No Time to Die Cary Joji Fukunaga (USA; 2021;) Daniel Craig, Lea Seydoux
viewed Tyneside Cinema 26 Oct 2021; ticket £10:75
time to get a life
Everything in this movie looked old and tired, including Dan our Man with license to massacre (Judging by the cadaver count). I see Danny Boyle backed out of directing this bean fest claiming a dispute about the script. Perhaps it was about script, as following the superhero trend, 007 scripts have become ever more incoherent, falling back on the action rather than plot to fill out the scenario…/
……perhaps Boyle was just being diplomatic: the Bond franchise has never been about the scripts; all that’s required is an excuse to move through the gears, to transpose the action from one scenic trope to another from one set piece to another with the actor playing Bond to deliver panache style self belief and of course that ‘MUSIC’…
…may be Danny Boyle’s action was motivated by what he saw when putting the production together. Not just the script, everything in the mix looks tired and second rate. Daniel Craig, however benignly one’s gaze falls upon him, simply looks old. The continuity device of linking up Craig and Sioux from Spectre is a crumbly device as Craig’s ‘Bond’ bonds with his family as a means of dignifying his ageing in this typical old boy Hollywood relationship.
The set piece action sequences that are defining of the franchise come across as crass retreads, borrowed stagings that are lacking originality and flare. And it looks like things have been staged on the cheap, in short: “Miss Money-Penny Pinched.”
In ‘No Time to Die’ Bond survives as a Relique de Cinema. The release of each new movie is like one of those old religious feast days, when they bring out a vial of a Saint’s coagulated blood and with incantation and gesture raise it up before the assembled faithful that they may witness its liquefaction before putting it back in the cupboard. What is actually seen may be open to debate, but the faithful depart satisfied their belief renewed, waiting on the next annual display of the spectacle.
Thinking in these terms the Broccoli family, need to think about pumping fresh blood into their franchise. There are only so many times the faithful will pay good money to see a film of coagulated goo: next time the blood needs to flow. As a franchise that has reinvented itself through some 60 years, this is something the producers have been able to achieve more than once.