Here’s every story detail to be gleaned from the song titles on No Time To Die‘s soundtrack. Debuting in 2005 with Casino Royale, Daniel Craig has redefined the tone and commercial relevance of the James Bond franchise in the modern era. Playing Britain’s iconic secret agent for a fifth time, Craig will finally hang up his Walther PPK with the release of No Time To Die… whenever that might be. Originally planned to release in April 2020, the twenty-fifth James Bond adventure is one of many blockbusters currently on hold due to the pandemic, and is now slated for April 2021.
Through a pair of action-packed trailers, much has already been revealed about 007’s upcoming return. Bond is retired when No Time To Die begins, living peacefully with Madeleine Swann after their initial meeting in 2015’s Spectre. Their happiness is upturned by a violent attack, a mysterious secret, and the arrival of Rami Malek’s Safin, a former SPECTRE assassin with a flair for the dramatic. Bond soon finds himself back in the MI6 fold, working alongside their new 00 agent, Nomi. In their attempt to eliminate the Safin threat, MI6 are forced to rely on the expertise of their star prisoner – one Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
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With many questions still unanswered about how Daniel Craig’s tenure will come to an end, the soundtrack’s titles offer a few salient clues, as well as strengthening some existing fan theories. The full soundtrack reads as follows:
Message From An Old Friend
Someone Was Here
Not What I Expected
What Have You Done?
Shouldn’t We Get To Know Each Other First
Back To MI6
Good To Have You Back
Lovely To See You Again
I’ll Be Right Back
Opening The Doors
No Time To Die (Billie Eilish)
No Time To Die’s Soundtrack Reveals The Film’s Structure
Combining the No Time To Die soundtrack titles with footage already revealed in trailers, an approximate structure for most of the film emerges. After the traditional “Gun Barrel” opening, No Time To Die begins with “Matera,” named after the Italian city Bond and Swann are seen rampaging through in their classic Aston Martin. “Message From An Old Friend” likely denotes Felix Leiter making contact with Bond and asking for a favor, setting up the later events in Cuba. “Square Escape” would be the car chase that culminates with Bond jumping off a bridge, while “Someone Was Here” might signal the arrival of Safin, presenting his broken mask to a terrified Swann, and triggering her departure from Italy.
“Shouldn’t We Get To Know Each Other First” will likely play after Bond flies to Cuba, meets with Felix and Paloma, and inadvertently bumps into MI6’s Nomi, leading the former 007 “Back To MI6” where James is told it’s “Good To Have You Back” by his old friends. “Lovely To See You Again” sounds like something Blofeld would say, and this is perhaps where Bond is reunited with his old SPECTRE nemesis, as MI6 seek to exploit the villain’s knowledge against their new enemy. Elements of the “Norway Chase” have been shown in trailers and TV spots, involving Range Rovers and a Land Rover Defender, while “Gearing Up” should herald the start of the final act – Bond’s final showdown with Safin.
Does “Home” Reveal Madeleine Swann’s Past?
Somewhere in the middle of No Time To Die‘s soundtrack sits the curiously vague “Home.” Bond’s Scottish home was revealed (and subsequently destroyed) in Skyfall, and while revisiting the hero’s childhood would be poignant for Daniel Craig’s final chapter, it’s tricky to see where a trip down memory lane would slot into No Time To Die‘s busy schedule. “Home” could hold a metaphorical meaning instead, referring to the idea of Bond’s return to the warm embrace of MI6. The veteran spy spent 5 years enjoying a normal life with Madeleine Swann but, inevitably, found his way back to the world of espionage and danger. “Home” might allude to Bond’s inability to ever truly escape the spy lifestyle.
Instead of Bond, the “Home” track might relate to Madeleine Swann. No Time To Die‘s second trailer sees Léa Seydoux confirm that Safin wants “her.” Swann and Safin clearly share a dark history, with Malek’s villain left burned by the past, and at some point during Bond’s final mission, Safin may take Madeleine hostage, bringing her “home,” in his mind at least. With Safin taking Madeleine back to where she supposedly belongs, No Time To Die could set the scene for Bond to storm the villain’s hideout like a British one-man army and save his one true love. In this scenario, “I’ll Be Right Back” might accompany Bond as he reassures a rescued Madeleine before leaving for a final Safin showdown.
What Is The Poison Garden?
The most intriguing title on No Time To Die‘s soundtrack comes in the form of “Poison Garden.” Despite sounding like something from The Cure’s 1980s heyday, the Poison Garden could describe Safin’s uniquely decorated HQ, which the trailer showed to be full of attendants cultivating natural arrangements. The venomous name could also connect to Safin’s grand plan that, according to Nomi, could cost millions of lives. The one-two musical hit of “Poison Garden” and “The Factory” might tease Safin producing some kind of lethal toxin to unleash upon the world. A poison attack would suit Safin’s style too – the villain tells Bond that he seeks to make the world a better place by killing in a “cleaner” way than 007 is accustomed to.
“Poison Garden” will ring some decades-old bells for fans of Ian Fleming’s original James Bond novels. In 1964’s You Only Live Twice, Blofeld adopts Japanese culture and resides in a castle surrounded by the ominously-named Garden of Death – an expanse of land packed with lethal, poisonous plants and deadly wildlife. Bond infiltrates and barely survives the Garden of Death, doing battle with an armor-clad Blofeld in the book’s climactic scene, but this sequence was omitted from the 1967 Sean Connery film of the same name. Many James Bond fans consider the Garden of Death to be one Fleming’s greatest un-filmed 007 moments, but has the concept finally been adapted for No Time To Die, albeit with Safin taking over Blofeld’s role as chief gardener? There’s certainly a Japanese influence in Safin’s decor, so No Time To Die‘s “Poison Garden” could, after decades of waiting, represent a live-action Garden of Death.
“Final Ascent” Might Tease Bond’s Death
Something about “Final Ascent” conjures a sense of foreboding ahead of No Time To Die‘s ending. While the title could simply mean “final” in terms of the movie’s closing action sequence – Bond climbing some lofty structure to battle Safin, perhaps – the phrase takes on a whole new light in the context of Daniel Craig’s departure and the recurring rumors that No Time To Die will kill off Bond for the very first time. Due to the self-contained nature of Craig’s era, James Bond has a unique opportunity to kill off its title character before rebooting with a brand new actor. This shocking move would provide a clean break from one 007 to the next, while bringing the “aging spy drawn back into the field” story to its only logical conclusion.
In literal terms, “Final Ascent” could describe Bond sacrificing his life to prevent the release of some biological weapon that Safin plans to release upon the world. Not only would this explain the “Poison Garden” song title and Safin’s desire to “play God,” but a noble sacrifice would provide Daniel Craig’s arc with a more meaningful conclusion than simply resuming retirement or returning to MI6 full-time. No Time To Die‘s trailer offers a brief shot of Safin’s island base, and the faint outline of what appears to be a missile silo can be spotted. Is this where Bond’s ascent will take place? “Final Ascent” works on a figurative level too. Time and time again, Bond has risen to the challenge of protecting Queen and country, but as No Time To Die draws to an end, 007 may ascend to greatness one final time, never to come back down.
More: Killing Off Daniel Craig’s 007 Would Make It Easier To Reboot James Bond
Key Release Dates
- No Time to Die/James Bond 25 (2021)Release date: Apr 02, 2021
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