His age isn’t a problem — Roger Moore was 57 when had his last hurrah as Bond A View to a Kill, with its hilarious over-reliance on stunt doubles, came out, and Craig isn’t even quite 50. Say what you like about Moore, but he got on the wavelength of those cheesy wisecracks, making even the lamest ones strangely endearing.
But all the least interesting aspects of Craig’s Bond have lately curdled his persona, turning him into a stiff, Madame Tussauds version of himself. It’s partly the writers’ fault, for neither appreciating this limitation nor giving Craig better jokes to work with.
Whether he still means it is a whole other question.
Last week, a report from the New York Times suggested that his return for Bond 25 was a “done deal” — despite his previous much-quoted statement, since recanted, that he’d rather “slash his own wrists” than step back into the role.
But you know, as soon as I heard Rachel Weisz was in this whizz-bang big budget 3D prequel, I instantly knew it would be top-notch. Because Weisz, 42, the Cambridge graduate with the glossy, swishy A-list hair and the slow, full-lipped smile is the unofficial kite mark of quality on any movie.
She radiates intelligence, honesty, a rather old-fashioned clear-eyed loveliness and, above all, class.
But there’s a strong case for the defence — and it partly hinges on Craig, whose performance in it is his best as Bond by a mile.
The film’s terseness — suicidally un-Bond-like, in some eyes — suited his own.But somehow I can’t see either of them throwing a hissy fit.In Oz: The Great and Powerful, she plays her first cartoonesque baddie, Evanora: a scheming beauty with a soft spot for torture. I was determined to play her like Bette Davis and really ratchet up the melodrama.Please don’t tell Walt, but Disney’s forthcoming blockbuster, Oz: The Great and Powerful isn’t really the sort of film I’d voluntarily go and see.The 1939 Wizard of Oz creeped me out so much as a little girl, I find myself overtaken by a sudden-and-highly-unusual urge to do housework when my own children watch it on DVD.But would the Bond films be better off without him?