Critics have given the new James Bond film an enthusiastic welcome, with one saluting it as “pure action mayhem”.
Spectre, The Guardian’s Peter Bradshaw continued in his five-star review, is “terrifically exciting, spectacular [and] uproariously entertaining”.
The Times said Sam Mendes’ film was “achingly cool”, while The Independent said it was “every bit the equal of its predecessor”, 2012 release Skyfall.
Critics were shown Spectre on Wednesday ahead of its release next week.
The film sees Daniel Craig return as British spy James Bond, aka 007, in a globe-trotting blockbuster named after a sinister criminal syndicate.
Two-time Oscar winner Christoph Waltz, French actress Lea Seydoux and Italy’s Monica Bellucci also appear in the 24th official entry in the long-running series.
According to the Daily Mirror, Spectre is “an adventure right up there with the superspy’s best” featuring “moments of jaw-dropping stuntwork”.
The Sun’s reviewer concurred, saying the film contains “all the classic elements fans expect”, including a “jaw-dropping opening sequence”.
Variety also singled out this “expensively ludicrous opening sequence, set in Mexico City on the Day of the Dead,” saying it “ranks among the great 007 intros”.
Other industry papers were less effusive, though, with the Hollywood Reportersaying it “ultimately feels like a lesser film than Skyfall, falling back on cliche and convention.”
Screen International, meanwhile, said the film “falls back on the formula to deliver a slightly flat, old-fashioned 007 by the numbers”.