Monday, 8 February 2016

Blu-ray Review - Spectre

*This is a sponsored review. All opinions are 100% mine.

PG-13; 148 minutes; Buy Link: Amazon

With all the Star Wars mania that went on last year, I had almost forgotten about the newest James Bond adventure (twenty-fourth to be exact), titled Spectre which arrives tomorrow on Blu-ray and DVD. My review copy arrived on my doorsteps early this morning, and being a big 007 fan, I went ahead and watched the Blu-ray this afternoon.

There are two reasons why I didn't see the film in theaters:

1. It received mixed reviews from mainstream critics.

2. I live in a small town and the film never arrived at the one-screen theater.

 The previous film, Skyfall, was the biggest grossing entry of the franchise and it was a critical hit as well. The director Sam Mendes returned to helm Spectre, which the film had a handful of product problems including the 2014 Sony Pictures Entertainment hack and rumors of the production going way over budget; with the final budget estimated between $245 to $250 million. While Spectre didn't make as much money as Skyfall, it was still one of the biggest grossing films of 2015, taking in $877.9 million.

In Spectre, James Bond is on a more personal mission this time after he received a recorded video message from his deceased boss, M (a cameo played by Judi Dench). With the 00 division about to be canceled, Bond is on a race against time to overthrow the terrorist organization known as Spectre. His only lead to them is Dr. Madeleine Swann (played by Léa Seydoux), the daughter of Mr. White (played once again by Jesper Christensen). Of course he gets a little help from Moneypenny (played by Naomie Harris), Q (played by Ben Whishaw) and the new M (played by Ralph Fiennes) along the way.

The "Vesper Lynd" plot from Casino Royal and Quantum of Solace is brought back into the fold as its revealed that Spectre was the one pulling the strings all along. Running the organization is Ernst Stavro Blofeld (played by Christoph Waltz), a man that is part of Bond's past. 

Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts: While I loved Skyfall, I think Spectre is slightly better. Yes, there were some complaints from critics about the long running time, but to me the film was fast-paced and the 148-minute length never bothered me. Daniel Craig once again gives a great performance as 007. The supporting-cast does a good job as well, especially Christoph Waltz as the new version of the Bond villain "Blofeld," which the character was first played by Donald Pleasence in the 1967's You Only Live Twice. The action-scenes and the cinematography are topnotch. The only thing that I didn't care was for the Oscar-nominated song "Writings on the Wall" by Sam Smith as it doesn't fit in with the weird opening titles sequence. Overall, Spectre is an entertaining thrill ride from start to finish and it's one the best Bond films ever made.

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