Luke Quantrill reviews the No Time to Die Teaser Trailer

no time to die bond

At the end of my review of Spectre, many years ago, I said the following: "The end credits at long last. Thank you. I've suffered enough. I'll see you in five years for the next Daniel Craig film. I can hardly wait!"
The thing is though, that was a joke. I honestly thought Spectre was the last hurrah for Daniel Craig. This strange limbo time loop vortex where EON go to sleep for five years and then wheel Daniel Craig out again (invariably looking like someone in a hostage video when he has to meet the press to announce the new film), well, I thought that was finally all over with. I presumed EON had run out of rope (especially considering the underwhelming reception to Spectre) and time (Daniel Craig is no spring chicken) for that routine to be played out AGAIN. Well, I was wrong. It's nearly 2020 and another Daniel Craig Bond film is in the can and due to be released in April. The film, directed by Cary Fukywotsit, now has its first trailer.
No Time to Die, on the evidence of the trailer, looks uncannily like another (please insert large groan) Sam Mendes Bond film. If Mendes had come back and directed No Time to Die then this teaser trailer is the sort of thing you would have expected. It seems to be taking itself seriously, looks weirdly orange, has (yet AGAIN in the Craig era) a 'this time it's personal' and Bond goes rogue sort of story, returning characters from the previous Craig Bond films, action stuff in what appears to be Italy, Daniel Craig grimacing and looking serious in suits that seem too small for him, Daniel Craig delivering oh so serious lines in his strange acting school voice, a big emphasis on the Aston Martin as if we've never seen this car in a Bond film before (honestly, does anyone punch the air or jump for joy when Daniel Craig unveils an Aston Martin for the twenty-seventh blooming time in one of his films?), and so on. No Time to Die looks exactly like the sort of film that Barbara Broccoli will do la-di-da interviews for, pontificating pompously about the 'emotional journey' of Bond in this latest magnum opus that she has generously bestowed on the world.
Well, you might expect the prospect of all of this to have me just about ready to jump out of the window but it's different this time. No Time to Die might look like the same flipping film they've been serving up since Quantum of Solace but the backdrop to this film is not the same at all. Daniel Craig has now done several interviews where he has categorically stated that this is definitely his last Bond film and I believe him. This really does seem to be the end. And that is an intriguing prospect. Where does James Bond go after Daniel Craig? Who will they cast? Will they go much younger? Will they 'lease' the franchise to another studio (similar to the way that Sony loan out Spider-Man to Marvel). Will there be a big creative overhaul? Will Madam Broccoli take a back seat? Will she sell? Or will she be reinvigorated and relish the chance to launch a fresh era? Will she become Frederick Clegg to Daniel Craig's Miranda Grey and take him hostage in one of her palatial residences? Will she use CGI de-ageing technology and insert a computer animated Daniel Craig into the next twenty-five Bond films? Will they rush the next film into production for 2022? Will they go silent for five years again?
I don't know and I'm sure it's something they haven't really thought through themselves yet as they've been busy making No Time to Die. But it is quite exciting to think that for the first time in yonks the Bond franchise might very soon have a fresh slate. A chance to do something different. And this franchise could definitely do with a fresh slate. This repeating loop of four or five year gaps and then Daniel Craig coming back (AGAIN) has become really tiresome. Wouldn't it be great to have a fresh slate and Bond films on a more regular basis? The Bond franchise needs a jolt in the arm. It's like a Rolls-Royce being driven at 10 mph. Did you watch Mission Impossible: Fallout last year? The action in that film made the Daniel Craig Bond films feel about as exciting as watching Compo go down a hill in a bathtub in Last of the Summer Wine.
It would be nice to feel really excited about a Bond film again and it looks like that might actually be on the cards. In the meanwhile, we have No Time To Die on the way after Christmas. We'll see soon enough what the film is like. My hunch, based on that teaser, are that the worst parts of the Mendes films (the worst parts for me anyway) are the touchstones. I personally prefer the Bond films to be stand-alone adventures. I don't like the soap operish ongoing continuity of the Craig films and it feels risky to me to make what appears to be a fairly direct sequel to a five year old film that wasn't even very well recieved. Besides, can anyone actually remember what happened in Spectre anyway? I can't remember what happened in Spectre.
Maybe No Time To Die will be good, maybe it will rubbish, or maybe it will be somewhere in the middle. I hope it does alright though because that will mean more Bond films in the future. Best of all though it means that finally (FINALLY!) we will get that fresh start. And that surely is a prospect that all Bond fans can look forward to.
- Luke Quantrill


c 2019 Alternative 007

james bond alpine