By Anand Venkitachalam
Daniel Craig’s fifth and final outing as 007 in ‘No Time To Die’ may not make it to the targeted box office of $900 million, nonetheless it managed to earn a whopping $765 million against expectations, making it the third highest grossing movie of 2021.
In pre Covid times the movie was expected to make $900 million – $1 billion according to producers. However, Covid cost the movie various delays, Made with a production budget of $250 million, the film was beset with delays in re-shooting scenes, in production as well promotion. All this cost at least over $100 million.
Directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga, ‘No Time To Die’ is the 25th film in the franchise. Released on 30th September, 2021, the film sees a retired Bond who is recruited by CIA and goes-toe-to toe against a very dangerous foe played by Rami Malek. The movie while definitely action-packed sees a spin on the Bond series by focusing on the human side of not just the character but the franchise as a whole.
The movie has been positively received with commendation for its script, tone, action, and cinematography, with particular praise directed at Craig’s acting, with many calling it a satisfying conclusion to his run of the character.
Though for many movie goers this wasn’t the most daring or sleek film, it did mark a passionate and fitting end for a long and thrilling run as evident from the reviews and scores on IMDB-7.4/10 ,Rotten Tomatoes-84% and CinemaScore -”A-”.
The iconic British spy James Bond, aka agent 007 from the Ian Fleming novels, has been played by several actors with each giving the MI6 killer their own take, whether it was Sean Connery’s smart womanizer with a killer streak, or Roger Moore’s full playboy mode with duty to queen and country with the most unrealistic events transpiring, or Timothy Dalton’s dark, serious, gritty, violent and more realistic portrayal, showcasing the deeper side of Bond with his own emotional problems with the job though always carrying out his license to kill.
Since Daniel Craig’s arrival as Bond, the franchise has seen a different spin. Though it still had the old tropes of fast cars, cool gadgets, strong villains with high ended goals and an infinite of resources and a good deal of sex appeal, these tropes post- ‘Casino Royale’ and to an extent even in his debut were altered or modified with a darker and more realistic spin on it though it still remained cheesy and far-fetched.
Daniel Craig in his final offering of Bond offers yet something new, evolving from an arrogant stone-cold killer in ‘Casino Royale’ to one bent on revenge in ‘Quantum of Solace’ to a man carrying around his emotional scars dealing with an enemy in the shadows in ‘Skyfall’ and eventually coming face to face with Bond’s arch nemesis Ernst Stravo Blofled in ‘SPECTRE’.