Time, death, past and future are deep and recurring themes in this 25th Bond film. This, of course, marks the end of the Daniel Craig era.
However, No Time To Die – with no less than four screenwriters. Including the director himself (Fukunaga the real detective), Old Bond’s hand. And the long-awaited addition by Phoebe Waller-Bridge.
It is too long, too complicated, and too long. Similar to Un -Make closeness. Some of the reluctance to end early is believed. To be related to the burden of saying goodbye. To actor-turned-heroes who made World War II for the 21st and wearing the same up their sleeves.
Craig is not only bruised but also sore.
He’s not just passionate about muscles. He was delighted with the frown that years of watching unspeakable horror had left on his face. And what is this face – this crown of ties, more than the body.
Which is beautifully decorated in various ways from shorts to tight tuxedos. Some eyes ache within you, some wrinkles cause pain, some smiles warm your heart, some sparks can only resist, and some tears flow easily.
While we’re still choking on a pandemic that may or may not be born in a lab. The story hinges on fake DNA being stolen from “unofficial” British government facilities.
The great evil of this project (albeit science-intensive) is astonishingly deafening in its tone. Fiennes M. even tried to explain that “it was never intended. As a weapon of mass destruction”. Do we want to go there?
The geopolitics of film is not only considered here. While Britain retains its relevance in what is sadly called AUCUS. Britain’s central role in saving the world. More than anything else, is hopeless.
And while Russia is expanding its influence, the film’s portrayal of Japan and Cuba (and the people there) as places on the axis of crime, but irrelevant to its demise, is the kind of scrutiny that better films no longer provide.
While Fleabag’s Waller-Bridge contribution is meant to elevate Bond to a more feminist standard:
Women remain just as central, but partly in the bigger picture. Seydou returns as Madeleine Swan but finds himself in an almost angry household. The most significant leap in the film is the transformation of the new 007 into a woman and black.
But Lynch preferred the same thing, wearing an awkward trouser suit. His hands in his pockets, trying to fill this man’s shoes. The charismatic Aramas (similar to Craig in Knives Out) features Cuban combat. In a dangling neckline, slit-thigh dress, and stilettos, but only lets you focus on that dazzling smile. There’s nothing to resist, not even Bond’s thirst for love (and he struggles here).
And then there’s the useless villain – Malek with the disfigured face and kimono robe who fucks him; and short waltzes similar to Hannibal Lecter. One of them uses the other to kill the DNA world. Sometimes it’s like this, and then it’s different. Whenever Malek’s Lustifer tries to explain to Safin.
He only exacerbates the incoherence of the idea.
Plus the final scene, an island with long, long corridors, mute maids repelling themselves in a pool of poisoned water, remote world data from utterly ridiculous Russian scientists, and so on. Unfortunately, after a near-perfect crash in a foggy forest and some spectacular car chases, the film gets there, primarily through Italy’s old town.
Then there’s Craig. When the dust settles (and there’s plenty of dust to lay eggs). When it’s time for the sun to set (she’s beautiful) when it’s time to call (and she has to do that often). Her Bond will stand tall and strong, small and defenceless; omniscient, too insecure – you can call him James, just James.