"I was taking some overdue holiday"
Skyfall...is like a comet. It's a one-off, and there's no way to match that spectacle. But Spectre...has everything that makes a great Bond film. Great action, great directing, great music, great villain, and some great humour. Now you probably notice I didn't mention the narrative...well, its because there's where most of the problems lie.
The action sequences are brilliant. They're either very entertaining to watch or very suspenseful. There is this one fight scene in the train that stands out in my mind - very suspenseful, yet very cool to watch. The weakest action scene to me is, in fact, the car chase because there isn't a lot happening in the chase. A bit lacklustre. But most of the action sequences are just great fun to watch. And Daniel Craig makes it all look so cool.
Now, I have to give special credit to director Sam Mendes because the opening shot - a non-stop tracking shot that follows Bond for a few minutes - is a visual treat & masterpiece. Accompanied by a catchy rythmic music, the opening shot brings us from the middle of a festival, and into the action! And throughout the film, Sam Mendes' work is nothing short of brilliant.
About the villains, Mr. Hinx & Franz Oberhauser...well they're both great! Mr. Hinx looks big & menacing and proves to be a real physical challenge to Bond. And Oberhauser, played by Christoph Waltz, is a creepy & cunning figure. His first scene is just...marvelous. He doesn't appear for a lot of the film, but when he does, he always brings that charisma in with the way he speaks. Well, how could you expect any less from an actor with two Oscars?
Now, onto the plot. Unfortunately, its hard for me to explain without spoiling details of the story. But know this, the main plot that follows Bond as he journeys to unravel this mysterious organization & character from his past is still great. There are some pivotal scenes in mind that are great moments within the narrative. But what happens towards the end is less than satisfying in terms of plot, and the thread that tries to connect the dots feels very weak.
(For the full explanation on this narrative issue, keep a look out for a Spoiler Discussion to come in about two weeks from now...)
But in any case, there's still lots of humour throughout, much like its predecessor. And despite the flaws, I had great fun from start to end and the 148 minutes running time didn't even feel like it. And you have everything that makes a great Bond film in Spectre. A solid action blockbsuter!