No Time to Die is a magnificent film. This review will contain major spoilers after the fifth paragraph, as they are necessary to meaningfully analyze the film, though only those relevant to the points made. For a spoiler-free review, listen to Counter-Currents Radio Podcast No. 380 , where Greg Johnson bravely attempts to discuss the film without giving away plot details, and where Endeavour somewhat brazenly attempts to discuss it without having seen it at all.
Without giving anything away, No Time to Die is not merely a good Bond film, but an outstanding one. It is pro-white, and in the fullness of time may yet become historic. Ignore the cynics and naysayers. Go and see this movie.
But before plunging into the muddy racial aspects of the film (partly embodied by London-born Jamaican Lashana Lynch), some quick words on the directing and production. The film is tightly scripted and paced, and doesn’t squander any of the audience’s attention. It has an immense amount of ground to cover in terms of plot, character development, the usual Bond travel-catalogue landscape shots, and violent tussles and vehicle chases, as well as the necessary exposition on the gimmick holding the world to ransom (again). It doesn’t sag or outstay its welcome at any particular point, yet it gives Bond (and Craig) the breathing room for memorable domestic moments and the human touch of everyday, witty interaction. This allows Bond to be more of a real human being than the Brosnan android who preceded him, who whilst an excellent Bond felt like a plastic action man for want of intelligent development. (Like most things plastic that slowly degrade, Brosnan’s Bond was made in the ‘90’s and got worse going into the malaise of the early 2000s).
Billie Eilish’s broody and understated theme for No Time to Die is also wonderful, and the melody recurs throughout at painful and introspective moments to draw a tear. The opening credits evoke foreshadowing and are thought-provoking and evocative without being overblown, while the overall production is second-to-none. They provide a deep and reflective breather after the harrowing pre-credits scene — just enough time to for you catch your breath before the action drags you through the film by the lapels.
The main locations — Norway, Italy, London and the fictional island — are stunning (even London, still, somehow). Norway is seen twice: once in the mid-winter and again in presumably late spring, and are so dramatically different in time and essence that an inattentive viewer could easily not realize they are looking at the same location. Italy is gorgeously Italian and provides a playground for the motorcycle and car duel seen in the trailers. Everyone knows what London looks like — still trying to be dignified under all that grime. But it’s the final quarter of the movie in the Evil Base made of Soviet concrete and tidily decorated with “LAIR” Ikea lamps that sells the movie as a Bond movie with a purity of premise and style, hitting the mark perfectly — a mark that may not need to be hit again.
I left the cinema feeling incredibly elated that not only was the film excellent but that it consolidates the Bond legacy. It resolves the racial anxieties that have dogged the fans and finally lays Bond to rest as an unmistakably pro-white cultural achievement. You see, Bond is dead. James Bond is dead. Permanently and irrevocably blown to smithereens. Vaporized. This bold decision has contributing factors from both inside and out of the franchise, but was absolutely the right decision to make. There was a lack of space left within Bond’s character for the series to explore, and the formula of the MI6 Superspy who foils a grotesque nemesis and repeatedly saves the world was all but exhausted. It gives Bond a well-deserved, fantastically well-produced sendoff that ties up loose ends whilst developing him into a more believable and inspiring lead, lest he die off ungraciously in some future, lesser movie. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Bond has been spared the ritual humiliation of ever being canonically made into or cast as someone of the opposite race.
Let’s cover the ways in which No Time to Die is overtly pro-white.
Firstly, Bond has remained white. Daniel “craggy” Craig has proved to be such a capable actor with good looks and believable masculine roughness that he’s managed to hang on for an impressive lengthy tenure as Bond, advancing the character and laying the groundwork for the cinematic blossoming of No Time to Die. Through being the right man for the job, he has avoided being ousted by an Idris Elba or replaced for falling short as an actor. Craig’s Bond is notoriously violent and takes an immense amount of physical punishment whilst retaining human fragility; he escapes through muscle, resilience, bravado, luck, fate, slightly thicker than usual plot armor, and manly charm and wits. All of these are laudable counter-soy character traits that young white men are better off thirstily imbibing from Daniel Craig’s screen presence rather than anyone else’s, especially an actor of another race. By foreclosing this possibility, No Time to Die protects Bond as an explicitly white male role model.
Secondly, when Bond is forced to confront the existential question of what he would truly like to spend his life doing, the answer of course is caring for his daughter and true love. We finally have a sincere rather than carefully distant Bond when it comes to family. The mother of Bond’s child, Madeleine Swann, is a French beauty played by the blonde-and-blue-eyed Léa Hélène Seydoux-Fornier de Clausonne, who has a lavishly apparent Northern European ancestry. Craig’s blue eyes are similarly radiant, and we are treated to plenty of emotionally fraught close-ups. Why is this overtly pro-white? Because Bond’s blue eyes and his daughters’ inheritance of them are repeatedly remarked upon, something very brave of the scriptwriters after the multi-decade headache of “blond and blue-eyed master race” propaganda foisted upon white society.
After being infected with the nano-bot weapon, Heracles, Bond is fated to die for them, as he can never leave the island given that any physical contact with other people would kill them with this fatal, quick-acting viral poison. Similarly, any chain of physical contact between Bond and others they encounter would doom them as well. Bond dies to ensure the safety of Madeleine and his five-year-old daughter, Mathilde. If there is any point to this movie, it’s to stress that Bond doesn’t just die with dignity; he dies heroically, protecting a white woman and his white child, whom we are told in his final moments “really does have your [blue] eyes.”
Thirdly, this personal sacrifice is contextualized and framed as an act of ethnic self-preservation. Heracles, the weapon, is a nano-bot agent that spreads throughout the bloodstream. It’s harmless — or so we’re told –, but if the DNA of the target is a match, it causes immediate fatal blood clotting (sounds familiar). The film explicitly tells us that DNA goes from individuals to “families, certain genetic traits to entire ethnic groups.” To start with, the families of the Spectre agents who touch the bodies of those killed by the Heracles also die immediately. Tanner (M’s assistant) tells Madeleine that it’s “just as well you weren’t related to him [a victim of Heracles], or you’d be dead, too.” Finally, the Russian scientist responsible for reprogramming the weapon tells Nomi (Lashana Lynch) that “with one vial of West African DNA, I could wipe out your entire race!” Cue horrific death by acid bath. Russians who want to exterminate the Negro employees of the Crown are not welcome in Bond world, but it seems neither are social-construct theories of race. Race realists rejoice: The Bond franchise has explicitly flouted even paying lip service to the idea that race is merely a cultural edifice, and insists that race is something that is genetically encoded, and presumably politically relevant. Again, Bond fights and dies to save his racial particularism: his own child carrying his story, a manifestation of himself and Madeleine.
Fourthly, two of the three villains are non-white and seemingly motivated by racial hatred and jealousy. Lyutsifer Safin (awfully close to “Lucifer Satan,” but this is the Bond franchise, so silly names are par for the course) is nominally Russian, but is played by Rami Malek, born to Egyptian immigrant parents and visibly ethnically alien to Bond and Swann. His body and mind are poisoned and his lethal derangement is stressed in his mannerisms. Rami’s large eyes are unhinged and clearly of non-white descent, in contrast to Craig’s sparkling blues. He is obsessed with poison and subjugation, and wants to make the world “a little tidier” by exterminating all of Europe; a computer map shows us that North Africa and Russia are exempt from his scheme.
Safin is first introduced to us in a Japanese Noh mask with narrow slits for eyes that suggest he is Asiatic or Mongolian. Overall, he is presented as mixed Kalergi outsider, a non-white interloper completely foreign to Bond’s white or white-acting cosmopolitan world. Safin is unceremoniously executed by Bond in a scene that delivers no small amount of satisfaction. In the real world, however, the megalomaniacs are not captivating defectives like Safin; they’re freakish nerds like Bill & Bezos. Worse, they don’t need to hide poison from our elected representatives; they just bribe them to make it mandatory for us. 2020 and 2021 have killed the premise of the Bond franchise, making any further films untenable, which is why Safin is all the more fun for being a demented villain with interesting things to say.
Lashana Lynch is the second villain — of sorts. Lynch’s “Nomi” is stunningly unattractive by white standards, and her Negro mannishness is played up. Miss Moneypenny (Naomi Harris) is passing as white and dresses by white standards. In contrast, Nomi, or “007” in the first half of the film, affects a thick Jamaican accent before flipping to a London twang. Her wide shoulders and African facial profile are emphasized by the lighting, and the script specifically calls attention to her short, tight Negro curls, as she takes off a wig (!) when introducing herself to James. She’s as black as it gets, and all this was to court the controversy of a “black James Bond” or “black Double-Oh-Seven.” Why is she a villain? Because she threatens to shoot Bond to his face, and implies to Moneypenny that she wants to kill him. If Nomi were white, this could be downplayed as humor, but there was only the ghost of a chuckle in the audience at this line.
Lynch’s 007 is skin-crawlingly repulsive, embittered and vindictive early on, and given the racial antagonism inside and outside the movie theater, she really might want to kill Bond. She gloats about having taken his 007 number within the service — a pointless “We Wuz Spies n’ Sheit.” It serves no purpose other than to tell the audience that blacks are aggrieved and resentful towards whites, and want to ascend within white institutions merely for the sake of rubbing stolen trappings, titles, and power in white faces.
In a nutshell, the question of a “Black Bond” is summarily dealt with in No Time to Die by casting a “black 007” — who learns that the job, film, and franchise is about the man, his actions, and who he is rather than trite gestures. We’re told repeatedly that the 007 brand is “only a number,” making James — and his ethnicity — irreplaceable. Nomi is there as a placeholder for those who would steal Bond’s legacy, and Bond bests her simply by being the better agent.
Inevitably, and because it’s her job, Nomi becomes a quick ally. She also relinquishes the 007 title in a rather clownish and emotional way, though it seems to be because M has had a stern word with her off-screen, telling her to get along with MI6’s most important employee and to save the Black Power flexing for the diversity seminar. If anything, this is Broccoli and Wilson stealing back the 007 title from agitators seething that they haven’t Blacked Bond yet. After Bond’s death, she appears completely out of place at the little MI6 get-together to mourn his passing, towering over the seated Mallory and wearing midriff-high clown pants from Matalan. The casting of Lynch as an MI6 superspy and Naomi Harris as a civil servant tells us only that the British establishment are helpless Negrophiles who will stuff any and all official positions with whatever blacks they can usher into them — something completely true to life, so it hardly counts as anti-white.
Christoph Waltz’s Ernst Stavro Blofeld makes a delectable return in one of the film’s most arresting scenes. It overwrites the cartoony and buffoonish last third of Spectre with No Time to Die’s more interesting dialogue, where Bond is caught and rendered helpless by Blofeld’s scheming. Notably, Blofeld’s motivations are familial: He is wounded by having been deprived of his father at a young age, having been usurped by the orphaned James. This incarnation of Blofeld is after payback, and world domination is just a side dish. Taking Blofeld as a defective and his upbringing as an inverse of the ideal, he is a cautionary tale about callous parenting and abandonment.
Fifthly, the primal elements underpinning the whole film are children, heritability, and blood poisoning. This is why Blofeld would not be good as the chief antagonist, as he is as white as James and considers Bond a mock-brother. Only a racially alien villain could carry a film whose chief concern is the contamination of blood: an implied rape, forced miscegenation, and racial pollution.
“How do you get it off you?”
“You don’t. You can’t. It’s forever.”
There’s very little of any substance for White Nationalists to complain about here, though it would have been nice if James Bond had managed three or more Scottish-and-French blue-eyed children before passing through the veil to the next life.
Bond’s time and death in No Time to Die is a personal adventure, and these weighty personal concerns overshadow the impersonal and bureaucratic motivation of “saving the world.” The validity of “saving the world” is downplayed. From M’s (Mallory’s) perspective, the weapon, Heracles, threatens the abstract “principles” of “all of this” (a grubby London with a mixed-race bugman slouching past). It is merely “the usual”: the writers cleverly anticipate Bond fatigue and know that we’ve seen all this before, and need to show us something new, something more. The film is so aware that audiences know what to expect that it doesn’t even bother explaining why Safin has a private army. He just does. Or why a henchman has a robot eye. He just does. Or how Bond has immediate access to a high-end car after being rescued floating in the ocean. He just does. This is Bond. C’mon. Audiences are more than familiar with the suave, ultra-competent Bond action hero, and within the Craig cycle are familiar with a Bond who has undergone torture. We have even known a somewhat heartbroken and mopey Bond.
Where to? The answer is to break down a door to a new part of Bond’s character: Bond as a father. It is the weight of the responsibility of fatherhood that puts Bond in his toughest predicament and possibly pushes him past his limits. In Safin’s negotiations with Bond, he holds his daughter as a hostage and Bond is forced to submit. Bond comes across as stumbling and unsure of himself in the dialogue, like a spent old man sickened by a world of villainy he fought but couldn’t break. Daniel Craig was over 50 at the time of filming and there’s no computer-generated efforts to hide this fact. Bond has been ageing and the hard job has taken a toll, despite the rest and recuperation in Jamaica. In the confrontation, Bond comes across as a bag of bones. It was necessary for the writers to explore this part of his character and finally, seemingly, break Bond prior to sending him on his way, lest we part without ever really having gotten to know him. Without this challenge, Bond would remain a forever uninteresting playboy lacking the gravitas and legacy to make the violence meaningful beyond merely “the usual”: a shallow cipher, and one that has already been discussed to death.
However, the emotional fragility could also be a ruse, as it allows Bond to reach for a concealed gun. The ambiguity is both necessary and masterful, as the audience will never know whether Bond really was broken, whether it was a facade, or whether he was merely using his emotions. Saving Madeleine and Mathilde propels Bond through the incredible action scene of hand-to-hand combat and gunplay needed to open the missile silo doors in the finale, filmed in one continuous handycam tracking shot that follows Bond up the stairwell to the control room as he has to shoot and pummel his way through Safin’s henchmen. The directing is technically perfect and eschews flourishes in favor of assisting the action, intimately showing Craig’s Bond taking and dishing out intense punishment in a dynamic, incisive, brutal sequence of gunshots, grapples, and grenade blasts. At one point, Bond hauls a dead man over him as a bullet shield and then throws himself forward up some concrete steps, crawling to the next turning point as he shoots a man dead mere feet away. Without the plot point of a poisoned family, this level of violence would be mere exhibitionism. It is pushing Bond to his limits by blessing him with a five-year-old daughter, making it relatable and real. It leads to the heartbreaking conclusion, where the motivation of having a child — “the most beautiful thing in the world” — gives Bond the dignity to confront death with a smile after a life left incomplete by passing damsels.
There’s other elements to touch and retouch on, like the stunning European locations that provide a snapshot of white civilizational achievements. There’s the lush, hyperborean Scottish forests (passed off as Norwegian) with motorcycles chasing around in them like raptors in Jurassic Park; and the death-defying stunts and breathless car pursuits, one making full use of all the tricks of the Aston Martin. Sentimental squeamishness about violence is headed off by repeated scenes insisting that armed mercenaries cannot be reasoned with and will not stop until they are dispatched, gracefully emphasizing the necessity of tough, masculine men defending civilization and civil society.
The high stakes, impeccable casting and nuanced dialogue bring a maturity to the franchise and elevate No Time to Die beyond many of its predecessors — especially the dud Spectre that squandered Christoph Waltz in rather silly scenes. No Time to Die is a fitting and beautiful conclusion to the Bond series, and James Bond as a whole is a testament to white cinematic ingenuity and storytelling.
I’ll leave the penultimate words to Ernst Stavro Blofeld, who finally gets his revenge in a way that makes sense after failing in Spectre: “I wanted to leave to you what you left me. An empty world. It’s almost enough to make me regret it. Almost.”
There’s no time to die when it comes to protecting those we love and cherish. Without them, it’s an empty world. It’s almost enough to make me regret Bond’s passing. Almost.
Goodbye, James. Thank you for your service.
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