In Spectre, Craig's rather tortured take on the role, while retaining the grit of the actor's canny interpretation of Ian Fleming's literary conception, relaxes a bit into a suaver sort of self-confidence. He even exhibits a newfound compassion and sense of proportion.
I interviewed Pierce Brosnan in conjunction with his third outing as James Bond, in Michael Apted's The World Is Not Enough, in 1999. Brosnan was alternately charming, erudite, thoughtful and intense during our two hour chat.
According to box-office pundits, A Good Day to Die Hard will be the big box-office winner this holiday weekend. If the predictions hold true, this film confirms the conventional wisdom: People want what's familiar, no matter how hackneyed and repetitive.
"I enjoy getting out in front of the crowds every single night, I enjoy seeing their faces light up and having a good time out there and seeing the smiles on their faces. That's what gives me a thrill now, just getting up there for the live action and just performing."
While there have been some real clunkers among the Bond films, especially during the the charming but not all that nice version played by Roger Moore, the series has endured through generations of fans, with its 24th film coming up.
As the latest Mission Impossible film, a surprise mega-hit, prepares to ease its way out of North American theaters and the newest James Bond continues in production, it's a good reminder of the vitality of the spy film genre in this 50th anniversary year of the Bond film franchise.
Sir Roger Moore has spent the past several years going after those who make their living by force-feeding ducks and geese, often until their livers burst, to create foie gras - French for "fatty liver."