The first full trailer for the upcoming 24th James Bond film, Spectre, will surely have filled every 007 fan with excitement, as well as having set social media ablaze with renewed speculation about the film’s plot, characters and details. Named itself after a shadowy, secret organisation from the franchise’s history, past teaser trailers have given little away about what’s in store for viewers. Now, however, we can deliver a play-by-play of everything we know so far.
In the opening sequence of both the trailer and the film, Ralph Fiennes – in his first true appearance as the new M, following Judi Dench’s departure – berates Bond over an unauthorised “holiday” in Mexico City. This so-called “holiday” seems to suggest that 007 was in the process of resolving a personal vendetta. Filmed on location and taking place during the Día de Muertos (‘Day of The Dead’) celebrations, the shots constitute what long-time Bond producer Michael G Wilson has described as the “biggest opening sequence we’ve ever done.” The scenes involved a whopping 1,500 extras in colourful costumes, giant puppets, a fight on a helicopter and what looks to be an exploding apartment building. Perhaps not the most relaxing holiday Bond could have taken.
After a blast of that infamous theme song, we’re back in London with Naomie Harris’ Moneypenny quipping that, though they say Bond’s career is finished and he appears suspended, she thinks he’s “just getting started.” Harris’ performance in Skyfall brought a fresh interpretation to the character, who has appeared in 22 of of the franchise’s 24 films to date. Since her first film portrayal, the character has had simmering romantic tension with Bond despite their professional relationship, and hope holds out that Harris and Craig’s playful, banter-like flirting from Skyfall will carries over into Spectre.
Ben Whishaw’s adorable Q also gets a chance to step into the true swing of his role, showing Bond his (flamethrower wielding) car and gadgets in an underground bunker reminiscent of Bond films past. However, the role may not be as simple as all that, when Bond once again appears to confide in his Quartermaster, as he requests they go off the grid together; “Do one more thing for me.” “What do you have in mind?” “Make me disappear.”
The small resigned sigh that accompanies Whishaw’s delivery suggests that the antics Bond gets up to will make this new, youthful Q grey far before his time.
We see more of the snowy jeep and plane chase glimpsed in the teaser trailers, set in the Austrian Alps.
What’s new, however, is the knowledge that Léa Seydoux’s Dr. Madeleine Swann accompanies our hero throughout. She is certaintly the character who shows the most personality throughout the trailer, though it must be hoped that she’s more than just a feisty prop. Indeed, we can see that she provides intel for Bond (and an oversized jumper-wearing Q), so for now the role looks to be one where the Palme d’Or – the highest honour at the Cannes Film Festival – winner will be able to properly showcase her acting prowess.
Following shortly after are some more new faces; a bit of seduction from Monica Bellucci’s character suggests that the ladies will be well represented by Spectre’s Bond Girls, and Dave Bautista’s much anticipated Mr. Hinx cuts a threatening silhouette and throws some serious punches. Daniel Craig is often discussed as being the ‘thug-like’ Bond, full of physicality in a way his 007 predecessors were not. It’s strange but exciting to see him physically – rather than intellectually – outgunned by a much larger opponent, who harks back to Richard Kiel’s Jaws.
In this way, much like Skyfall, Spectre is shaping up to heavily rely on – or at least reference – the
franchise’s history. While this previously came in the form of affectionate nods to the 50 years of Bond film history that 2012’s Skyfall commemorated, Spectre instead seems to be using that history to add depth and weight to the threat posed by the terrorist organisation of the same name. A global crime syndicate, the group arose in the novel Thunderball and the first Eon Productions Bond film Dr. No – reappearing in five subsequent films throughout the franchise. If the very name of the film wasn’t enough, other references to the group’s history can be caught in the trailer. Bond plucks Dr. Swann from an Alpine ‘research facility’; a very similar set-up to the one fronted by SPECTRE in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, which Bond infiltrates. They also seem to enjoy a ride in the dinner car of a sublimely elegant train, reminiscent of Sean Connery’s travel on the Orient Express in From Russia With Love.
And while we get the old, we’re also treated to some final tantalising glimpses of the new. Christoph Waltz’s new villain, Oberhauser, is seen for the first time as more than just a shadowy figure. “It was me, James,” he menacingly croons, “the author of all your pain.”
There are plenty of visually stunning shots packed into the trailer, as well as an abundance of hints at what’s to come that remain unexplained – a funeral; the wall of MI6’s dead, scrawled with Bond’s name; the fallout of an explosion – but all of that will now just have to wait until the film’s release.
Spectre is released in the UK and Ireland on October 26th, and worldwide on November 6th, 2015.