A fond, if mediocre, farewell to Craig’s Bond

Media critic Erik Jaman reviews “No Time To Die,” directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga

No+Time+To+Die+Promotional+Poster

No Time To Die Promotional Poster

No Time To Die, directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga was a melancholic goodbye to debatably the best James Bond, Daniel Craig.

The film was far from perfect. With a poorly written, generic, and purposeless villain (Rami Malek), the film does not hit the mark as well as Skyfall or Casino Royale.

The film was far from perfect. With a poorly written, generic, and purposeless villain (Rami Malek), the film does not hit the mark as well as Skyfall or Casino Royale.”

— Jaman

The film perfectly navigates the tragedy of Bond’s suppression of his love for Madeleine (Léa Seydoux), a daughter of a previous Spectre member.

While Bond movies are typically known for being sexist, Craig’s relationship with Madeleine shows more complexity and leaves an example for future Bond films.

The ending of this film has been highly debated. Most of Bond’s younger fans loved the daring climax, while the long- time fans were disgusted by such a non Bond-like ending. For me the ending was exactly what this series needed — a dose of humility.

No Time To Die is one of Craig’s best acted Bond movies. He brought humanity to his inhumane character. While Bond is just as clever, witty, and skilled as ever, Craig helps us look into the psyche of a broken individual. I just wish the script allowed him to delve even deeper.

And that seemed to be the common theme of this Bond film. The writing was subpar, and didn’t connect all the smaller characters in a meaningful way to the overarching plot.

The characters in some way served as a distraction. Another huge writing disappointment besides Malek’s was with Ana de Armas’s supposedly newly trained CIA character, Paloma. Armas’s character was amazingly charming and hilarious. And with supposedly only 3 weeks training and such a high level of skill, she has huge potential as a future agent. However, the writers didn’t give her enough run time to justify any reason for her existence.

And the rivalry between James Bond and his new replacement, also given the number “007,” was a great touch of motivation for the legendary spy.

BUT IT DIDN’T GO FAR ENOUGH. It didn’t push the plot forward. Sure it changed Bond a tiny bit, but not enough. It was just an extra detail in this overly complicated plot.

For all the action junkies, No Time To Die provides eye widening stunts, nerve racking encounters, and absolutely epic action scenes. James Bond fans would happen to hear that the iconic grey Aston Martin returns in an epic standoff that has to be one of the best car fighting scenes in the franchise.

Finally for the overly long opening credits montage, Billie Elish does a fantastic job with her original song: “No Time To Die”. It was actually killer. Probably my favorite outside of Adele’s classic, “Skyfall”.

Overall: 3.25/5
Story: 2/5
Performances: 4/5
Visuals: 4/5
Soul: 3/5

SCALE

1 – Painful to watch

1.5 – Terrible

2 – Not Good

2.5 – Alright

3 – Good

3.5 – Great

4 – Awesome

4.5 – I love it!

5 – The best