I wanted to like it a lot and went in with an open mind, even though none of the trailers did much for me. It is, however, sorely lacking unfortunately. Spectre looks like a Bond film, maybe even smells like a Bond film, but it just feels like an empty shell, and lacking the spirit of 007. Mendes has tried to please everyone by combining the traditional elements, updated for the 21st century. Some of it works - mainly during the first half - but most of it is VERY OFF.
For such a barebones script, it could have been a 90 minute adventure. Instead it's stretched out to beyond tedium. The writers attempt to link the events that kicked off in Casino Royale, and bring everything together full circle, but it's done in a ham-fisted fashion. Spectre also suffers from Superman Returns Syndrome, in that this is supposed to be the biggest budget for a Bond movie, although I'm struggling to see what they actually did with the money apart from blow up a few buildings for real. Its true that the car chase is possibly one of the worst to feature in a Bond adventure - the contrast between this and the pursuit in Quantum of Solace is astounding. The only action that upped the excitement levels was the homage to From Russia With Love.
Spectre also suffers from some of the same issues as Skyfall - although I think the latter is actually superior. As excellent a director as Sam Mendes is - American Beauty and Road to Perdition are fantastic films - he is definitely not a good fit for Bond. I enjoyed Skyfall even if there was an underwhelming sense about it. Mendes is obsessed with having Daniel Craig posing and preening in almost every scene as if his life depended on it. Yes, he looks damn good in a designer suit, but stop trying to turn 007 into a model. This never happened to the other fella! My honest feeling towards Spectre is that the script is threadbare, it's waaaaay too long, and overall very disappointing. I may need to watch Quantum of Solace again, but it's very possible that Spectre may be the weakest of Daniel Craig's tenure to date.
Oh yes, despite my largely negative feelings, there are actually some things I liked about Spectre. Daniel Craig is as unflappable as ever, this time a little more relaxed (maybe too much so!). He now finally looks comfortable in his incarnation of 007, so it's a shame the film and script don't match his performance. Lea Seydoux is excellent as Madeleine Swann - banishing the memory of the one note Bérénice Marlohe. She's gorgeous and feisty, like a Bond girl should be, but definitely not a bimbo. Dave Bautista is also a formidable henchman as Mr. Hinx. Despite the limitations in the script, I also think Christophe Waltz is his usual classy self. Oh, and I don't mind the song at all.
5/10 (being very kind)