With the release of No Time to Die, I thought it was a perfect time to take a look at Craig’s Bond films again. I was a big Bond fan as a child, loving Pierce Brosnan’s take on the iconic character, and Casino Royale was the first entry I got to see in the cinema and absolutely loved it. To me Craig is always going to be my James Bond and I can’t see anyone replacing him. In anticipation of Craig’s final outing, I re-watched all of his films. Here’s my ranking from the worst to best film in the Craig years of James Bond.
5 – Quantum of Solace
I’m sure no one is surprised at this being ranked lowest. It’s an absolute mess of a film. It’s recently been reported that this was due to writer’s strikes, and it does feel unfinished, but that doesn’t win it any graces. It’s hard to follow, really unengaging and doesn’t live up to Casino Royale in the slightest. I saw this in the cinema and didn’t like it, and now that I’ve watched it again my opinion hasn’t changed. There are still some excellent action sequences, the song by Jack White and Alicia Keys is fantastic, but in the end it’s still a confusing mess.
4 – Skyfall
This is a hard list to write. Numbers 4, 3, and 2 are so close it’s hard to choose one. Skyfall has gone at number 4, because I think it meanders a bit in places. I’ve seen this film a ton of times, and I absolutely love it. It’s one of the best Bond films ever, and the fact that Daniel Craig has made better ones is just a testament to how good his Bond is. Skyfall was released 50 years after Dr No. It’s a great film with some exceptional set pieces and action sequences I just think it takes a little too long to get going properly.
3 – No Time to Die
It’s all over now. Craig is no longer James Bond. I’ve only just watched this and I loved it. I had hyped it up so much over the last few years. It feels like I’ve seen the trailer for it a hundred times, it’s played before almost every cinema trip since very early 2020 and I’ve never got bored of it. The film absolutely lives up and this is just a smidge off being the top spot and that’s because of the ending. It’s too close to the release to spoil anything, so don’t worry, I won’t. I just thought it was a lazy ending. I was so invested in the film, and completely drawn in. There were moments when my heart was beating faster with the tension. Then the credits rolled, and I felt a little cheated. It’s still an exceptional film and I will be seeing it again soon, probably in the cinema if I can drag Tabby again. Maybe the ending will grow on me.
2 – Spectre
I’m sure this will come as a bit of a shock, being placed so high. I know that a lot of people have issues with this film, but I really loved it. The opening long sequence, the reintroduction of Blofeld, great car chases and the way it links all of Craig’s films together. The final sequence at the MI6 headquarters. It’s a great action film that never gets boring or feels to long. It’s got a standard Bond premise about people taking over the world, but it’s still entertaining to watch. I also think Christoph Waltz is excellent as Blofeld.
1 – Casino Royale
There’s no surprises here. Casino Royale is the best Daniel Craig Bond film, it may even be the best Bond film of all time. It completely changed up the formula with a grittier and more grounded tone. Bond becomes a fully developed character. The villain, Le Chiffre, is excellent. The globe-trotting adventure is fast paced and exciting and when you finally get to the stylish casino sequence the film plays all the right hands. Then it doesn’t end there, it keeps going with a great car chase, torture scene and a twist. This film also has a lot of emotional weight to it. Eva Green’s character, Vesper, is an incredible character and her influence stays over Bond right through to No Time to Die.
Daniel Craig is Bond for my generation, and I can’t see anyone topping his performance. I know there will be a new one, announced sometime next year I imagine, and I’m excited for what comes next. I hope it’s someone unheard of and a lot younger than Craig, because I feel that a lot of his storylines revolve around him being too old, it would be good for some fresh ideas.
Thanks for reading and until next time,