No Time To Die [2021] ★★★½

It’s been 15 years since Daniel Craig made his 007 debut in “Casino Royale”. Now 5 movies later, it’s time to bid farewell to one of the finest actors to ever portray James Bond (I think we’ve settled this after “Skyfall”). And what an ending it was. Action-wise, the film’s a masterclass in pulse-pounding sequences, brilliantly staged by director Cary Joji Fukunaga, who truly gives it his very best. But fans are in for something more, much much more. Looking for a villain? Try Ramy Malek’s delicious performance as Lyutsifer Safin, a mysterious killer with an agenda of his own. We learn right from the start that Bond has left active service following the events of “Spectre”. But it doesn’t take long for him to get right back in the game, for one last hurrah. No spoilers here, since we already know that this will be Craig’s final outing. But the sendoff is fitting, and, might I add, quite emotional. How? I won’t say. But I will tell you that at 163 minutes, this is the longest 007 film to date. I will also tell you that you’ll be glued to your seat from start to finish. Much like “Casino Royale” and “Skyfall”, “No Time To Die” delivers spectacular sequences, worthy of the best Bond movies. Credit Craig for being one hell of a 007 since 2006. A few bumps on the road made “Quantum Of Solace” and “Spectre” less than great movies. But Craig gives it his absolute best in “No Time To Die”, and die-hard fans of the franchise will be grateful for that. I don’t know what the future holds for Bond, but I do know that Craig’s tenure was truly unforgettable. Same goes for this movie.

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