4/10. While No Time to Die has thrills and spills, it is sadly a disappointing affair in what is a poor farewell for my favourite James Bond actor.
There are many who will see this film and be in awe of the action and stunt sequences but I’d be curious to see how many actually remember the storyline and what happens. This is one of those films where the action takes priority over substance and for what has become my favourite franchise of all time, it’s sad to see that this is the case. But the series has been all over the way place so I suppose it isn’t that much of a surprise, even if I would have wanted better given how impressively it all began with.
The plot is incredibly over-crammed and lacklustre. The story stumbles all over the place and let me add that it’s not that No Time to Die suffers from a lack of creative vision. This is the first Bond film to be shot using large-format 65mm IMAX and Panavision cameras, and Fukunaga and his production team have delivered a big-screen experience in the truest sense of the phrase. But the spectacle is only half the story. There are too many narrative choices that either bogle my mind, go nowhere or just lose my interest. I’m not sure why certain plot elements were brought up, why certain characters were introduced, if only to ignore them for the rest of the film.
One of my biggest gripes is that for all the impressive acting capabilities possessed by Rami Malek, we barely see his character on screen and almost none of what he does makes any logical sense. I can’t go into details without spoiling the fun or rather lack of fun but suffice to say, his involvement with the film feels completely underused and mismanaged.
After 165 minutes of gibberish and with a second act that you can leave and return without missing much, something is missing with No Time to Die. Something special is gone and the magic I witnessed in Casino Royale feels like an old remnant of the past. The ending might be what we all expect but it certainly isn’t one that we should be happy with.