Rubado column: Daniel Craig’s Bond and the future of 007
The following is an opinion column written by a Forum New Service editorial staff member. It does not necessarily reflect the views of the Echo Press.
The fifth and final installment of the Daniel Craig James Bond saga hit theaters over the weekend, which begs the question, “Who’s next?”
Look, I’m only 25-years old, so I’m not going to pretend that I’ve seen all of the older Bond movies. I think it’s one of those things where the Bond you prefer correlates to when you grew up. The same can be said for Batman.
I enjoy the Daniel Craig films. I think “Casino Royale” is a step above the other four, and “Quantum of Solace” isn’t very good, but they all have qualities that make them fun to watch. The latest, “ No Time To Die,” is a fun conclusion that does a fine job of wrapping up a B-level action series.
The traditional style of 007 films has become outdated. I don’t think a lot of people go into action films looking for a serious movie. The Mission Impossible franchise has it done perfectly. The movies appear serious on the surface, but there’s a level of self-awareness that what Tom Cruise’s character does is ridiculous.
I’m heavily biased towards Mission Impossible. “Mission Impossible: Fallout” is in my top 10 favorite movies of all time, and I love that Cruise does all of his own stunts. But above all else, Mission Impossible always feels original, and I never got that feeling with the Bond saga after “Casino Royale.”
Don’t get me wrong, I can still enjoy the Bond films for what they are, but they begin to feel repetitive. The fourth movie, “Spectre,” had one of the most annoying villain tropes in cinema. “You know all those bad guys you fought in the first three movies? Well, they all work for me. Now, what are you going to do?” It’s lazy, and it’s been done many times before and it never feels original.
The biggest issue with “No Time To Die” was the villain. The movie never gave us a good reason to believe he’s that bad of a guy. It’s also hard to establish the main villain when you have several other villains on the side.
My personal complaints with villain arcs and the lack of originality don’t affect my score. I just think it’s an underlying problem with a somewhat stale film franchise. There was so much awesome stuff to pull from “No Time To Die” that made it a fun trip to the theater. I gave it a 79/100, but it’s time to figure out who will be the next James Bond.
As long as movies are being made, there will be a James Bond. Rumors have swirled for years about who will follow Craig, and I have a few names.
First, I think Lashana Lynch should get a shot. What? A woman? A Black Woman? How dare you? Before you cry about this suggestion, you need to see “No Time To Die,” where they literally cast her as 007. Also, if this makes you mad, find a new franchise. Rumors have been heavily surrounded around the premise that the next Bond will be a person of color.
If they go a different direction from Lynch, I would love to see John Boyega get a shot. He starred in the new Star Wars trilogy and has a ton of charisma. The new Bond should be able to look the part while also bringing a unique flair to the role. Boyega is a great fit.
However, I really do think there’s only one person that’s perfect for it, and that’s Henry Golding. If you’ve seen any of his work, you know there isn’t a more ideal candidate out there. I think he could be the perfect injection of life into this franchise.