot understand. I used to fast-forward through the OT of the Bonds when I watched them on video. Then I turned 10 and decided that wasn't how one watches and appreciates the art of filmmaking. I've been watching films from the first to the last second since.

    A guy told me a couple weeks ago that he watches most movies at like 1.3x speed to get through them faster. Bananas.

    What? Why?? Why would anyone in their right mind do something like that?
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Venutius wrote: »
    I have skipped it a few times, tbh!

    Why would you watch a film with scenes skipped? I don't get that. Do you skip pages when reading a book? Do you fast-forward sections of a song you're listening to? Do you partially cover your eyes when looking at a painting? No offence but that's just something I cannot understand. I used to fast-forward through the OT of the Bonds when I watched them on video. Then I turned 10 and decided that wasn't how one watches and appreciates the art of filmmaking. I've been watching films from the first to the last second since.

    I skip the Gondola scene in MR because I find it too stupid for words. It's actually a nice edit because it goes from Bond talking to Holly to Bond investigating the glass factory that same evening. A nice smooth cut!

    Perhaps what scenes we skip in the Bond films would be an interesting discussion...

    It would be an interesting discussion, although I hope that not too many folks skip scenes in Bond films. It's blasphemy! :-L
  • NickTwentyTwoNickTwentyTwo Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Posts: 7,258
    Yeah, the CR airport scene is like the airplane chase in Spectre, where on paper it should all be really exciting, but it just isn't. What the Spectre chase at least has going for it is that the spectacle is pretty novel, whereas the only thing I can ever remember about the Miami airport is the bit where the low-flying plane blasts the two security/police cars away. That bit is cool.

    I love the bit in the Spectre plane section when it's flying upwards and the truck explodes on the ground in the background, fantastic bit of cinematography. Otherwise I could take it or leave it, I do like Hinx' gun blowing holes in the side of the plane, and it flying out of the woodshed doesn't offend me as much as it seems to offend other people.
  • ThunderfingerThunderfinger Das Boot Hill
    Posts: 45,420
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Venutius wrote: »
    I have skipped it a few times, tbh!

    Why would you watch a film with scenes skipped? I don't get that. Do you skip pages when reading a book? Do you fast-forward sections of a song you're listening to? Do you partially cover your eyes when looking at a painting? No offence but that's just something I cannot understand. I used to fast-forward through the OT of the Bonds when I watched them on video. Then I turned 10 and decided that wasn't how one watches and appreciates the art of filmmaking. I've been watching films from the first to the last second since.

    A guy told me a couple weeks ago that he watches most movies at like 1.3x speed to get through them faster. Bananas.

    Does he listen to music the same way? Does he chew his food? How does he make love?
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 10,987
    *Yaaawn* Nothing to see here.

    4b5f309dd2df051083f72417c04900b4d20cb1a4.gifv
    mLz2wp.gif
    IllfatedIckyCowbird-max-1mb.gif
    cr-1.gif

    200.gif
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython Omaha, NE
    Posts: 6,696
    I wouldn’t have cut out the Miami sequence, I would have cut out everything up to Bond being debriefed about the casino job. That whole first section has absolutely nothing to do with the book.
  • NickTwentyTwoNickTwentyTwo Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Posts: 7,258
    I wouldn’t have cut out the Miami sequence, I would have cut out everything up to Bond being debriefed about the casino job. That whole first section has absolutely nothing to do with the book.

    I’m not bothered by deviations from the book. It isn’t the book, it’s a movie. And as far as Bond adaptions go, CR is pretty damn close.
  • DenbighDenbigh UK
    edited October 1 Posts: 5,201
    Honestly I personally love everything about Casino Royale. From a writing perspective, I thought it was really clever how they built upon what was in the book to create something that still felt like a classic James Bond film, while updating it within the world of the reboot. I think if they had just tried to extend the novel with only the events at Casino Royale, we would've gotten a weaker film, with the pace slowing down significantly.
  • LeonardPineLeonardPine The Bar on the Beach
    Posts: 3,736
    *Yaaawn* Nothing to see here.

    4b5f309dd2df051083f72417c04900b4d20cb1a4.gifv
    mLz2wp.gif
    IllfatedIckyCowbird-max-1mb.gif
    cr-1.gif

    200.gif

    That entire sequence is worth it for Craig's little smile when the terrorist is blown up...
  • CraigMooreOHMSSCraigMooreOHMSS Dublin, Ireland
    Posts: 7,444
    That entire sequence is worth it for Craig's little smile when the terrorist is blown up...

    That moment perfectly captured why Craig's Bond in the first two films was so refreshing for me. That's a killer smile, right there. Fantastic.
  • slide_99slide_99 USA
    edited October 1 Posts: 496
    I mildly enjoyed it in theaters and considered it to be superior to Skyfall, since it felt more like a proper Bond movie and not a Dark Knight ripoff. I also preferred Craig's performance in it to his in Skyfall, which I felt was far too muted, nearly to the point of blending into every scene.

    After one or two subsequent viewings, I now rank it dead last, near-unwatchable. It's a very rickety ship on a very long journey that goes nowhere. Craig doesn't seem comfortable in the role, but maybe that's just the tiny suits he's wearing. Worse, he's forced into a rote romance with Seydoux. He did well with all the previous girls, so the fact that he has no chemistry with the actress who's playing his suppose "true love' only makes it worse.

    Like Skyfall, Spectre is directed in such a way that scenes are twice as long as they need to be. The opening sequence, for example, didn't need a five-minute tracking shot following Bond as he goes from point A to point B. Why not just open with him right on the roof setting up his sniping position?

    Also like Skyfall, overly-dramatic lighting and camera setups are used as cover for scenes that just aren't interesting from a character or story perspective. The muddy color palette and lifeless cinematography from Hote van Hoytema doesn't help things. This is the first movie I've seen where Rome looks dull.

    Enough has been said about Waltz's take on Blofeld. That's all it is: a take. He doesn't seem like the character at all. Bautista also stands out from his miscasting. Hinx needed to be someone less cartoonish. They should have gone "Locque" instead of "Jaws."

    The opening action sequence is very good, but falls short of being one of the best. The train fight is fun but derivative, an ends on a lame note. The car chase is rather dull, and the plane chase probably looked good on paper but doesn't work at all on camera.

    What's really mind-boggling is how the filmmakers had a perfectly good set piece with the crater base in Morocco but opted to tack on a boring finale set in an empty building in London. Spectre could have been saved by a spectacular finale, maybe by having special forces fight Spectre in an all-out battle like in the old movies.

    Too many bad decisions when into this one, and the first was bringing back Logan and Mendes.
  • QBranchQBranch Always have an escape plan. Mine is watching James Bond films.
    Posts: 12,826
    I really like when the fuel truck and pushback collide and Bond has to jump off, narrowly avoiding getting run over, by a hair. A blond hair. The pushback does a 180, which I would think is difficult to achieve in one of those tugs.
    And I don't skip. I strut.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython Omaha, NE
    Posts: 6,696
    I wouldn’t have cut out the Miami sequence, I would have cut out everything up to Bond being debriefed about the casino job. That whole first section has absolutely nothing to do with the book.

    I’m not bothered by deviations from the book. It isn’t the book, it’s a movie. And as far as Bond adaptions go, CR is pretty damn close.

    CR is a relatively tight book, and I wanted the movie to reflect that, starting with the debriefing. You could keep the PTS as it is as that can set the mood for the film.

    As it is, CR feels like two different films slammed together, and because of that it feels bloated.
  • NickTwentyTwoNickTwentyTwo Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Posts: 7,258
    That's fair, I do feel a sense of bloat regarding CR, but mostly with the end.

    The PTS of Casino Royale is one of the franchise-best, IMO. Sets the mood wonderfully like you said, contextualizes the gunbarrel as his first kill to become a 00... absolutely heart pumping.
  • DenbighDenbigh UK
    edited October 2 Posts: 5,201
    As I stated above, I feel if they had just tried to extend the novel with only the events at Casino Royale, we would've gotten a weaker film, with the pace slowing down significantly.

    The first half of the film allows us to properly get to know where Bond is at before he's thrust into his development with Vesper, contextualises her dialogue about what kind of man he is on the train and at dinner once he's won, and we're aware of all that in his character because of everything we've seen so far. It wouldn't be enough for us to just hear from her and base what she's said on what we know of James Bond because this is a reboot - a fresh start. Not to mention show don't tell. We can discuss and understand it from other characters perspective because we've seen it for ourselves.

    And it goes without saying that it allows us to follow the plot and understand Le Chiffre's character and motive from the beginning, and weaves Bond's involvement into it. The involvement of Dimitrios, Alex and Solange, gives us more villains and Bond girls, which is always welcome, especially with Solange as that also a perfect setup for what follows with our characters and narrative:

    "I would ask you if you could remain emotionally detached, but that's not your problem, is it, Bond?"
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython Omaha, NE
    edited October 2 Posts: 6,696
    I wouldn’t have extended anything once they’re at Casino Royale. My goal would be to make the film be at least under two hours. About the same length as Connery’s first three films.

    And while the film we got is closer to the novel than many other adaptations, I still feel it’s not faithful enough as I would have liked. There’s so much good stuff in the book that gets altered or eliminated altogether. I don’t like that Felix’s role is cut down. In the novel he’s assigned to meet up with him from the get go, in the film Bond doesn’t even know who Felix is until he’s prevented from making an attempt at Le Chiffre’s life. The stuff implicating Mathis as being friends with Le Chiffre was unnecessary and IMO was just bad treatment of the character, seeing him get tasered and dragged out of frame. The two men in straw hats would have been an a fun and eerily tense scene.

    And I’ve said this on the CR thread, making Bond a novice that’s rough around the edges and needs to learn more life lessons is kind of dumb considering Daniel Craig was a 38 year old adult. I would buy it more if they went with a younger actor in his 20s as the originally planned. But once they cast Craig in the part, they should have dumped that whole narrative altogether and just kept his Bond as a 00 veteran.
  • ProfJoeButcherProfJoeButcher Bless your heart
    edited October 2 Posts: 1,544
    Denbigh wrote: »
    Not to mention show don't tell. We can discuss and understand it from other characters perspective because we've seen it for ourselves.

    Well, then it's show and tell, because Casino Royale spends a lot of time showing us characters talking about what kind of a guy James Bond is. Bond and Vesper explain each other's backstories and motivations in highly contrived monologues, and M explains Vesper's reasons for suicide despite not knowing her. Romantic feelings are spoken out loud, Attack of the Clones-style, and M and Bond talk all about where his mind is at after he is filmed murdering a guy at an embassy and follows up by breaking into M's house and is not fired (!).

    At best it's redundant exposition, but sometimes it's not even accurate. The quote you posted, 'I would ask you if you could remain emotionally detached, but that's not your problem, is it, Bond? is a good example: in that very scene, Bond does not appear to be emotionally detached from Solange's death. He appears to be pretending to be emotionally detached. And Bond's mania for murdering the bombmaker suggests a sort of emotional attachment for sure. (Emotional attachment...more Attack of the Clones!)

    I think if they're comfortable explaining themes out loud, they indeed should have followed @MakeshiftPython's route and adapted the novel more directly. They could have had Bond's conversations with Mathis after the torture as part of the movie, instead of having Le Chiffre twirl his mousatche at the camera and implicate Mathis as a villain (and never resolve it).

    Spectre, in contrast, actually does show and not tell. I imagine Martin Campbell's Spectre would have had at least one lengthy conversation where Bond talks about how much he actually loved Judi's M and doesn't entirely trust the new guy. Spectre just shows it. Madeleine is clearly a perfect match for Bond in her general demeanor, traumatic background, fearlessness, and even the way she shuts down questions she doesn't want to hear. But they don't tell you with conversations about armor and whatever else. (Admittedly, this didn't land for a lot of people--maybe it is better to tell people some things three or four times!) Instead of using their conversation time to state obvious things, they talk about some new things: why can't Bond quit? What would happen if he did? It's a great talk, and a less overly-written exchange than Craig's other big train conversation, and we can see Madeleine is very keen on Bond and is working on him.

    We see how Bond has matured without him talking about it. Oberhauser is a brief shock, but he moves forward and leaves Blofeld to be the only one obsessed with the past. Same when he discovers the interrogation tape. He considers it a moment and moves on.

    In the cinema, I loved Casino Royale, and grew to appreciate it (significantly) less over the years. Following DAD, it was admittedly refreshing in a way to see that Bond could be reimagined as a generic action film with a lot of melodrama. But 16 years later, DAD is obviously no longer some emergency that needs to be addressed, fixed, or reversed, and so for me, CR is just a waste of a good novel.

    Spectre was a mid-table Bond for me on first viewing--I probably liked it less than most people here did the first time--but as the general consensus has trended toward 'everything about Spectre is as bad as it could have possibly been', I've just come to really appreciate its unique atmosphere, its classic feel, and its respect for the audience. And if you've ever seen one of my irritating comments before, it's my favorite. That's sort of odd, too, because I tend to view the 'authentic' Bond films as something that happened from 1962-1989, and everything that came after is a nice bonus. But Spectre broke through for me.

Sign In or Register to comment.