Screen Anarchists On: SPECTRE
(Bond may be back, but so is the nefarious organization known as Team ScreenAnarchy!)
Last week, Sam Mendes' second Bond film Spectre got its wide release in the United States, and loads of other places as well. By sheer luck, or rather the mystifying world of movie distribution, some countries got it a week earlier, which allowed me to write a timely review for a change.
Since then, it has been steamrolling across the world with great success, and the Internet became rife with Spectre lionizations, laments, lambastes, logistics even. People are extremely divided over this one, and this was noticeable even here at ScreenAnarchy: my colleague Matt Brown was a lot kinder than me towards Spectre, when he discussed it in his weekly column "Destroy All Monsters".
So we here at Screen Anarchy decided it was time for another group-review-roundup. I'll kick off with an afterthought to my review, and by clicking on the sides of the explosion picture you can switch between all eight contributors.
Note that we won't be mincing words or avoid spoilers. This is meant to be read by people who have already seen it, not those who want to see if it is worth visiting or not. Hell, if you're a Bond fan, that question probably isn't even applicable here anymore anyway...
But if you have seen the film, read all of these at leisure! And hopefully, you'll be as much amused as I was by how opposed we all are about Spectre.
Some of the reviews even mention weak points which other ones claim as strong points and vice versa, and it shows we all have a valid opinion.
Your opinion is valid as well of course, so chime in, in the comments, and HAVE YOUR SAY!
Shelagh Rowan-Legg, Jim Tudor, , Loïc Valceschini, Ernesto Zelaya Miñano, Simon Cocks and Kurt Halfyard contributed to this story.
Ard Vijn, Associate Editor, Features:
In my review I voiced my disappointment, for as much as I liked bits of Spectre I regretted it being a bit of a tired re-run of everything I disliked about Skyfall. For that film, I had even listed my grievances as a separate article, in which I lamented seeing a potentially fantastic film ruined by moments of utter stupidity.
Well, that happened again with Spectre, and in a big way. With Skyfall the franchise was already doing an uncomfortable split by keeping one foot on the serious side of Bond, and one foot on the silly side. With Spectre it's doing that split AND needing stilts, as the gap has become too wide to easily support both.
Part of the finale takes place in an abandoned building, set up as a mean-spirited exhibition of Bond's past adventures, and about to be blown up. It strangely resembles the film itself, with all its empty references and Bond moving to his retirement.
Speaking of blowing stuff up: boom! The explosion shown above is apparently going to enter the Guinness Book of World Records, as it is currently the largest of its kind done for a movie. But when I saw it in the film, it elicited no reaction in me whatsoever, except maybe a "Wait, what? All this from those few shots a minute ago?" Flashy, sure, but disappointingly devoid of logic or thrills.