This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Jake Duvall’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
*WARNING, IF YOU DON'T LIKE JAMES BOND THIS WILL BE BORING*
Oh man, this is without a doubt the most anticipated film I might have ever seen in my life. James Bond is like my cool uncle, and knowing that this was Daniel Craig's sendoff, I was kinda expecting what would happen, but man I was still surprised.
Of course, I have to start with the cast. Daniel Craig puts on a performance that fits this movie and this movie only... he's super casual after the opening scene, and treats the plot of a deadly vir... um, I mean nanobots killing millions quite lazily. In any other entry I would be condemning it, but it works here. Lashana Lynch was fine I suppose. I'm not the most opposed to what they did, but it's so obvious they were going for a "oh look how modern we are everyone." Didn't sit right with me, but she did a good job. Felix's return was much appreciated, and obviously the trio of Mi6 regulars are amazing (sorry Tanner).
The soundtrack and the cinematography of this film, I mean come on now this is like the magnum opus of Bond films in that aspect, just barely beating out Skyfall in my opinion. But it's got such a rich, saturated color, and the theme mixed with the Hans Zimmer score just screams Bond for me.
OK now the weak part... the actual plot. I wish they had just rolled with the obvious virus plot they had in pre-production. But because of this new-wave thing called Coronavirus, they had to change it all up and make it completely bizarre. Not to mention Rami Malek, who was pretty good at pulling off a convincing villain, but the script makes him quite possibly the most boring villain we've had since, like, Green in Quantum of Solace. The first half of the film though? Absolutely perfect. Exactly what it should've been. If you put the first half of this and the climax of You Only Live Twice after it, you'd have a perfect Bond film. But it's unfortunately lacking in a lot of the third act aspects.
Overall, I wanted this to be a 10/10 of course, but I was anticipating more of a 5-7, and yeah it was more in that territory. If they had fleshed out the villain, chopped out the family junk (sorry Madeline but nobody cares about this part of the movie), stuck with the Virus plot, and given Christoph Waltz an actual decent role, then we'd be looking at a 9/10 Bond film. This rating likely won't stay in the same place upon more watches, but a solid 7/10 is where this sits for me. Largely from the amazing first act, the score, the look, and the acting from everyone.
And yeah, I know he died, but as always, James Bond will return.