After watching the new trailer for No Time to Die, the first question most of us are asking is: where can I go to get Gatling guns installed in my car? There’s also the question of what this movie will do for the career of Ana De Darmas, an up and coming Latino actress who has every chance of being the breakout star here – well, along with secret agent Nomi, played by Lashana Lynch.
But in terms of the movie, James Bond fans and casual fans alike are probably asking these 10 questions.
10 What’s With The Masks?
The trailer goes out of its way to show us the Phantom of the Opera style mask used by the villain Safin (Rami Malek – more on him below), and Bond’s girlfriend Madeleine Swann. For Safin, it seems to be covering some facial scars, but for Swann, its discovery is a source of grief and perhaps fear.
Many on Twitter have already jumped on the ornamental versus functional nature of the mask and speculated its link to incarcerated super-villain Blofeld (Christoph Waltz). Fans are now scouring old Bond films – particularly those with Daniel Craig – to see if there’s a hidden meaning to be found within these masks.
9 How Long Has 007 Been Gone?
The internet says Bond has been absent from MI6 for 2 years, but the trailer makes it look much longer. At the end of Spectre 5 years ago, it was clear that Bond had retired from the service, and is headed into the sunset with Swann. But the trailer doesn’t clarify what he has been doing in that time, other than sailing and posing dramatically at a beach house.
Has Bond become a mercenary? Were he and Dr. Swann on a 2-year vacation? And what happened in that time away that makes Bond willing to return to work – or at least return to action to help his friend Felix Leiter (Jeffery Wright)? Which leads to the next question …
8 How Can Bond Be Reinstated?
In what may be the best line in the movie – certainly in the trailer – Craig stumbles over the infamous “Bond, James Bond” line while reintroducing himself to MI6 security. So it’s clear from the trailer, and the movie’s marketing, that Bond has left Her Majesty’s Secret Service for some time.
But how does he get back in, and why would M allow it? In License to Kill when Bond – at the time played by Timothy Dalton – threatened to quit MI6, he was told, “we’re not a country club,” and could only leave when told. The circumstances for his reintegration into MI6 are likely a key part of the second act of No Time to Die.
7 Why Would CIA Agent Leiter Turn To Bond For Help?
Assuming Bond’s friend Leiter is still working for the CIA – and the trailer doesn’t suggest otherwise – why would he seek out a retired British agent for help? In the trailer, Felix says Bond “is the only one he can trust,” and the promotional material says Leiter is looking for some support to find a missing scientist.
But something seems fishy here. In the Bond universe, the CIA is well equipped to handle any crisis and has bailed 007 out of trouble many times. And Leiter has been a loyal friend in previous Craig-as-Bond movies, so he’s unlikely to put Bond in a position where either of them would be compromised. It’s doubtful that Leiter, or those pulling the strings, need Bond’s help on a simple recovery mission.
6 Where Does Blofeld Fit?
It’s obvious from the trailer that the messy capture of Ernst Stavro Blofeld in Spectre will pay off dramatically in No Time to Die. Here, Bond confronts him in a glassy cell reminiscent of the one used to imprison Silva (Javier Bardem) in Skyfall. The brief scene also looks a lot like the infamous meeting between Agent Starling and Dr. Lector in Silence of the Lambs, a moment that’s spawned dozens of similar “ask the killer how to find the killer” tropes.
In any case, Blofeld seems to be the key to the puzzle in No Time to Die – but is he also manipulating Bond, or worse, Dr. Swann? Does he know Safin, and is he helping to set in motion the next trap for Bond?
5 Who’s Trapped Under The Ice?
In the wintery scenes in the trailer, we see someone struggling under a thick sheet of ice, while a masked Safin (at least we think it’s Safin) awaits above. There are 2 key questions here: who is drowning in the cold water – Bond we assume – and are we expected to believe that anyone can undertake a snowy swim for even a few seconds and survive?
Perhaps it’s an uncooperative henchman underwater, or maybe the aforementioned lost scientist. Either way, they had best emerge soon on-screen or risk the disbelief of an excitable audience.
4 Why Is Bond Driving An Old Car?
Maybe this isn’t the most important question, but it is distracting. With all of the vehicles at Bond’s disposal, why is he driving a 1964 Aston Martin DB5? True it has been modified – machine guns, bulletproof glass, and we’re assuming the standard Good Guy Tires that are impervious to damage (bullets or otherwise). There may even be an ejector seat, as Bond threatened M (Judi Dench) within Skyfall.
But if you’re going into battle with well-armed men with 21st-century weapons, a 50-year-old relic doesn’t seem the right tool for the job. Maybe the car is analogous to Bond himself?
3 Who Is The New 00 Agent?
Much like moviegoers who witnessed Michelle Yeoh’s star turn as agent Wai Lin in Tomorrow Never Dies, everyone is asking “who is the new 00” played by Lashana Lynch. The trailer makes her look confident, capable, and as playful as Bond. It’s clear from the marketing that she’s being positioned as Bond’s counterpart in M16 – a newly “woke” M16 – but where does she fit into the story? Her role is especially troubling when we see her escorting Dr. Swann down back hallways, or suggesting Bond is “out of his lane”. Surely once she gets to know 007 she’ll come to appreciate him like we all do, and aid him on his mission.
2 Who Is The New Villian?
In what should be another star-making turn, actor Rami Malek plays the villainous Safin, a masked and disfigured man opposing 007’s plans to stop him. However, what Safin is up to, why he’s singled out James Bond, and what effect he has on Dr. Swann remains to be seen.
Do he and the doctor share a past life? Swann is the daughter of the traitorous Mr. White, played by Jesper Christensen in all 3 previous Daniel Craig films, so is there a relation to Safin? And is Blofeld, the admitted “author of all [Bonds] pain,” somehow directing Safin from afar? Malek, like Bardem, should make an exciting Bad Guy, so let’s hope his character has enough weight to engage the audience.
1 Why Would Swann Betray Bond?
The biggest question is asked 10 seconds into the trailer. Why would the love of Bond’s life betray him? What that betrayal entails, and what impact it has on their relationship seems secondary to the fact that they’re running for their lives. Obviously, the actions of Dr. Swann, and how it affects the other new characters, form the crux of the story in No Time to Die.
The repercussions of this betrayal will likely resonate throughout the movie. Why would anyone deceive Bond and to what lengths is he willing to go to redeem himself? If this movie is truly Craig’s last outing as 007, will this betrayal lead Bond to a place in the story where he cannot return?
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