Spectre might be Daniel Craig’s last film as the enviable James Bond, but even if he returns, the film is part of an era of Bond that was transformative for the series. Films like Casino Royale and Skyfall were some of the better Bond films since the series inception in 1962. Sean Connery makes me giddy in a way none of the other Bond actors ever have, but goddamn if Craig didn’t come close to dethroning the king. Even if it Spectre isn’t as special as its predecessor Skyfall, it’s a bloody good Bond movie.
Even if you didn’t see Skyfall, you heard the eponymous track by Adele, which in my opinion, was one of the best songs of her career. How was the Bond series going to one-up the infallible Adele? With Sam Smith – duh. I’m not even that big a fan of the guy; I thought “Stay With Me” was un-inspired and boring.
But Spectre’s theme song, “Writing’s on the Wall” by Smith is a perfect balance of piercing falsetto mixed with epic operatics. The story hadn’t even started and this moving, tragic ballad had me tearing up.
Spectre is unapologetically sexy. Daniel Craig and Léa Seydoux are both in peak form. Seydoux, who plays Bond girl Madeleine Swann, is breathtakingly beautiful; she’s reminiscent of Honor Blackman in Goldfinger or Marilyn Monroe in The Asphalt Jungle. She’s a total badass as well, saving Bond’s life at least twice. The two look ravishing together.
Plus, Bond is dressed to the nines in every scene. I want every outfit, even if I’m going to go into debt acquiring just one piece from his wardrobe. Fashionistas, check out a bunch of the looks from the film, neatly organized here.
After they kill Bond-baddie Mr. Hinx – played by former wrestler Dave Bautista – Bond and Swann lie panting on the floor of a moving train. Catching her breath, Swan asks innocently “What do we do now?” Cut to them ripping each other’s clothes off in their sleeper. The flirtation is minimal, the passion is raw.