Film / Spectre

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"Welcome, James. It's been a long time. And finally, here we are. What took you so long?"
Franz Oberhauser

The one where James Bond finally gets to fight SPECTRE again.

Spectre is the 24th film in the James Bond franchise, a direct sequel to Skyfall and the second film in a row by the team who made it. The film was released on October 26, 2015, in the UK, November 6 in the US.

After being suspended for an unsanctioned hit in Mexico City, Bond discovers a cryptic message from his past that puts him on the trail of a sinister organisation. While (the new) M battles political forces to keep the Double-0 program alive, Bond peels back the layers of deceit to reveal the terrible truth behind SPECTRE.

Returning staff include Director Sam Mendes and screenwriters Neal Purvis, Robert Wade and John Logan, with Hoyte van Hoytema joining the production team as cinematographer. Returning cast includes Daniel Craig as James Bond, Ralph Fiennes as M, Naomie Harris as Eve Moneypenny, Ben Whishaw as Q, and Rory Kinnear as Bill Tanner. New cast members include Christoph Waltz as villain Franz Oberhauser, Léa Seydoux as Madeleine Swann, Monica Bellucci as Lucia Sciarra, Dave Bautista as Mr. Hinx, and Andrew Scott as Max Denbigh.

Previews: Teaser Trailer, TV spot 1, Official Trailer, TV spot 2, TV spot 3, Final Trailer, TV spot 4, TV spot 5, TV spot 6.

Tropes include:

  • Action Politician: Although M spends most of the film battling political forces, he arms himself along with Bond in the finale as they prepare to take down Max Denbigh and the Nine Eyes program.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Oberhauser is probably the most evil incarnation of Blofeld to date.
  • Adaptation Name Change: In contrast to the original novels and the previous films, Blofeld's real name is revealed to be Franz Oberhauser. "Blofeld" is his mother's maiden name, which he uses after rejecting the name his father gave him.
  • Advertised Extra:
    • Monica Bellucci makes her debut in the 007 franchise as the oldest Bond girl to date. She is in it for literally just five minutes, during which she only goes to bed with Bond and gives him information before he sends her to the U.S. Embassy for her safety.
    • Mr. White's return featured heavily in promotional material, but he only appears in a single scene.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Quantum leader Mr. White is given a bit of backstory and his demise is treated sympathetically.
  • All There in the Script: Mr. Hinx's name is never mentioned on-screen. Neither is Estrella's (the girl seen with Bond in the opening sequence).
  • Aluminum Christmas Trees: The "Nine Eyes" intelligence sharing agreement is presented as a game-changing development. The Five Eyes agreement not only already does this, it has been operational for decades.
  • Analogy Backfire: Oberhauser's facility is housed within a crater formed by a meteor, and he had the meteor itself put on display. When Bond and Swann arrive, he launches into a speech about how the meteor had waited up in space, silently biding it's time, before becoming an unstoppable force that changed the face of the Earth. Bond shoots back that the meteor actually did stop, and right where they're standing, in fact. You can see some of the wind come out of Oberhauser's sails.
  • Animal Motifs: SPECTRE itself is likened to an octopus, as usual. More prominent, however, are birds: Mr White describes Bond as "a kite dancing in a hurricane", one of the love interests' names is Madeleine Swann, Mr. White's cabin becomes home to a murder of crows, and Oberhauser/Blofeld describes Bond as akin to a cuckoo.
  • Antagonist Title: Spectre is the nefarious organization Bond is battling.
  • The Anticipator: Played for creepy effect with Blofeld, who always seems to know when Bond will show up, even outfitting rooms in his Supervillain Lair with personal photographs for his 'guests'.
  • Anti-Climax:
    • The third act is widely regarded as the weakest portion of the movie even by its fans. A leak of the script during the Sony hacking scandal revealed that the studio executives regarded the original ending as even worse (the suppression of an important document, deemed rather boring for the plot of a Bond movie) and the film ended up having five or six writers, one of whom was Daniel Craig himself. Doesn't help that the one we ended up with, a nighttime chase in London between the hero and the leader of the resident Nebulous Evil Organization, which culminates in the latter being captured, while the hero and his allies prevent said organization from gaining control of encrypted data files- was very similar to the finale of Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, released earlier the same year.
    • How Bond and Swann escapes Blofeld's Supervillain Lair also leaves much to be desired. The high-tech restraints on Bond's chair suddenly snap open immediately after Madeleine throws the bomb. It only takes one shot to the conveniently exposed fuel line to blow up the whole compound, while the two escape on a helicopter guarded by only a couple of mooks Bond snipes from afar with ease, even though he had been through some high-level Cold-Blooded Torture mere moments before.
    • Bond's car chase with Hinx. No gunfire, no explosions, and Bond is never in any real danger. The action even stops for a couple minutes so Bond can call up and have a chat with Moneypenny while he's trying to avoid Hinx.
  • Arc Welding: Blofeld claims that SPECTRE was behind the events of Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, and Skyfall (supposedly, as it's entirely possible he was attempting to rattle James). This is a fairly unusual case, because the arc seems to have been unwelded just to weld it back together. Le Chiffre was clearly established as having worked for Quantum (and being killed for being unreliable) in the first two films, but references to those events in this film seem to imply that MI-6 thought they were independent villains. One of Mr. White's lines implies that SPECTRE is Quantum, just after mission drift and a strong change in plans (likely Bond disrupting its leadership). SPECTRE could also plausibly be the organization that was behind the events of Blood Stone as well.
  • Arc Words: Technically they only appear once, in the opening epigraph, but the entire film seems to be themed around the phrase "The Dead Are Alive."
  • Artistic License – Biology: During the torture scenes, the descriptions of what drilling into specific parts of the brain will do are suspect at best. Higher brain functions like facial recognition are spread out over an area, so whether damaging such a tiny area would give the described result is already questionable. Furthermore, even the general area of the brain is all wrong. In the film this is said to be the result when the drill goes into something at the base of the neck. That area in the human brain controls basic functions like motor functions and autonomous muscles. Facial recognition has been mapped around the temple, which was ironically the previous location the drill went. Of course, all that talk might just have been to heighten the victim's horror, as the film itself seems to lampshade this as Bond has no problem recognizing people after his torture. However, this also brings the question of Bond somehow not being incapacitated by the procedure itself. Most people wouldn't be able to function for a while after having something drilled into their head, much less go into action.
  • Artistic License – Geography: Bond drives from London to Rome, a trip that would take at least a full day, in what apppears to be a quarter of that time.
    • The Rome car chase scene is a little strange if you're familiar with the local layout. Note that the cars turn right when they reach the Vatican, right again onto Via dei Corridori, then left onto Via del Mascherino...away from the Tiber. In order to get anywhere near the water, they'd have to immediately circle back towards Castel Sant'Angelo. Even then, the riverside sequence was shot by Ponte Sisto, which is further south.
  • Artistic License – Gun Safety: While trying to instruct a reluctant Madeleine in handgun self-defense, James points his pistol at the wall of the next train compartment over with his finger on the trigger (keeping in mind that compartment walls on a train are about as effective as paper in stopping a bullet). Madeleine exhibits a good deal more sense when she expertly drops the magazine out of the gun, ejects the round in the chamber (!) and points the pistol at the ceiling before pulling the trigger to decock it.
  • Artistic License – Physics: During the opening sequence, the helicopter at one point rises up 90 degrees and does yet another barrel roll in this fashion. While not physically impossible with a properly (and heavily) modified helicopter, there is no indication that the one depicted in the film has been so modified. The helicopter in question is being flown by Chuck Aaron, the only pilot in America licensed to perform such stunts. There is CGI, and artistic license, but that is to do with the elevation of Mexico City - the air is too thin for that sequence. So it was filmed at lower level, and CGI'ed in. Also the close ups of the fight scene were filmed on a static rig (albeit one that could rotate 360'), because obviously those shots were impossible. Aaron said his job was made more difficult by the fact he was having to do the stunts while the stuntmen were fighting in the back.
  • As You Know: M uses it with Bond to relate that British intelligence is in the middle of a big shakeup and a merger with MI5 has already taken place.
  • Apathetic Citizens: When the building is destroyed early in the film, Bond chases a man through the Day of the Dead parade. The parade is still going on as if nothing happened, and the people on the street are still watching the parade as if it's more interesting than the nearby explosion and sound.
  • Award Bait Song: "Writing's on the Wall". A dark, moody, melodramatic ballad akin to "Skyfall." And like "Skyfall", it netted the Golden Globe and the Academy Award for Best Original Song.
  • Back for the Dead: Mr. White returns for a single scene a little into the film, at the end of which he commits suicide.
  • Badass Driver: Both Bond and Hinx demonstrate they are this in their car chase through Rome.
  • Bait and Switch: Played for Laughs when Q showed Bond a Cool Car prototype he has made, and after explaining some of the neat features it has, promptly tells Bond that the car is assigned to 009, and not him. Then subverted when Bond steals the car anyway.
  • Bait-and-Switch Gunshot: Lucia Sciarra walks into her garden. Two menacing figures loom behind her and take aim. She braces herself as we hear two muffled gunshots... and as she turns around and the view clears, we see that Bond has killed them both.
  • Beard of Evil: Mr. Hinx, an assassin for the villainous SPECTRE, has a beard. Most of the heroes, meanwhile, are clean shaven.
  • Beautiful Condemned Building: The finale takes place in the old MI6 building at Vauxhall Cross, which is now abandoned and scheduled for demolition after the attack in Skyfall.
  • Big Bad: Franz Oberhauser AKA Ernst Stavro Blofeld, played by Christoph Waltz, is the main antagonist leading the criminal organization SPECTRE against Bond in this film.
  • Big Bad Duumvirate: While Oberhauser spends most of the film chasing a personal vendetta against Bond, Max Denbigh has been using Oberhauser's funding to lead SPECTRE to create chaos and convince the world powers to link their surveillance efforts into one database that's secretly under SPECTRE's control.
  • Big Brother Is Watching: Unusually for a spy film, this movie is against the concept. If the data from all that surveillance isn't kept secure, than it's a double-edged sword, and since SPECTRE had bankrolled the formation of the Centre for National Security, they have backdoor access to all the data.
  • Big Fancy House: The newly formed Joint Intelligence Service is headquartered in the Centre for National Security, a brand new (and privately funded) skyscraper intended to replace the damaged MI6 building.
  • Bilingual Bonus: After sleeping with Lucia Sciarra and preparing to leave for the SPECTRE meeting, Bond wishes her, "Buona Fortuna, Donna Lucia". Even those who don't know any Italian can decipher that he's wishing her "Good Luck".
  • Bond Villain Stupidity:
    • First, when Oberhauser has Bond at his mercy in his secret base, he then decided to go all Evil Gloating, Break the Badass on both Bond and his girl, and then he'd get to killing Bond after the Cold-Blooded Torture. This gave Bond time enough to make his escape. The second time, he constructs an elaborate Death Trap, giving Bond a choice: escape now on your own, or try to rescue Swann and die together. In the latter case, he was playing on Bond's feelings to get him to fall, but since he was more interested in tormenting Bond rather than killing him, this gave Bond plenty of time to find Swann and then escape.
    • His henchmen aren't too bright either. When they kidnap Bond, they tie his hands in front of him, with plastic zip ties. Sure enough, Bond's able to grab one of their guns and shoot them both, then break free.
  • Bookends: The opening and ending of the film both feature an action sequence involving a Hellish Copter and one of the villains who is trying to flee Bond.
  • Break the Haughty: Mr. White was a Smug Snake in the previous films. Now he's a broken man who knows his remaining days are numbered, and has given up on life.
  • Brick Joke: When Bond encounters Lucia at the funeral, he introduces himself as a life insurance agent for her husband, followed by a question about the typical life expectancy of widows. Later he takes down two SPECTRE agents before they can kill her for knowing too much.
  • Bridal Carry: Bond lifts Madeline in his arms as they make their escape from the Vauxhall building. The symbolism is ramped up by the fact that she's wearing white.
  • The Bus Came Back:
  • Cain and Abel: Franz Oberhauser/Ernst Stavro Blofeld was James Bond's older foster brother, but despised Bond for being a "cuckoo chick in another bird's nest" by becoming his father's favorite. Franz murdered his father and orchestrated all the tragedies in Bond's life as revenge. Played up when Bond and Oberhauser meet with a bulletproof glass pane between them. Oberhauser's reflection is projected almost perfectly over Bond's face, highlighting their visual similarities.
  • Call Back: Events and characters from previous films play a role in Spectre's plot.
    • The Real Life Vauxhall Cross offices of MI6 which Raoul Silva bombed in Skyfall still haven't been rebuilt.
    • Bond is put on the trail of SPECTRE by a video message from the late M as played by Judi Dench, who died at the end of Skyfall.
    • Bond tracks down "Mr. White" from Casino Royale and Quantum to learn more about SPECTRE.
    • Bond encounters portraits of Le Chiffre, Vesper, Silva, M, and Mr. White on the way to his final confrontation with Oberhauser.
  • The Cameo: Judi Dench as M, in a video message to Bond recorded before her death.
  • Canon Character All Along: The villain Oberhauser is revealed to be Bond's old nemesis from the earlier films, Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
  • Cartwright Curse: Traditional for Bond movies (especially in the Craig era), but averted here. This is the first Daniel Craig Bond movie—the first since Licence to Kill, in fact—in which none of the Bond Girls die.
  • Cat Scare: When Bond investigates the Pale King's hideout in Austria, he's spooked by some birds who took shelter in the seemingly abandoned cabin.
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • Bond's brand new Omega Seamaster 300 which Q has rigged to explode upon activating the alarm. He uses it in an attempt to kill Oberhauser/Blofeld and distract his security detail in order to make an escape attempt.
    • Chekhov's Boat and Safety Net too.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Madeleine, who demonstrates significantly more competence with a handgun than she first lets on when Bond attempts to teach her in basic use, while providing some backstory as to how she was trained by her father. Later she uses the same gun against Hinx, giving Bond the edge he needed to finish him off.
  • Chronically Crashed Car: Once again, Bond's Cool Car ends up totalled. Q is less than amused to see that in Bond's words, "I delivered it into the Tiber."
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience:
    • In the climax of the film when Bond is holding Blofeld at gunpoint. M is there dressed in black representing Bond's life as a deceiving and murderous agent for the crown, with Madeleine in the other side dressed in white, representing the chance of a peaceful life away from the death and lies.
    • Madeleine in general, who wears white in all but three of her scenes. Especially her first one, where she herself is clad all in black, indicating that we don't yet know who she's loyal to and symbolizing her initially antagonistic relationship with Bond.
  • Continuity Nod: A number of references to the previous Craig-era Bond films appear.
    • In general:
      • All of the villains from the Craig years are name-dropped and appear in photographs and in the opening credits (save for Dominic Greene).
      • Bond sends Lucia to meet Felix Leiter for protection.
    • Casino Royale:
      • Bond gets a tracking device injected into his arm. They probably went with nanites this time around so the bad guys wouldn't carve it out again.
      • Denbigh and M's confrontation is virtually identical to Bond and Dryden's—takes place in a glass office tower, M surprises Denbigh by lurking in his office, Denbigh attempts to shoot M, only to find that the gun isn't loaded and for M to reveal that he removed the bullets. The only difference is that Denbigh falls to his death after scuffling with M, rather than M shooting him.
      • At the beginning of the movie, in Mexico City, gunshots cause a building to collapse, just like the house collapsing in Venice at the end of this film.
      • Bond uses the same brand of holster he had for his Walther P99 in this film for his PPK in SPECTRE.
      • Bond quits his career to be with the woman he loves.
      • Bond ditches the minor, tertiary Bond Girl (or perhaps, just simply opts out of Round Two) to carry out a mission.
      • Bond is tied to a chair and tortured by the villain.
      • Bond has a conversation in a train with his Love Interest.
      • Bond performs a Railing Kill after his cover is blown at the SPECTRE meeting. In this film, he did the same thing to Obanno's lieutenant in the stairwell fight.
      • Vesper Lynd's name comes up multiple times. Bond finds Mr. White's "interrogation" video of her in Tangiers.
    • Quantum of Solace:
      • An extended sequence late in the film takes place in a facility in the middle of a desert (in Bolivia in QoS, Morocco here).
      • M ignores orders and deliberately helps out Bond, echoing his predecessor's "He's my agent, and I trust him" attitude.
      • Bond once again spends the climax hunting for the Big Bad with a non-standard gun, before being forced to rescue the Girl of the Week from an explosion.
      • The Supervillain Lair (okay, it was a hotel in Quantum, but still) is destroyed thanks to a chain reaction from a seemingly minor explosion.
      • Assuming Bond has come to kill him, Mr. White simply asks him, "make it quick", precisely what Vesper' s duplicitous lover said to him.
      • Blofeld crawling away from the wrecked helicopter in the climax is near-enough what Greene did in the climax of QoS after accidentally swinging an axe into his foot.
    • Skyfall:
      • Bond is again evaluated by a psychologist, and he isn't taking this one too seriously, either.
      • Another Did They or Didn't They? scene between Bond and Moneypenny.
      • Mallory/M gets to get into the action once again.
      • Bond's allies are forced to watch helplessly as a building he's presumably in is blown to bits.
      • The Big Bad uses an Animal Metaphor for himself and Bond. Silva used rats, Oberhauser uses the cuckoo bird. Also, in Tangiers, Bond also gets tipped off, or "ratted out", to Mr. White's lair by the presence of a rat.
      • As mentioned in the Musical Nod post, the soundtrack is very similar, with several pieces of music reappearing.
      • When Madeleine quips about the possibility of accidentally shooting Bond, he quips right back, "Well, it wouldn't be the first time.", clearly referencing when Moneypenny did so.
      • One of the lyrics in the theme song claims, "a storm is coming", precisely what Bond said to M as they traveled towards Skyfall.
  • Cool Car:
    • The Aston Martin DB10, which was custom made for the film.
    • The car park outside the SPECTRE meeting is full of them, especially Mr. Hinx's Jaguar CX75, a discontinued hybrid electric Super Prototype with a F1-inspired engine that can generate 750 BHP.
    • In the alps, SPECTRE uses a pair of "Big Foot" Defender Land Rovers modified with 37-inch off-road tires and winch, and a SVR Range Rover equipped with V8s that can accelerate from 0 to 62 mph in 4.5 seconds. They're also armored, which proves useful when Bond lets loose several 9mm rounds from the handgun he appropriated from one of the fallen SPECTRE team members.
    • Bond's old DB-5 is being rebuilt in Q's workshop and is ready for Bond to drive off in at the end.
  • Cool Guns:
    • Mr. Hinx is armed with (in its possible first appearance in any media to date) the unique AF2011 Dueller Prismatic handgun, an Italian-made M1911A1 clone which also happens to be one of the few working double-barreled pistols on the market. In the Alps, he uses it to blast two massive holes in a plane Bond is chasing him in.
    • In the pre-credits sequence, Bond uses an Arsenal Firearms LCR2 equipped pistol, a special conversion shroud which increase the range of a weapon and allows you to attach scopes and laser aiming modules to create a compact, short ranged sniper rifle.
    • In Austria, Bond uses a Heckler and Koch VP9 handgun, one of the newest pistols made by the company in 2015.
  • Cosmopolitan Council: SPECTRE. Their meeting in Italy is similar to the UN, with organization representatives from each nation announcing their progress whilst others listen with the aid of translators.
  • Country Matters: M tells Max Denbigh he knows what the C stands for: Careless.
  • Cover Drop: The early poster with a bullet hole in the shape of SPECTRE's octopus comes up in the movie itself once Bond tries to shoot Blofeld, and finds out bulletproof glass is between them.
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: Funnily enough, Bond plays this trope when he overhears the voice of a young man on the line while in a phone conversation with Moneypenny, who is in her apartment at a time when most people would be sleeping.
  • Creator Cameo: Director Sam Mendes as the priest conducting the funeral service.
  • Damsel in Distress: Dr. Swann, both in the chase scene after her introduction and in the climax of the film, both on behalf of Oberhauser.
  • Darker and Edgier: SPECTRE to Quantum. Depending on the interpretation (the film supports both), it's either the warped version of Quantum or its bosses. Either way, Quantum was into Pragmatic Villainy, manipulating leaders and natural resources to secure profit and influence for its network. SPECTRE is explicitly involved with bombing cities, human trafficking and other more overt methods. Profit's still in mind, but in a messier, darker way.
  • Dead Man Writing: M's video message to Bond.
  • Death from Above:
    • At one point Bond appears to do this with a plane he pilots in Austria. Specifically he uses it to pull off a vehicle interdiction by crashing it into the Land Rovers SPECTRE is using.
    • Related to Disney Villain Death, C falls to his death after being hit off balance by shattered glass falling on him from above.
  • Death Glare: M gets to deploys several of these. First at Bond, then at C. Repeatedly. C returns one to M in the form of a Kubrick Stare while revealing he spied on a conversation between Bond and Moneypenny regarding Mr. White.
  • Deadpan Snarker:
    • M proves to be this, in the style of the Bernard Lee version of the character. Even Tanner is on the receiving end, for once.
    • Bond too:
      Lucia: How can you talk like this? Can't you see I'm grieving?
      Bond: No.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Madeleine. When we first see her in Austria, she's cold and frosty towards Bond, and outright (though justifiably) angry with him after his rescue of her nearly gets her killed. As they head to Tangiers a few scenes later, she begins to warm up to him. See Empathic Environment below.
  • Determinator:
    • Once Mr. Hinx is after you, he just doesn't stop coming.
    • Mr. White is dying from thallium poisoning. According to Bond, he should have died weeks earlier, but stayed alive out of concern for Madeleine.
  • Deus ex Machina: At least two.
    • Bond and Swann escape Blofeld's Supervillain Lair with surprisingly little effort, thanks to an exposed fuel pipe and the guard's sparse number and unwillingness to shoot straight.
    • In the collapsing MI6 headquarters, Bond and Swann also escape rather easily thanks to a safety net and a speedboat that has no business being there. Though both of them were shown previously in the scene.
  • Did They or Didn't They?: Bond and Moneypenny, once again. When she arrives at his apartment, he's fully dressed. After she leaves, he's in his robe.
  • Disney Villain Death: Several characters are subjected to this, notably Sciarra and Denbigh. The former falls from a helicopter, the latter from his own HQ.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Oberhauser/Blofeld is disturbingly calm throughout the entire film, as are the various SPECTRE meetings he conducts.
  • Do a Barrel Roll: The helicopter in Mexico City does many of them.
  • Doesn't Like Guns: Subverted in Madeliene's case. She openly disapproves of guns and the men using them (which is likely one of the reasons why she doesn't like Bond at first) but knows how to use one which she does at one point to save Bond. As a child she shot an assassin who was after her father with a Beretta 9mm hidden in a kitchen cupboard, which seems to have been what triggered her dislike of them.
  • The Dragon:
    • Mr. Hinx, a Professional Killer and high ranking operative who answers directly to the SPECTRE leadership. The Brute who can give Bond a run for his money, not unlike Oddjob or Jaws.
    • Max Denbigh serves as this at a political level. Bond even describes him as Blofeld's Evil Chancellor at one point.
  • Dramatic Pause: Bond uses this between the 'James' and the 'Bond' of the classic The Name Is Bond, James Bond line, giving it a twist.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: For the first time in the Daniel Craig movies, the Bond girl actually gets to stay with Bond and also survives to the end of the movie.
  • Ejection Seat: Played with. Counter to the usual Bond film expectation, James uses it exactly as intended, as an emergency evacuation device for himself. Also averted in the classic DB5 when Bond is holding the shifter. He pauses for a moment, and Swann glances at him. Remember that there is a red button in the shifter knob.
  • Empathic Environment: Bond and Madeleine meet in cold and snowy Austria and she's equally cold and frosty to him. Their relationship thaws as they head to much-warmer Tangiers, peaking with them consummating it the night before they get off the train in the middle of the desert.
  • End of an Age: After the death of Judi Dench's M in Skyfall, Vauxhall Cross' destruction seems to solidify the end of an age beginning with GoldenEye.
  • Enemy Mine: Bond joining forces with Mr. White. They both want revenge against Oberhauser, even if Bond himself doesn't know it at the time, which puts them on the same side.
  • Epic Tracking Shot: The opening minutes of the film were effectively a single take, though the DVD featurette on the subject acknowledges some "sleight of hand" in this. Becomes epic when the camera view appears to segue from being ground-level crane-based to hand-held to rooftop crane-based without a cut.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Mr. White fought his impending death as long as possible to ensure the safety of Madeleine, his daughter.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Mr. White had no problem destabilizing governments, funding terrorism and murdering countless people in the previous films, but tells Bond he abandoned SPECTRE after they started dabbling in the sex trade, preying on women and children. Bond calls White out on his claiming the moral high ground after his own past actions.
  • Evil Counterpart:
    • Oberhauser/Blofeld to M. Even his outfit in Morocco, a loose (in fit and nature) call back to Pleasance's Nehru jacket, matches up with the wardrobe Judi Dench's M favored.
    • Oberhauser also plays the "we're not so different, you and I" card with Bond.
  • Evil Is Petty: Blofeld's entire motivation for what he does to James is because his father began to treat James as a son, which he saw as taking attention away from him.
  • Evil Power Vacuum: Bond destroying much of Quantum's leadership in Quantum of Solace led to it either being reorganized into or superseded by SPECTRE.
  • Eye Poke: Mr. Hinx rams his index fingers into Bond's eyes when they're trying to kill each other on the Morocco train.
  • Eye Scream:
    • One of Oberhauser's mooks is subjected to this when challenged for the right to replace Sciarra in SPECTRE by Mr. Hinx.
    • As Oberhauser is torturing Bond, the third sequence of needles are pointed right at Bond's eyes. The watch bomb goes off just before they connect, but still...
    • Oberhauser/Blofeld himself loses an eye and gets the scar from You Only Live Twice when the watch bomb goes off at his base.
  • Face Death with Dignity: After Lucia Sciarra attends her husband's funeral, she knows that his old associates will kill her because She Knows Too Much. After getting home she walks into the mansion's courtyard and calmly prepares to be shot in the back by two assassins before Bond saves her.
  • Fake-Out Fade-Out: The movie ends with Bond and Madeleine walking away from the chaos. . .no, there's still one last scene of Bond visiting Q to retrieve his car, and then he and Madeleine depart.
  • False Flag Operation: Every nation mentioned to have suffered a terrorist incident in the time frame of the film is either a member of or fairly close to a member nation of the council that is voting on the Nine Eyes program. When South Africa vetoes the program, they suffer a terrorist incident that makes them reconsider their position within a matter of days. This is because SPECTRE wants the Nine Eyes system to go live, as C is providing them with backdoor access.
  • Final Battle: One occurs with Blofeld, his men, and C in London, ranging from the CNS building to the ruins of MI6.
  • Finger Twitching Revival: How the film reveals that Mr. Hinx survived being thrown through his Range Rover's windscreen.
  • Forced to Watch: Oberhauser forces Madeleine to watch Bond tortured by a Mind Probe, and before that, shows her the recording of her father's conversation with Bond before shooting himself. Subverted in the latter case, as Bond manages to get her to look at him instead of the screen.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • When she's about to pass out from drinking too much, Madeleine jokingly observes that there are two James Bonds. Which hints at his relationship with the villain.
    • At the Rome SPECTRE conference, multiple members of the board are attempting to justify funding for their ventures due to the "surveillance initiative", which foreshadows the true nature of the op Blofeld is running with C.
    • South Africa being bombed right after they reject C's plan is another tip off. If you've seen Sherlock, you might just suspect C anyways, as he plays Moriarty there.
    • Early on in the film, as Bond is taken to the new Q Branch, he passes by the Vauxhall Cross office, which Tanner mentions is set to be demolished. It is at the climax of the film when Blofeld takes control of the demolition charges with his own detonator and tries to bring the place down on 007 and Madeleine Swann.
    • M gives a speech wherein he states that glass will inevitably break and leave pieces behind as he is announcing the end of the 00 program per C's influence. At the climax, M's fight with C leads to glass shattering above their heads. C slips on the glass shards and falls to his death.
    • M explains to C that a man having a license to kill also means having a license not to kill. At the end of the movie Bond decides to spare Blofeld's life.
    • In the same scene as above, he asks C if he's ever actually killed anyone in person (as Bond and M both have). C doesn't answer, and can't meet his eye. He gives it the ol' college try in the climax.
    • Oberhauser uses a variant of the "No, Mr. Bond, I expected you to die," line, and possesses a Right-Hand Cat, which hints at his actual identity. The viewer might be tricked into thinking it's merely a Call Back to earlier films, though...
    • M explains to Q that the tracker that allows them to follow Bond's movements also allows C to follow Bond's movements. This would explain how Mr. Hinx is always able to find where Bond is going, as C is working with Blofeld.
    • The photo Bond looks at in his apartment features him as a boy with the older Oberhauser and the face of the other boy has been burned away. Not only hints at the villain's past with Bond (and the whole photo is seen later in Blofeld's base), but also the damage that will occur to Blofeld's face when the watch blows up.
    • When Mr Hinx reaches the corpse of Mr White, he looks up at the security camera mounted on the wall behind the man and smiles. This foreshadows Oberhauser revealing that he managed to hack the camera and acquire the footage of White's suicide from said camera.
    • The opening shot of the film. The epigraph "The Dead Are Alive." It foreshadows everything, from Judi Dench's cameo as M, Mr. White's condition, Mr. Hinx surviving the car crash, Oberhauser being alive twice, and Bond escaping Vauxhall Cross.
    • Q mentions that he has two cats. Oberhauser has one.
    • The opening credits feature Bond and Madeleine falling through the air, which is how they escape the rigged Vauxhall building.
  • Free-Fall Romance: Between Bond and Madeleine during the opening credits.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: When Bond gazes at the memorial wall of MI6, one of the names visible is "Emma Pill". Ironically, this was completely unintentional, as the names are that of the crew members (Emma Pill was location manager), but needless to say, the similarity has most viewers convinced it's a Shout-Out to The Avengers.
  • Freudian Excuse: Bond had been taken in by Oberhauser's father in the wake of his parents' death and Bond and the elder Oberhauser quickly formed a close relationship. Franz quickly grew jealous of the younger boy, comparing him to a cuckoo,note  and killed his own father before starting a new life as Ernst Stavro Blofeld, using his mother's lineage to hide his identity.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Oberhauser.
  • Get It Over With:
    • Bond to Blofeld regarding his impending torture—"Nothing could be as painful as listening to you talk."
    • Blofeld tells Bond to kill him when both his plot is foiled and his attempted escape thwarted. Bond hesitates, but ultimately puts down his gun and lets Blofeld be taken in alive.
    • Also said by Mr. White, who assumed Bond was a SPECTRE hitman coming to finish him off.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
  • Gilligan Cut: Swann and Bond defeat Hinx, then Swan asks forcefully "What do we do now?" Cue Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex
  • Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex: Between Bond and Madeleine after the fight with Mr. Hinx on the train.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Bond deliberately invokes this when in front of Madeleine, Oberhauser plays the surveillance footage of Mr White shooting himself.
  • Government Agency of Fiction: After the events of Skyfall, both MI5 and MI6 have been merged to form the Joint Intelligence Service, headed by Max Denbigh.
  • Greater Scope Villain: Oberhauser/Ernst Stavro Blofeld claims to have been involved in every attack on Bond in the Daniel Craig era thus far.
    Oberhauser/Blofeld: It was me, James. The author of all your pain.
  • Gun Struggle: Between M and C. Noticeably neither party gets shot, instead the stray bullets bring shattered glass falling down on them, which causes the Disney Villain Death.
  • Hand Cannon: Mr. Hinx's double barreled .45 caliber pistol. It leaves some rather sizable holes in the fuselage of the plane Bond was flying while chasing after him.
  • Handy Cuffs: During the final act, when Bond is abducted by Blofeld's goons, they not only cuff his hands in front of him, they do it with plastic ties, leaving him not only able to shoot them both, but easily break free.
  • Hellish Copter:
    • The pre-credits sequence involves Bond trying to kill a man in an out of control helicopter hurtling over the skies of Mexico City. The copter even does several barrel rolls.
    • In the film's climax, Bond manages to plink a twin-engine helicopter a few times with a small handgun, which causes both engines to burst into flames, sending it crashing down.
  • Hijacked by Ganon: SPECTRE and their boss Blofeld were the Man Behind the Man for Quantum and Raoul Silva, the villains of the previous Craig-era movies. Interestingly, this is James Bond's first time facing SPECTRE in this timeline, making it only a meta-example.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: The CNS building (C's headquarters) has a nearly all-glass atrium with a rotary glass stairwell. This easily shatters when bullets from M's gun hit it during a struggle between him and C and shards of glass raining down on them sends C to his Disney Villain Death
  • Holding Hands: Bond and Madeline, on the way to Oberhauser's lair, after she confides in him that she's scared. Then again at the end, as they walk away from the chaos.
  • How the Mighty Have Fallen:
    • When we meet Mr. White, he's a broken and disheveled man living in a cabin deep in the Austrian countryside desperately fearing for his life, a far cry from the Smug Snake Magnificent Bastard he was in the first two Craig films. Though Bond does later acknowledge that it takes some talent to successfully hide out for as long as he has.
    • Oberhauser's entire plan was ultimately to force this trope on Bond via Trauma Conga Line. Instead, Bond turns things around by wrecking Oberhauser's primary base of operations, depriving him of his resources and network, leaving him battered and at the mercy of the British government, then refuses to kill him, instead letting him get a view of Bond and Madeleine having earned their happy ending.
  • I'll Take That as a Compliment: Said word-for-word by C when M confronts him about the deactivation of the Double-O program; M isn't amused.
    M: You're a cocky little bastard, aren't you.
    C: [laughs]...I'll take that as a compliment.
    M: I wouldn't.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: Pretty evident during Bond and Madeleine's escape from the SPECTRE base in Morocco, where Bond mows down Mooks left and right without getting so much as a scratch. Particularly noticeable since when Bond breaks cover he steps completely out into the open rather than lean out from behind cover.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills:
    • Bond manages to One-Hit Kill a mook at a range of over a hundred yards. With a submachine gun. With iron sights. Clearly, Bond has recovered from his wounds received in Skyfall.
    • Bond manages to shoot down Blofeld's helicopter with only a few shots of his Walther PPK from a few hundred metres away, at night time, from a moving boat. That said, he has to expend two different pistols to do it, and he is clearly taking his time aiming up the last shot.
  • Improvised Weapon: When cornered on the train out of Tangier, Bond attempts to drive Mr Hinx off by chucking a candle in his direction which sets the man's dinner jacket alight and takes swipes at him with a wine corkscrew, none which deter the man for long.
  • Ironic Echo: To Mr. White's "We have people everywhere" taunt. Oberhauser does as well to the extent that it has forced Mr. White into hiding.
  • Irony: In the classic sense. Bond assumes Blofeld is dead after the SPECTRE base explodes... but viewers saw cars fleeing the explosion as Bond flew away in the opposite direction.
  • It's Always Mardi Gras in New Orleans: Bond is in Mexico City, so of course, it's Día de Muertos. On a meta-level, the film does come out within a week of the holiday.
  • It's Going Down: Along with the old MI6 being a Beautiful Condemned Building ("It will cost less to destroy than to rebuild it!"), a Mexican building and an intricate SPECTRE African facility all enter this trope. But averted with the new Joint Intelligence Service building, aside from a few glass panes.
  • It's Personal: Bond's mission is as much about uncovering secrets from his own past as it is about finding and defeating SPECTRE. Turns out that's also SPECTRE's overall scheme. Every scheme and plot that SPECTRE has is revealed to be just another way to give Oberhauser a chance to mess with Bond.
  • It Works Better with Bullets:
    • M calls out Denbigh on his carelessness, after the latter tries to shoot him without checking if his gun is still loaded (the bullets are all in M's hand).
    • The DB10 comes with all the expected gadgets, but because Bond has stolen it from Q, it isn't fully armed yet.
  • Jurisdiction Friction: Between the remnants of MI6 and the newly formed Joint Intelligence Service it is now a part of.
  • Laser Sight: Bond has a laser module on his weapon in the opening sequence, but it's actually a laser microphone that he uses to listen in on a conversation and he's using iron sights to aim. He's spotted when the mooks spot the beam in a cloud of cigarette smoke.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: If you haven't yet watched Skyfall and don't want the ending spoiled, you might want to stay away from this film until you have.
  • Laughing at Your Own Jokes: Q cracks up at his own joke when he tells Bond that he asked to bring the Aston Martins in one piece and not bringing back one piece.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Oberhauser's "It's been a long time. And finally, here we are." is as much about SPECTRE returning to the Bond franchise as James and Oberhauser/Ernst Stavro Blofeld being reunited.
  • Lock and Load Montage: Bond and M get a low-key for the trope but epic one as they prepare to go rogue in order to bring down C. Madeleine, the audience surrogate, watches on in a mix of awe and shock as they lock and load.
  • Made of Explodium: Bond blows up a gas canister in SPECTRE's Moroccan base in the middle of a firefight. As he and Swann escape, the entire base blows up behind up behind them because of a chain reaction that was apparently caused by this (so far as the audience can see, at least). It's probably the most fragile evil base a Bond villain has ever had. Meta-note: This scene set a new world record for the most explosives used in one scene in a Hollywood film. None of it was CGI.
  • Made of Iron: Bond, of course. After a fight that would have sent any other man to the hospital, he's healthy and invigorated enough for sex with Madeleine. Madeleine herself takes a couple of solid shots from the man-mountain they fought, but she, also, doesn't end up with so much as a bruise. Bond suffers no ill-effects from his later torture, either.
  • Meaningful Echo: Bond's train conversation about his life with Madeleine Swann mirrors his conversation on a train with Vesper Lynd years earlier in Casino Royale.
  • Meaningful Name: SPECTRE. Not just the name of the evil organization that Bond is contending with, but the film is about Bond battling the ghosts of his past.
  • Men Can't Keep House: One of the implications from Bond's apartment. He's lived there for months and hasn't unpacked. He's surprised that Moneypenny finds it odd.
  • Mood Whiplash: One moment, Bond and Madeleine are having a quiet pre-dinner drink; the next, Mr. Hinx has entered the scene and they're fighting for their lives. A few short minutes later, Hinx is dead for good and our protagonists are about to have Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Monica Belluci in a merrywidow, complete with garters.
  • Musical Nod:
    • The second trailer features brief snippets of the themes to Thunderball and On Her Majesty's Secret Service.
    • The film's soundtrack is very similar to that of Skyfall, explicitly reusing several pieces of music—"Grand Bazaar, Istanbul", "Voluntary Retirement", "Severine". Fitting, as Thomas Newman composed both.
  • Mythology Gag: A number of references to the pre-Craig era of Bond appear.
    • In general:
      • The film begins with the classic Bond Gun Barrel opening.
      • Oberhauser is introduced in a similar manner to the original SPECTRE Number 1, with his face heavily obscured. This is because he's this timeline's version of Number 1, Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
      • The gunshot hole seen in the film's poster is shaped like SPECTRE's octopus insignia in the earlier James Bond films.
      • The film concludes with Bond Riding into the Sunset with the Bond Girl. Standard procedure for Bond films but noticeably absent from the Craig era so far—in four films, this is the first time it's happened.
    • Dr. No:
      • Bond and the Bond Girl are given luxe accommodations and properly sized clothing in the villain' s lair.
      • Oberhauser at one point wears a darker version of Dr. No's (and Blofeld's) Nehru jacket.
      • Oberhauser's lair contains a number of real-life stolen paintings, just like Dr. No's.
    • From Russia with Love:
      • A familiar white cat is seen in Oberhauser's base.
      • A Rolls Royce Silver Wraith is used to transport Bond to a location like in this film.
      • The chess board between Bond and Mr. White might refer to the chess tournament.
      • Bond kills The Dragon of SPECTRE with a length of cord. In FRWL it was Red Grant's garrote wire, and here it's some rope.
      • A boat chase which has Bond being pursued by SPECTRE, with the Bond girl driving at one point.
      • Bond rides on a train styled after the Orient Express and engages in a brawl with SPECTRE's Dragon devoid of any music...
    • Goldfinger (the film):
      • ...while wearing a white tuxedo, as he did in Goldfinger's pre-title sequence. Also, the film's opening in Mexico recalls the same sequence in terms of geographical location.
      • Mr. Hinx, Obenhauser's henchman, has a personality and an overall appearance similar to Oddjob.
      • Bond drives a "fully loaded" Aston Martin including an ejector seat.
      • The 1948 Rolls Royce Silver Wraith that arrives to pick up Bond and Swann in Morocco is visually similar to the 1937 Rolls Royce Phantom III model used by Goldfinger.
      • Bond sees a henchman (Hinx) rushing to attack him by seeing the man's reflection in an object.
      • Scenes from the movie play out during the opening credits.
    • Goldfinger (the book):
      • In the opening of the book, Bond mused about having been in Mexico City and having killed there a man in a white suit with his bare hands. He does exactly that in at the beginning of the film.
    • Thunderball:
      • The funeral service bears resemblance to the one at the start of this film.
      • Snippets of the theme are heard throughout one of the trailers.
      • During the climax, Blofeld is blind in one eye, like as Emilio Largo.
      • The SPECTRE board meeting runs a little bit deadly for one of the participants.
      • Sam Smith is the first British male soloist to sing a Bond theme song since Tom Jones.
    • You Only Live Twice (book):
      • Oberhauser/Blofeld threatens Bond with a brain penetration injury that will remove his ability to recognise faces. At the end of the original novel of YOLT, Bond is amnesiac thanks to injuries he received.
    • You Only Live Twice:
      • Oberhauser at one point wears a darker version of Blofeld's (and Dr. No's) Nehru jacket.
      • Oberhauser gets the trademark scar Donald Pleasence's version of the character had, thanks to an exploding watch.
      • SPECTRE's new Morocco compound is based in a geological crater like its facility in YOLT.
    • On Her Majesty's Secret Service:
      • Another alpine chase—Bond crashing his plane through a mountain barn is similar to the car chase Tracy and Bond were in to escape Blofeld's men at the base of Piz Gloria.
      • Bond infiltrates a mountaintop health clinic that's only accessible by cable car—the establishing shots are virtually identical.
      • A father tied to a criminal organization asks Bond to protect his daughter (who can also defend herself), and Bond ends up falling in love with her.
      • The movie ends with Bond and his love interest driving off in a car, although she isn't shot at the end. According to some sources, this Riding into the Sunset ending was supposed to be the original ending for OHMSS, with its outcome being on the pre-credits sequence of Diamonds Are Forever. However, when George Lazenby announced he was leaving the franchise, the ending was changed to fit the source novel.
      • Like Thunderball, some elements of this movie's theme song have been heard in the soundtrack.
      • One of the love interests is a grieving, death-focused widow with criminal ties.
      • Spectre features footage of past Bond films in its opening credits, like On Her Majesty's Secret Service did.
    • Diamonds Are Forever:
      • A henchman gets his dinner jacket set on fire but this time Hinx manages to take it off in time before the flames consume him.
      • Bond's "conversation" with a rodent.
    • Live and Let Die:
      • In the teaser poster, Daniel Craig is dressed in a black turtleneck similar to the one Roger Moore wore during the film's climax.
      • Moneypenny visits Bond at his apartment (which also refers to Skyfall, where it was mentioned).
      • The skeleton and top hat costume that Bond dons in Mexico is inspired by one of Baron Samedi's outfits.
      • Bond's fight with Hinx, then making love with Madeline resembles his fight with Tee Hee (whose death is echoed in Hinx's), then joining Solitaire in bed.
    • The Man with the Golden Gun:
      • Once again, Bond is in a vehicle that is doing a barrel roll. Only this time, it's in a nearly out of control helicopter. Thankfully, there's no slide whistle to be heard.
      • At one point, Blofeld's trap for Bond in London looks very much like a Darker and Edgier version of Scaramanga's funhouse.
      • The Bond Gun Barrel opening has Bond wearing a business suit rather than a tuxedo for the first time since this film.
    • The Spy Who Loved Me:
      • Bond ventures to Austria, where TSWLM opened.
      • A train fight with The Dragon capped off by some celebratory sex.
      • Bond kills a man in the opening sequence... and later seduces the man's bereaved lover.
      • The wordless, menacing, indefatigable Hinx is very reminiscent of Jaws, even having a metal prosthetic.
      • An aircraft flies alongside a road, pursuing a car, and the controllers of both exchange nasty looks and gunfire (though this time the good guy's in the plane while the bad guy's driving).
      • Bond has to rescue the imprisoned Bond Girl with only a few minutes before an explosion.
      • Bond's car from Q Branch ends up in a body of water. This time, of course, the car does not survive.
    • Moonraker:
      • The Day of the Dead parade scene appears to have similar composition to the Rio De Janeiro Carnival.
    • Octopussy and The Living Daylights:
      • Oberhauser is the surname of James Bond's murdered ski instructor and father figure from the short story "Octopussy".
      • Bond heads off to meet a fugitive who helped cause the death of someone dear to him and whom later kills themselves.
    • For Your Eyes Only (book):
      • The name on the door of the safe house is taken from The Hildebrand Rarity, one of the short stories in that book.
    • For Your Eyes Only (movie)
      • Like FYEO, the film opens with an extended helicopter sequence over a city.
      • Q being stalked by henchmen while on a ski lift, saved only by the presence of unsuspecting bystanders is virtually identical to Bond's sequence in FYEO.
      • The helicopter sequence over London involving Blofeld; while SPECTRE as a whole hasn't been referenced since Diamonds Are Forever in 1971, an unidentified Blofeld appeared in the teaser for For Your Eyes Only and finally suffered the Disney Villain Death in it.
    • A View to a Kill:
      • The helicopter used in the pre-titles sequence is the same model as the one used in the other film's pre-titles sequence.
      • Bond wears a white dinner jacket for the first time since this film.
      • The finale where Blofeld is arrested by M takes place on a bridge.
    • The Living Daylights:
      • A portion of the film is set in Austria, another in Tangiers.
      • One of Bond's outfits while in Morocco is an updated-for-2015-tailoring version of his outfit in Tangier.
      • Madeleine Swann is the first blonde primary Bond Girl since Kara Milovy. (Both sport bob haircuts, incidentally)
      • Bond casually parachuting in front of a bystander is similar to the ending of TLD's opening sequence.
      • Like in this film, the antagonist of SPECTRE is detained by the authorities.
    • Licence to Kill:
      • Bond sneaking onto the roof in a Latin American country across from a target while on "vacation" borrows heavily from Bond's plan to kill Franz Sanchez—the sequence even features the same hotel used in the earlier film.
      • Q spends a decent portion of the film in the field, helping Bond.
      • Bond going rogue after being suspended.
      • One of Bond's gadgets is an exploding watch, much like the (unused) exploding alarm clock Q gives Bond in this film.
      • Bond going up against a villain named Franz that's Not So Different from him.
      • Oberhauser owns a pet reptile just like Sanchez.
    • GoldenEye:
      • Sam Smith's theme song is named "Writing's on the Wall", which was the joke Bond made with Q about the exploding pen.
      • Bond has to race to disarm or escape the blast radius of a bomb that has a timer of three minutes.
      • The detonator (timer) for the explosives is very similar to the one that bond uses to destroy the Soviet facility (after jumping off the dam).
      • In both films, Bond expresses surprise at Moneypenny having male company for the evening, and is rebuked with the fact that this is actually the sort of thing ordinary people do routinely.
      • The Big Bad discusses Bond's past as an orphan, being revealing how much he resents him for growing up well despite losing his parents at a young age.
      • Bond concludes the opening sequence by just barely managing to pull a plummeting aircraft out of a dive.
      • Bond sees a henchman coming to attack him by seeing his reflection in an object.
    • Tomorrow Never Dies:
      • Bond and the Bond Girl try to escape the Big Bad by taking a risky plunge from a building.
    • The World Is Not Enough:
      • The Vauxhall Cross building blows up and Bond is in pursuit on a speedboat motoring down the Thames, albeit briefly, which recalls the Cold Open of this film.
      • The marina beneath the MI6 building where Bond steals Q's fishing boat is briefly seen in the finale of this film.
      • The Big Bad commits Patricide and honours the mother's side of the family.
      • Bond is tied to a chair and tortured by the villain.
      • When Oberhauser/ Blofeld claims he's holding Madeleine prisoner in the doomed building, Bond snarls, "You're bluffing", precisely what he said when Renard threatened Elektra.
    • Die Another Day
      • The car chase in Rome, with Bond in an Aston Martin being chased by The Dragon in a prototype Jaguar, calls back to the chase with Zao in Iceland. Both chases also have a staircase used as a makeshift road at some point.
      • A employee of British intelligence is working as an asset of the Big Bad willingly.
    • Colonel Sun
      • Oberhauser inserts needles into Bond to torture him.
  • The Name Is Bond, James Bond: Bond says this iconic line to Lucia Sciarra when they're in Rome.
  • Nebulous Evil Organization: SPECTRE, an evil spy organization that apparently had its hands in the criminal plots in Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, and Skyfall, among others.
    Swann: It's known as SPECTRE.
    Q: And do you know who links them all?
    Bond: ...Me.
  • Neck Snap:
    • Mr. Hinx appears to do this at the SPECTRE meeting to an unlucky delegate.
    • Mr. Hinx also appears to suffer this himself, his death being a combination of an anchored rope around his neck and a fall from a train.
  • Never Bring a Knife to a Fist Fight: Not exactly a knife, but a corkscrew. Bond uses one in his fight with Mr. Hinx on the train. It doesn't help him at all.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: The trailers all make it seem that the personal effects box recovered from the ruins of Skyfall Manor is what kickstarts the plot of the movie and that the ring with the SPECTRE logo was found in it. In fact, what puts Bond on the trail of SPECTRE is a video message from the late M, and he is far into his investigation (having already killed Sciarra and taken his ring) by the time Moneypenny gives him the box.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: It's dubious as to whether Mr. White knows that SPECTRE is watching through the camera behind him when he discloses his daughter's location to Bond, but either way, Bond is the one who subsequently puts Madeleine in direct danger by immediately trailing her afterwards, as she brazenly points out to him later.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: When Blofeld pins Bond's arms behind him on the torture chair, it gives Bond the opportunity to take off his watch and arm the explosive alarm which he hands to Madeline for her to toss at Blofeld.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Bond vs. Hinx on the train.
  • No, Mr. Bond, I Expect You to Dine: Oberhauser sends a classic car to pick up Bond and Madeleine, gives them exquisite quarters in his lodgings, and serves them drinks. He's still planning to torture and kill them, but it's a Faux Affably Evil approach to a mind game. Mainly because of his It's Personal relationship with Bond.
  • No-One Could Survive That: Bond could have saved himself some trouble if he hadn't taken this view. First of Hinx after after the car crash, and later of Oberhauser. He refers to the latter as the "recently deceased leader of SPECTRE" when talking to M, after the attack on the Morocco base. Being Blofeld, however, he's very much alive.
    • Bond could have saved himself some trouble with Hinx if he had not assumed this after the car crash.
  • No OSHA Compliance: Shooting a single gas valve causes SPECTRE's entire Morocco facility to explode.
  • Non-Action Big Bad: Oberhauser/Blofeld simply watches James Bond try to save Madeleine in the climax, and he is never seen engaging in combat.
  • Non-Appearing Title: This is the third time in the Craig era (and roughly the 7th time overall—Dr. No, From Russia with Love, and On Her Majesty's Secret Service being instrumental, Octopussy's theme song being "All Time High") that the theme song has not featured the title of the movie.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: The abandoned ruins of the Vauxhall Cross building in the final battle.
  • Obstructive Bureaucrat: Denbigh is attempting to shut down the Double-O section in favour of his own Sinister Surveillance program.
  • Oedipus Complex: Oberhauser murdered his father and then adopted his mother's maiden name.
  • Oh Crap!:
    • Bond when he realizes the church is falling down towards him.
    • Bond during the first SPECTRE meeting, when Oberhauser turns towards him and greets him.
    • M after C reveals he's watching his own agents when C plays a recording of a phone call between Bond and Moneypenny.
    • Mr. Hinx when he realizes he's about to be thrown off a train with a rope wrapped tightly around his neck and a heavy weight at the end of it. He says, "Shit!" before he disappears.
    • Bond when Oberhauser/ Blofeld reveals that he's holding Madeline prisoner somewhere in the rigged Vauxhall Cross building
    • Blofeld himself when he realizes his helicopter is about to crash. Probably the only time in the film when his calm, collected, demeanor slips.
  • The Oner: There are two notable long shots: the one opening the movie following Bond's movements from the Day of the Dead procession up to the rooftop (although this is in fact several shots cleverly edited together), and Lucia Sciarra entering her apartment and walking to her outdoors fountain.
  • Outrun the Fireball: Bond and Madeleine do this in the final battle when trying to escape the explosion of the old MI6 building on boat.
  • Patricide: Oberhauser murdered his father because the latter treated Bond like a son, and took his mother's maiden name Blofeld.
  • Personal Effects Reveal: The reveal about the relationship between Bond and Oberhauser aka Blofeld is foreshadowed by a mysterious photo recovered from the ruins of the Bond family home, Skyfall along with a court order giving a man named "Oberhauser" temporary custody of 12-year-old James.
  • Posthumous Character: Almost everything we know about Mr. White's background and motivations comes after he dies.
  • Precision F-Strike:
    • Mr. Hinx utters his only word of the film, "Shit!" right before his final death.
    • Q does this as he realizes that Bond has stolen the Aston Martin DB10.
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner: Before Bond takes the shot in Mexico City:
    "Bottoms up."
  • Product Placement:
    • As in the previous film, Bond is dressed to the nines in the finest Tom Ford apparel through much of the film.
    • He's also briefly uses a Sony Xperia Z5 smartphone to contact Moneypenny, although the editing and lighting of the scene obscures the phone.
    • Jaguar Land Rover supplies the SPECTRE organization with Land Rover Defenders and top of the line Range Rover SVR SUVs.
  • The Quiet One: Mr. Hinx only says one word in the movie. Lampshaded when Dr. Swann asks the henchmen if any of them can talk when they kidnap her. In fact, his only word in the film is right before he's removed from it entirely.
  • Railing Kill: When Bond's cover is blown in the SPECTRE meeting, he throws a security guard who tries to apprehend him over the balcony to his death.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Bond gets suspended for doing an unauthorized mission in Mexico City.
    • You remember that inquiry about the 00 program in the previous film? Turns out M's speech and Silva's interruption didn't actually derail it. Heck, SPECTRE might even have been behind it in the first place.
    • The bad guys get a vote, too. They can go to town with armored cars just like Bond does. Bond learns this the hard way when he does a fly-past at the kidnappers' motorcade in Austria and finds Mr Hinx's Range Rover is able to No Sell several 9mm rounds that Bond fires at it.
    • As Bond learns the hard way, the Girl of the Week doesn't immediately fall into his arms after being rescued. Nearly killing her by ramming the trunk of the Range Rover made Swann justifiably angry with 007.
    • The car Bond stole from MI6 garage isn't massively locked and loaded with ammunition like a typical Bond car, but of course it isn't. Safety protocol dictates that weapons be disarmed when not in commission.
    • Played for Laughs when Bond finds out Moneypenny has a boyfriend. Other people have lives, too. Even Moneypenny says as much: "It's called a life. You should try it sometime."
  • The Red Baron: The Pale King, enemy of SPECTRE and target for assassination by them. To the audience and Bond, he's better known as Mr. White, the Quantum agent who killed Le Chiffe, and whose real name is never heard to be mentioned by anyone working for SPECTRE.
  • Red Right Hand:
    • Downplayed. The hulking Mr. Hinx has metal fingernails on his thumbs, which assist him in administering violent deaths.
    • Following the destruction of his Moroccan lair, Oberhauser/Blofeld sports a raw version of Donald Pleasance's iconic facial scar.
  • Revisiting the Roots: This film brings back many of the elements that made up a classic Bond film but were not used in the previous Craig films, such as: the gun barrel sequence returning the beginning of the film, M using an office reminiscent of Bernard Lee's, Q providing Bond with gadgets, and SPECTRE making a villainous return with Blofeld himself in charge. Bond even starts quipping again.
  • Right-Hand Cat: There's a white persian mulling about in one of Oberhauser's bases. Appropriate, since he turns out to be Ernst Stavro Blofeld, the Trope Codifier of this trope.
  • Ripped from the Headlines:
    • Mr. White's assassination via radiation poisoning is likely inspired by the assassination of Alexander Litvinenko, which happened just a couple of days before Casino Royale premiered.
    • The main plot of the movie, about SPECTRE installing a powerful global surveillance tool that they wants to use for their own ends, was almost certainly inspired by the NSA revelations spilled by Edward Snowden.
  • Romancing the Widow: Lucia Sciarra is the widow of the man Bond kills in the opening sequence.
  • Sadistic Choice: Blofeld tries to force this on Bond. Using a 3-minute bomb, he gives him the choice of either saving Madeleine and risk dying from the explosion, or saving himself and leaving her to die.
  • Safety in Muggles: Sciarra attempts to elude Bond by walking through the Day of the Dead parade. It works, temporarily. Later, Q escapes capture from some thugs when a bunch of tourists enter the ski lift they are in.
  • Scenery Porn: Standard procedure for a Bond film. Mexico City, Rome, Austria, Morocco, London—all looking spectacular.
  • Self-Parody: The standard Q briefing is rife with this, as Bond is shown a magnificent new car and told about all the extras, only to be then told it's for another agent. He's then given a new watch, which unlike most in the series, actually is primarily just a watch, albeit with a "quite loud" alarm. Subverted when is revealed that the "quite loud alarm" quip was actually a reference to it having a bomb.
  • Sequel Hook: By the end of the movie Blofeld is still alive but imprisoned by MI6, paving the way for his return. On a meta level, the credits say that "James Bond will return" just to reassure the audience that the series has no intention of ending.
  • Series Fauxnale: The movie ends in a way that it simultaneously wraps up Craig's Bond's story, while also having a note of And the Adventure Continues. Craig was contracted to appear in one more film but struck a deal with the studios; of course Bond Will Return, but Craig may or may not be back.
  • Sex for Solace: Defied. When Bond and Madeleine investigate the hidden clue in Mr. White's old honeymoon hotel room, she tells him that she won't fall into his arms just because she learned that her father recently killed himself.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The safehouse has a cover of a shop called Hildebrand. Tanner says he's never heard of it. Unsurprising, as unless you read the Bond short stories by Ian Fleming, it is unlikely you would have heard of "The Hildebrand Rarity", in the collection For Your Eyes Only.
    • That's one Bullitt-looking Bond in that turtleneck (tactleneck?).
    • Denbigh's codename is "C". This was the codename of Sir George Mansfield Smith-Cumming, the original chief of the British Secret Service, along with his successors, and the inspiration for the similarly-named M.
    • Bond turns up to a meeting and sarcastically claims his name is Mickey Mouse.
    • Among the names on the memorial in the old MI6 Headquarters: Emma Pill. Ironically though, in this case, the names on the memorial are actually all crew members from the film (Pill being a location manager). However, the name is similar, and Ralph Fiennes gets an Actor Allusion when British spy M noticeably brandishes an umbrella while in a pinstripe suit.
    • The monstrous giant Mr. Hinx killing a (good looking, Spanish-talking) SPECTRE assassin by ramming his fingers into his eyes calls an infamous TV death scene to mind.
    • Bond shooting at Blofeld, only to discover he's behind bulletproof glass, echoes the opening of the first episode of The Man from U.N.C.L.E..
  • Shown Their Work: A very small example. During the opening scene in Mexico City, a poster in the hotel reads "Dia de Muertos" (literally "Day of Deads"), how the holiday is actually called in Mexico, in contrast with "Dia de los Muertos" (Day of the Dead), how it's commonly called in foreign media.
  • Sinister Surveillance: Denbigh plans to replace the Double-O section with a widespread surveillance program called "Nine Eyes", despite M's objections. It is made even more sinister after the reveal that Denbigh is working for SPECTRE, and all the intel gathered by the program will be immediately passed on to them.
  • Slavery Is a Special Kind of Evil: During the meeting of SPECTRE leaders, the only presentation that the audience gets to hear in full is the progress report by the German representative about the success of their Sex Slave operations and the one-hundred and sixteen thousand women they have placed in this situation.
  • So What Do We Do Now?: Madeline to Bond after they defeat Hinx.
  • Soft Glass: Bond jumps through a window to escape the SPECTRE meeting without even a scratch.
  • Sorting Algorithm of Evil: Mr. White, one of the leaders of the Quantum organisation that gave MI6 so much grief in Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace, seems terrified of SPECTRE more so than even Bond.
  • Spiritual Successor: "Writing's on the Wall" to "Skyfall". Dark, moody, melodramatic ballads that sounds as though they're from the perspective of one of the main characters. To top it off, the former has followed in the latter's footsteps as far as accolades, netting the Golden Globe and the Oscar for Best Original Song.
  • The Spymaster: M as usual and Franz Oberhauser whose true identity is Ernst Stavro Blofeld and whose criminal organization SPECTRE is attempting to get into a position to quietly take over the intelligence services of multiple nations in order to acquire and control the intel that they gather. They intend to do so with an asset that they've cultivated and put into position with a series of false flag terrorist attacks.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: M after the SPECTRE mooks ram his and Bond's car and abduct Bond. An especially good one considering that there's absolutely no way he could have escaped undetected (their backs are turned to him very briefly, and he travels much too far a distance). The sheer impossibility of this is pointed out in CinemaSins takedown of the film.
  • Strapped to an Operating Table: Bond is strapped to a high-tech version (more like a dentist chair) while he is remotely tortured by Oberhauser.
  • Strictly Formula: An accusation leveled against the film by detractors is that it's so much an homage to older films and their formulas that it seems bland. Subverted in that the scenes at the Supervillain Lair and the lair itself exploding aren't the climax. Instead, the film continues to London, where the real finale happens.
  • Supervillain Lair: After three films of either avoiding one (Casino Royale), or having villains use pre-existing locations as bases (Quantum of Solace and Skyfall), a Bond villain lair returns in true form in SPECTRE's Moroccan base. It's a high-tech satellite relay station and server farm that also has an observatory and high-end guest quarters. It's also built inside a crater.
  • That Man Is Dead: Oberhauser still uses his birth name professionally, despite having faked his death many years earlier, but he considers that man to have actually died. He truly identifies as Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
  • Theme Music Power-Up:
    • The James Bond theme plays when Bond shoots down Blofeld's helicopter (from a boat, with a pistol!)
    • It also booms in (the opening notes, at least) during the cold open, precisely at the point Bond regains control of the plummeting helicopter.
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: Dr. Swann is said to be an incredibly skilled doctor/psychologist who graduated from one of the best medical colleges in the world. She doesn't do anything related to that after her intro scene. To be fair though, it's hard to find a use for psychological therapy when you're on the run from armed hitmen.
  • Thriller on the Express: At one point Bond is forced into a violent brawl with Mr. Hinx through the train they're on.
  • Throw-Away Country: Hamburg and Tunis are mentioned as having suffered recent terrorist attacks.
  • Title Drop: "SPECTRE. It's name is SPECTRE."
  • To the Pain: Oberhauser/Blofeld tortures Bond by drilling holes into various parts of his brain while explaining what effect this is having on him throughout. It doesn't actually faze Bond himself that much, because he's, well, James Bond, but it greatly disturbs Madeleine, especially when he threatens to take away Bond's ability to recognize faces.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: The trailers are very open about the reappearance of Mr. White, following his absence from Skyfall, but the film itself actually treats this as a twist. Several mentions are made of "The Pale King", the identity of whom anyone who has seen the trailers can work out immediately, but Bond himself doesn't realize it until meeting the man. On the other hand, any Daniel Craig's Bond fan seeing Jesper Christensen's name in the opening credits would have no trouble working this out for themselves.
  • True Companions: Bond, M, Q, Tanner, and Moneypenny risk their lives to take down C in the end.
  • Universal Driver's License: Within the course of this film, Bond pilots two helicopters, two boats, a plane, and a car.
  • Video Wills: M, who died in the previous film, has left a video recording to be delivered to Bond upon her death. It contains a request to kill an assassin that will provide Bond his first lead to SPECTRE.
  • Wall Bang Her: Bond pushes Lucia Sciarra up against a full-length mirror for a makeout session.
  • Watch the Paint Job: Q notes how the DB5 from Skyfall will take a while to be rebuilt - "I believe I said 'bring it back in one piece', not 'bring back one piece'!" - Foreshadowing how the prototype DB10 which was explicitly not for Bond to drive will find a similar ending...
  • Weaponized Car: Bond's Aston Martin DB10 has a flamethrower mounted at the rear which is used to roast the front of Mr. Hinx's CX75. It also has machine guns built into the back, but Bond only finds out when he needs them that they have not been loaded with ammunition.
  • Wham Line:
    Oberhauser: Franz Oberhauser died twenty years ago, in an avalanche together with his father. The man you're talking to now, the man inside your head... is Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
    Bond: Catchy name.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Lucia Sciarra disappears from the movie following her and Bond's tryst. It's never known if she made contact with Leiter or made it to the embassy safely.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • M gives Bond an earful for going on an unauthorized mission in Mexico City.
    • Madeleine also chews Bond out after he rescues her from Mr. Hinx, claiming that it was him approaching her that lead the SPECTRE agents to her in the first place.
    • Lucia also, pointing out that Bond killing her husband has now made her a target of his associates, and that him killing her would-be assassins has done nothing more than delay the inevitable.
  • Whole Plot Reference:
    • Hilariously enough, this movie has many similarities with Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, to which itself uses many Recycled Script from previous Craig-Bond movies, despite both coming out the same year. The main focus being the titular Nebulous Evil Organization that has surfaced and is behind numerous incidents all over the world that are connected together. The organization is shrouded in so much secrecy that the main protagonist has no choice but to go rogue in order to track them down on their own. Meanwhile, the main protagonist's stunts in previous films are catching up with them and the government demands to shut down the agency that they worked for because they think it is unreliable and outdated, leaving only a few loyal agents to assist the hero off-the-grid. The second act that take place in Austria and Morocco. The villains' motivation is to acquire something that would help expanding their organizations' influence further provided by a goverment official who has ties with them and love to push the hero's Berserk Button at any chance they get, and the climax of both films take place in London, with someone close to the hero got kidnapped by the villains and the hero has to race against time to save them AND stop the villains from escaping, culminating in the main villains got taken into custody, opening up the possibility for them to return in the future. Doesn't help that Lea Seydoux, the Bond girl of this movie, also played a villain in the previous MI movie, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol.
    • SPECTRE infiltrates an intelligence organization to set up a global surveillance system that they can use to take out anyone they want, just like HYDRA in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. M and C both make much the same arguments for and against this system that were made in that film as well. Funnily enough, HYDRA from Marvel Comics was originally based on SPECTRE, as particularly evidenced by the similar logos. This is pointed out by Honest Trailers in its Honest Trailer of the film.
  • Woman in Black: Lucia Sciarra. Appropriate, as she's (ostensibly) in mourning. And Madeline in first scene, representing her initially antagonistic relationship with Bond.
  • Woman in White: Madeline in nearly all her scenes (aside from her first scene and a later one in Oberhauser's lair).
  • The Worf Effect: How Mr. Hinx demonstrates that he is the superior candidate for the mission to assassinate Mr White. The man originally tasked with it is implied to be a good assassin, but is quickly and immediately murdered by Hinx.
  • Would You Like to Hear How They Died?: Oberhauser shows off SPECTRE's surveillance abilities by replaying Mr. White's last moments to Madeleine.
  • You Have 48 Hours: Q gives Bond 48 hours a head start before he can "guarantee" the right functionality of tracking nanobots in Bond's blood.
  • You Have Got to Be Kidding Me!: Bond's response to the DB10 he stole having no ammunition.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Film/Spectre