When Daniel Craig first suited up as James Bond in 2006's Casino Royale, the traditional image of Ian Fleming's famous super-spy went out the window. Whereas old James Bonds of yore were charming and dashing, Craig's smoldering intensity grounded the character for the 21st century. (And he didn't care how you prepared his martini.)
Nearly 15 years later, Craig is finally hanging up his tux and Walther PPK. And in No Time to Die, he's doing it just like his predecessors, in a movie that looks and feels indisputably like vintage James Bond. You really can't mistake that Monty Norman theme for anything else.
What Happened? — On Thursday, a new trailer for No Time to Die was released, and months after the movie's original release in April. (You know exactly why it was delayed.) Unfortunately, it only promotes "In Theaters" for November.
You can watch the new 007 trailer below.
"The Past Is Dead" — The trailer for No Time to Die, by all accounts, is a traditional movie trailer. It highlights all the coolest parts of the movie — explosions, stunts, cool new tech — all while summarizing the plot, which centers on a new villain, Safin (played by a scarred Rami Malek) who threatens the world. The only real "twist," if you can call it that, is an emphasis on Lashana Lynch as a new double-O agent who is primed to replace James Bond.
"I met your new double-O," Bond says in the trailer. "She's a disarming young woman."
But what's different about No Time to Die is how ineffably 007 it feels. As if riffing on all the classic movies and audience's perception of what makes up a James Bond movie, No Time to Die proudly booms the classic Monty Norman theme in a way no Daniel Craig movie has done before.
Despite the grittier 'tude of Daniel Craig on the surface, he was no stick in the mud. His James Bond knew how to have fun. (Only he would ever have a drinking game with a scorpion.) Yet No Time to Die sporting a James Bond making dry quips ("You could imagine why I've come back to play") and clinking glasses with Ana de Armas feels so very Sean Connery and Pierce Brosnan. It's really something else how much of a throwback No Time to Die appears. When she casually unfurls a wrinkle-free tuxedo, it just feels right.
The Inverse Analysis — As the final James Bond movie starring Daniel Craig, it's necessary the franchise marks the film as a sort of "end of an era," because it is. It is therefore unsurprising that the movie (or at least its trailer) celebrates the franchise's entire familiar spirit rather than just the Craig era's distinctly non-traditional tone.
Looming over the release of No Time to Die is the matter of theaters. Movie theaters, at least those in the United States, are in no shape to open up everywhere and probably won't when No Time to Die rolls around. But I will personally go out of my way to hit up a drive-in because that's just how great No Time to Die is shaping up to be.
Unrelated to everything: It is also weird how MGM and United Artists planned No Time to Die to be an April release when every Craig-era Bond has been an October/November movie. This is an arbitrary thing but the James Bond movies are better suited for the autumn season. You're more inclined to enjoy Daniel Craig's expensive sweaters then.
No Time to Die will be released in theaters on November 13 in the UK and November 20 in the U.S.