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Movie Review: Spectre (2015)

The name’s Battler.  Bookshelf Q. Battler.

And I’d like this review to be shaken, not stirred.

Aww who cares, only 3.5 people are going to read it anyway.

BQB here with a review of the latest James Bond movie, Spectre.

At the outset, let me just say this:

  1.  It wasn’t as good as Skyfall, but that’s only because Skyfall set the bar so high.
  2. But that being said, it was still pretty damn good.  A lot better than that Quantum of Solace nonsense.

I love James Bond.  Bond is the man every man wants to be.  I’d love to be able to charm the pants off of any woman I meet, beat the crap out of all my enemies and still make it to cocktail hour on time in a nice suit.

Sadly, that only happens in the movies.  Bond is so suave he can even charm top secret info out of hot enemy babes.  Meanwhile, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that one day I’ll get a woman to make a sandwich for me.  Damn it Bond, you probably get all the sandwiches you want, don’t you, you bastard?

Anyhoo – OBLIGATORY SPOILER WARNING.

It hasn’t been easy for Bond in the post-9/11 world.  Since that fateful day, as well as after various tragedies since, people have been a lot more aware of the fact that illicit intercontinental activities can bring about grave repercussions.

Suddenly, the white cat stroking caricature Bond used to face just doesn’t cut it anymore, not when we’re fully aware there are real monsters in the world.

Casino Royale got the message.  It was lost in Quantum of Solace, which involved a plot to steal water.  Sorry Bond, but we’re done with outlandish, cartoonish plots.

Skyfall gave the series a reboot, giving Bond a team of compatriots to work with – a new Q, a new Moneypenny, a new M, new colleagues all around.  And this is the first film where we get to see them all shine.

The plot?  Bond must infiltrate the evil underground organization known as Spectre and take it down.  Its operated by a sinister ne’er-do-well aptly played by Christoph Waltz.  Waltz provides a great performance – never too emotional, speaking matter of faculty about significantly evil doings.

Wrestler David Bautista STEALS the show.  It’s been awhile since we’ve seen a good Bond henchman.  I’m not talking about the main villain but a lackey, a number two, a guy who does the villain’s dirty work.  Oddjob is the last one I remember.

Bautista hunts Bond and even though your inner voice reminds you that it is Bond’s movie so of course he can’t die, this guy leaves you thinking Bond might just end up drinking that shaken martini in the sky.

He doesn’t.  Don’t worry.  I don’t think that’s a spoiler.  You all know Bond lives at the end of these things, right?  That’s why they’ve made so many of these movies.

Ralph Fiennes, having replaced Judi Dench as Bond’s boss, M, is at the helm in this movie.  You end up feeling for the guy.  He’s plagued by red tape and bureaucracy.  He has to chew Bond out for ignoring protocol and generating bad press, even though its obvious he understands that Bond’s unorthodox methods have saved the world from ruin time and time again.

It sucks to be management.

One criticism is that there is a whole scene where the villain spills the beans to Bond as to how his whole sinister operation works.  I kind of thought these movies were pushing to get past those tropes but oh well, you have to have some, right?

Oh and I should point out, the villain does have a white cat, but he doesn’t stroke it.  Progress.

STATUS:  Shelf worthy.  Worth seeing in the theater due to great stunts, fights, car chases, special effects.

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