Braless Ana De Armas suffers a wardrobe malfunction as she leaves the No Time To Die afterparty in London
After a Covid-induced 18-month delay, the premiere of No Time To Die – Daniel Craig’s final performance as James Bond – took place at the Royal Albert Hall on Tuesday, with Craig alongside co-stars such as Lashana Lynch, Lea Seydoux and Ana. de Armas to introduce critics and stars alike to the Cary Joji Fukunaga-directed blockbuster.
Brian Viner of the Daily Mail gave Bond’s “bold, tense and explosive” four stars for the 25th time, writing that “the thunderous ovation that shook the room was not misplaced”.
Viner teased an ending that “no one saw coming” and praised No Time To Die as “a triumph,” gushing: “[No Time To Die is] an explosive, tense, daring and above all surprising adventure, playing with our preconceptions about the world’s greatest secret agent and exploring his personal life more intimately than ever before.’
Finally here: After an 18-month delay caused by Covid, the premiere of No Time To Die – Daniel Craig’s final performance as James Bond – took place at the Royal Albert Hall on Tuesday
Four stars: Brian Viner of the Daily Mail gave Bond’s ‘bold, tense and explosive’ 25th outing four stars
Viner focused on the film length of 163 minutes, assuring readers that “the breathless pace rarely slackens.”
Regarding the fact that Craig’s fifth and final performance as Bong was filmed in a post-Time’s Up era, Viner comments, “Now is there a danger that the character will tip too far away from the insensitive ladykiller of yesteryear and become 00-woke? ?
‘Yes there is. But not least of all this exciting film’s performance is that it feels forward-thinking while staying true to Bond’s spirit.’
Viner concluded, “This is a serious movie, and you’ll be really impressed.”
Headman: Daniel, 53, exuded sophistication ahead of his final appearance as James Bond as he walked the red carpet of No Time To Die on Tuesday
Other critics were equally enthusiastic about Craig’s final performance as Bond, with The Guardian awarding the blockbuster five stars and critic Peter Bradshaw praising the film as “surprising, exotically self-aware, funny and confident”.
Empire offered an impressive four stars, calling No Time To Die an “exciting entry” into the 007 universe and urging viewers to “raise a martini” because “it was worth the wait.”
Four more stars came from the Evening Standard, while The Times returned five thanks to Craig’s “extravagantly satisfying” final portrayal of Bond.
The Sun urged viewers to ‘cling on’ to the four-star review, while the BBC also awarded the film five stars: ‘No Time To Die rounds out the Craig era with enormous ambition and confidence.’
The Independent’s Clarisse Loughrey, however, was less pleased when the credits rolled, labeling Craig’s “last hoorah” as “disappointing and strangely anti-climax” before only getting three stars.
Digital Spy was another publication that awarded the film four stars.
Before the screening, Craig chatted with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in the Royal Albert Hall.
Also at the star-studded premiere were Billie Eilish, Rami Malek, screenwriter Phoebe Waller-Bridge, director Cary Joji Fukunaga and Naomie Harris.
It was a long way to Tuesday night’s premiere after the film’s release was delayed several times due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The film was originally slated for an April 2020 release, but was delayed to November before being rescheduled for April 2021 in light of the coronavirus pandemic.
Dazzling: The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge also attended the world premiere of No Time To Die
Looks good! The Duchess of Cambridge seemed as impressed with Daniel’s pink suit as he was with her show-stopping dress
The release date was eventually set for September 30 in the UK, followed by October 8 in the US.
Prior to its release, Daniel and some of his co-star cast members attended the Chris Evans Breakfast Show with Sky to talk about the film.
Daniel, who has starred in five Bond films in fifteen years, told Chris: “After the last one, I thought that was it. I thought, ‘I can’t do this anymore’.
“I rested a little bit and we talked a little bit about what we wanted to do with this last film and how big we wanted to go, and it felt good, and I just got really excited about it, and I can’t wait for people to see it .
Team Bond: Finneas O’Connell, Billie Eilish, Rami Malek, screenwriter Phoebe Waller-Bridge, director Cary Joji Fukunaga, Ana de Armas, Lashana Lynch and Naomie Harris all posed together on the carpet
“I saw a rough draft of it about a month after we finished, which is very rough because there are no special effects or anything like that. When you see that version of it, you just hope and pray that it makes sense, and it did.
“Once you’ve got the effects, and you’ve got the music, Hans Zimmer made the music, and it’s just incredible. The story holds up.’
‘Everyone just delivers brilliant performances, and I think that’s quite special.’
Speaking about the forced delay of the film’s release due to the pandemic, the actor said: “It’s strange with a movie, when you’ve got it out, and you turn it off and you’re like, ‘Woah, I hope that it’s Good.’
Close bond: Naomi Harris and Lashana Lynch shared a joke during the star-studded event ahead of the highly anticipated screening
“But if there’s a two-year gap between finishing and releasing, it makes things even weirder.”
About where he was when he first found out he’d landed the part of Bond: “I was in Baltimore making a movie. And I was at Whole Foods, doing my weekly grocery shopping, wandering around with a cart of food in it, and (producer) Barbara Broccoli was on the phone, and she just said, “On to you, kid.”
“So I grabbed my cart and quietly pushed it down an aisle, walked into the liquor department and bought a bottle of vodka and a bottle of vermouth, a glass and a shaker, took it home and drank it, and then went out and sat in a bar and drank about three more vodka martinis.
“It’s actually very sad when you think about it. But I must have had some kind of look on my face because the bartender kept asking me what was going on and I said, ‘I can’t tell you!’
Release: The release date was finally set for September 30 in the UK, followed by October 8 in the US
Daniel recently spoke about the outdated James Bond storylines of previous films in the franchise – like the idea of glamorous disposable so-called Bond girls.
Speaking to Lorraine Kelly about the spy series – in which the latest film No Time To Die is set to release this week – that “you have to adapt” with the times.
“Sure, a lot of what happened in the earlier movies is a bit questionable now… different times, but we didn’t want to lose the essence [in the new film]. It’s still a Bond movie.
“I’ve been given free rein to influence it, but I’ve never forgotten that. We can have all the important elements and things that people have loved over the years, but you adapt.
About the franchise, Daniel said, “A lot of what happened in the earlier films is a bit questionable now… different times, but we didn’t want to lose the essence. [in the new film]. It’s still a Bond movie
“One of my biggest things is that all the characters, especially the women, have to be brilliant and believable.”
Daniel also told Lorraine that he was overcome with emotion as he shot his final scene as Bond.
“Everyone showed up — all the heads of department came down and I was like, ‘Oh God, I have to give a speech, this is my worst nightmare.’ It all just came out, I was trying to keep it together.
“All those people I’m going to work with every day, especially for this film, the collective effort was so great and meant so much to me that everyone worked so hard on it — that’s what I’ll miss so much.”
Changes: The film was previously scheduled to release on April 2, but the original release would be in April 2020 (Photo Daniel Craig)
No Time To Die is the 25th film in the franchise and finds Bond after leaving active duty and enjoying a quiet life in Jamaica when his old friend Felix Leiter, played by Jeffrey Wright, shows up from the CIA asking for help.
Bond leaves his seemingly happy life with Madeleine (Lea Seydoux) and returns to the field to face Safin (Rami Malek), who is armed with a new dangerous technology that could affect the world.
Producer Barbara Broccoli has already teased what fans can expect, saying the film will deliver a satisfying ending to Daniel’s Bond.
Speaking on the official James Bond podcast, she said: “It’s a culmination of everything his portrayal of the character has been through and it connects all the storylines. It’s quite an epic movie, I must say.’
Daniel took over the role of Bond from Pierce Brosnan in Casino Royale in 2006 and appeared in Quantum of Solace in 2008, Skyfall in 2012, and Specter in 2015.