My Rating: 4 stars
Now, this was the kind of holiday blockbuster I’d been looking for. Brooding men seducing sexy ladies, beautiful cars, guns, explosives, evil super-villains. This movie has all the elements of a classic Bond movie. And, I do enjoy Daniel Craig as Bond. Bond, is supposed to be a super-skilled, killing machine, who is also irresistibly sexy. And, not all the actors who have played him have been able to pull this off believably. And, while his pouty, dark performance might not be everyone’s favorite, I think that Craig does a pretty good job.
That being said, this movie felt an awful lot like another action flick I had just seen. I probably wouldn’t have noticed it if I hadn’t seen these films so closely together. But, this movie felt like a strangely similar echo of Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation. I know, all these action/spy movies fit into the same mold. But, I really got a strong sense of deja vu. We start with a super-competent man spy, and introduce his surprisingly skilled and sexy female counterpart. Of course, there’s a secret network of evil spies that is helmed by an irredeemable psychopath who is in this for personal reasons. Add a few crazy gadgets. Throw in a government agency that doesn’t trust this elite unit of renegade spies. Maybe a mole or two. You almost wouldn’t know which movie I was describing. But, this didn’t ruin either experience for me. Everyone loves a good spy blockbuster.
This was definitely a fun movie to see in the theater. The action sequences felt all the more exciting for being on the big screen. That being said, it’s not like I was eagerly anticipating this next installment of the Bond franchise. And, seeing it didn’t really make me hungry for another. It didn’t leave me thinking about the story for days afterward the way the previous film, Skyfall, did. This movie was really just a competent execution of a well worn formula. But, that’s not always a bad thing. This is the time of year that we get either mindless blockbusters in time for the holidays, or shameless Oscar bait. And, I really can’t stand the latter, so I’d happily take a few silly, British men in very tight pants, running along rooftops in Mexico City shooting at each other.