Sands In The Hourglass

No Time To Die
Stars: Daniel Craig, Rami Malek, Lea Seydoux, Lashana Lynch, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, Jeffrey Wright, Christoph Waltz, Ralph Fiennes, Billy Magnussen, Ana de Arma, David Dencik and Lisa-Dorah Sonnet
Director: Cary Joji Fukunaga
Scriptwriters: Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, Cary Joji Fukunaga and Phoebe Waller-Bridge
Composer: Hans Zimmer
Cinematographer: Linus Sandoren
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, United Artists and Universal Pictures
Rating: PG 13 for violence and themed material
Running Length: 165 Minutes

Sigh, Sean, David, George, Roger, Timothy, Pierce and Daniel.  All “James Bond’s” and all fading into memory.  Such is the life of a 007, who is licensed to kill, and must learn survival skills even a team of Navy Seals would envy. All things have a beginning and a conclusion, and “No Time To Die” is the conclusion of Daniel Craig as Bond.  What happens next is anyone’s guess.  Will Bond and the number "007" come back as Caucasian, African-American, Asian or…female?  There is a clue in this film as to what may happen in the future.      

That said, “No Time To Die” allows Bond fans to travel the world with their hero and have adventures and love affairs, the “Mission Impossible” crew only dream about. In this particular story, Bond has been retired for five years.  He lives with Madeline Swann (Lea Seydoux) Bone visits Vesper’s tomb, who was really Bond’s true love, and while there, Bond is attacked.  Who else knew they were there?  Bond believes Madeleine is in league with Specter, and from there on in, Bond turns into someone ready for action. Felix Leiter (Jeffrey Wright) wants Bond back to find a missing scientist, supposedly killed in an explosion (they never are.) The explosion is a cover-up for another dastardly plot to wreck the world and this time concocted by Rami Malek as Lyutsifer Safin (try pronouncing that name) and Ernst Blofeld (Christoph Waltz). In-between confessions, chases, escapes, and travels around the globe, we find that the scientist in question (David Dencik as Valdo Obruchev) has invented nanobots that can infiltrate a person’s body system and destroy them from within. (“Stargate” had this long ago.)  The major supporting cast for a James Bond film is here from Moneypenny (Naomie Harris) to Q (Ben Whishaw) to M (Ralph Fiennes) to the new girl on the block, Nomi (Lashana Lynch.)  It is exciting, though at 165 minutes, a bit long, even for car chase-lovers. Still, for Daniel Craig-as-James-Bond, it is enough. His interpretation of James Bond will be the chiseled-no expression face and eyes like steel darts.  The stunts are jaw-dropping ranging from the car on a bridge (cars are loaded with gadgets), a plane from within a plane and motorcycles. If anyone in the audience would want to try one of the stunts they would end up like cooked rice. Remember, James Bond lives in another world than ours. Hans Zimmer’s memorable soundtrack and Linus Sandoren’s cinematography are to be noticed. Singer Billie Eilish and her brother, Finneas, co-wrote the theme song for "No Time To Die." 

Ian Fleming’s character, James Bond, has succeeded from the 1960’s and “Dr. No” with Ursula Andress coming out of the sea in a bikini to Bond bringing flowers to the grave of a former love. Adventure, love-on-the-run and now, retirement. If you saw the first Bond film in a movie theater, you know that Bond endures as much as his original audience and will continue. That in mind, “No Time To Die” has a bit of sentimentality to it, like watching a sunset just beginning to go down to the tops of trees. This storyline is fanciful and the villains are unique, as always. They have their reasons to be villains, just as the British Service has its reason to destroy them.  

Some say, there will be a new Era of James Bond films to come, I say, bring it on. The audience will always be there and there is room on the pedestal for another actor’s name. To quote an enduring legacy, “Live long and prosper.”

Copyright 2021 Marie Asner