I loved it. It wasn't as good as Casino Royale but it was a good thematic growth from it. However, this film curiously felt like part one of two with the Quantum group brought up at the end and Bond being told he would be needed by M.
First off, the best part of the film was the interrogation with Mr. White. White was amazing and creepy in the scene. And then when Mitchell turned out to be one of White's men... wow!
The next twenty minutes were probably the weakest aspect of the film as we are given a large amount of chase sequences that aren't all that well direct. However, Forester learns as the film goes on. I saw some reviews that the film did not show how Bond felt after Vesper's death. Really? That man had only one feeling after it: rage. He was always borderline but Vesper's death threw him over the edge. His armor is back up and the only emotion he is willing to show is intense anger.
That said, they could've cut out a few action sequences and given us some more Bond scenes where he is discussing things with M. Because when we do get those scenes they're spectacular. When Bond finds Fields M utters one of the two best lines in the film, "You show them your charm, Bond, and then this is what happens to them."
Domenic Greene was a much better villain that Le Chiffre. His large eyes were eerie as all hell and that nasal voice reminded me of Ben's from LOST which is never a bad thing. It is also Greene who utters the other great line of the film after he hears the gunshot: "Sounds like you lost another one." Bond's reaction is the turning point for him in the film. He would rather die with the girl (whose name just escaped me) than extract vengeance on Greene.
Also in that scene we see 007 almost kill the girl and himself so they don't have to be burned alive. I thought that was a rather novel and ballsy notion.
The main problem I had with the story comes in at the end with Vesper's boyfriend who is apparently working for Quantum. It's all rather unclear and rushed here. They could've very easily ironed that out and I'm unsure why they didn't.
That said, once he gets out (and declines to kill the boyfriend) and talks to M the movie once again reasserts itself. The last image of the necklace is a powerful one and a good one to end the movie on.
In the end I'd have liked a little more Bond discussions and a few less action sequences but the movie was a great one and I'll be very happy to own it on DVD. One thing this movie assures us is that Daniel Craig IS James Bond.