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The James Bond Series


sandman
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I saw the rumours about Elba and it was just fantasy casting, never going to happen. He is 50 now, only 4 years younger than Craig is now. And yes they want a new actor to commit to 10 years because it's a franchise like any other they dont want a new actor every film.

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They've never gone with an A-list actor before, so I suspect this time they'll choose someone who you might have heard of but who isn't an established film star. It'll be that guy from the TV series.

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10 minutes ago, Thor said:

Dan Stevens is still a good shout, I reckon. 

 

I just went on IMDB to see how old he is but accidentally searched for Dan Stephens. Mr Stephens, from the titles of the things he's starred in at least, seems to have had a somewhat different career direction to the Dan Stevens from Downton Abbey and Legion...

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As far as the producers are concerned; the character makes the actor, not the other way around. It’ll never be Cavill, Hardy or Hiddleston and even if he’d been 10 years younger it would never have been Elba (not least because he’s pure cringe).

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Having just watched The Sound of 007 on Prime, the Sam Smith one is still the only one that's just nothing to me. Hearing it in the documentary, I couldn't remember hearing it before. Having just finished the doc, I can't remember a thing about his song. It just goes directly into some memory hole.

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1 hour ago, JohnC said:

Having just watched The Sound of 007 on Prime, the Sam Smith one is still the only one that's just nothing to me. Hearing it in the documentary, I couldn't remember hearing it before. Having just finished the doc, I can't remember a thing about his song. It just goes directly into some memory hole.


it sounds like earth song by Michael jackson 

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5 hours ago, JohnC said:

Having just watched The Sound of 007 on Prime, the Sam Smith one is still the only one that's just nothing to me. Hearing it in the documentary, I couldn't remember hearing it before. Having just finished the doc, I can't remember a thing about his song. It just goes directly into some memory hole.


I worked on that. I thought it was very funny that they all spent so much time talking about the unused Radiohead song (and even played it over the Spectre title sequence) but none of the interviewees even mentioned the actual Sam Smith track. 

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2 hours ago, Marlowe said:

I highly recommend listening to Quentin Tarantino and Roger Avary discuss Moonraker on their Video Archives podcast.

 

Roger's enthusiasm has convinced me to watch it again for the first time in years.

 

Cheers for this! Didn't realise they had a podcast!

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10 hours ago, Waggo said:

The Madonna one was proper shite as well & that was back when Madonna was still half decent.

I don't think they even played a snipped of that. I think Madonna got a brief namecheck from some talking head or other and it was otherwise ignored.

 

But I at least remember the song, unlike Sam Smith.

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10 hours ago, JohnC said:

I don't think they even played a snipped of that. I think Madonna got a brief namecheck from some talking head or other and it was otherwise ignored.

 

But I at least remember the song, unlike Sam Smith.

 

Funny thing is, the Madonna song was the highest Billboard charting Bond song since A View to a Kill (the only James Bond Billboard no 1 song). It got to Number 8, which is the same as Skyfall and significantly higher than the other recent Bond songs which barely scraped into the Billboard chart.

 

Yet it’s never really mentioned now. I personally think it’s a decent song, but it’s been mired by Madonna’s performance in the film. 

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 26/05/2022 at 23:24, Anne Summers said:

Started watching them all through from the beginning now. As I mentioned in the other thread. But I've moved over to this one to post my opinions.

 

Zooming through the Connery ones and OHMSS as I'd watched them before I thought about writing about them on here ...

 

Dr No stands up as a good self contained spy movie still, I think. Good introduction to Bond. Learned that Flemming didn't approve of the choice of Connery to play Bond, which I didn't know before, as I'd always thought he was quite close in character to the literary Bond (my favourite Bond, btw). 

 

From Russia with Love is just pure class. Connery hits his stride and knows what he's doing with the character, rather than just trying things out like he is in Dr No. Great incidental music and very much has the atmosphere of a suave, globe-trotting espionage adventure. 

 

Goldfinger, Thunderball, You Only Live Twice - Nothing all that interesting here, just starting to see some of the tropes (one liners after despatching bad guys, a bit of misogyny here and there) developing. I guess they thought they knew what the audience liked and expected by this point and just tried to give it to them. 

 

On Her Majesty's Secret Service - I really like this one and it's the first one since From Russia that I'd say is an interesting standalone film, where you're not just watching it for Bondisms. Lazenby tries to humanise the character and it's good fun. 

 

Diamonds are Forever - It's starting to get a bit silly now, I guess the film series was getting really popular and they realised they were catering to a mainstream cinema audience. Comedy gadgets, comedy bad guys, awful attempts at cinematic special effects which just look bad because they technology's not really there yet - six years before Star Wars. 

 

Live and Let Die - It was time for someone to take over as Bond, certainly, as Connery was starting to phone it in. Moore is for the most part great, and definitely suited to the mainstream audiences that were starting to turn out for blockbusters in the 70s (Towering Inferno is one year away, and Jaws is two years away). It's starting to become more about the spectacle rather than the story, characters, acting performances, etc. A trend that's still going on today of course. Awesome theme tune but it doesn't really go with the visuals during the opening credits. 

 

 

 

 

 

Amazon have put these back on Prime so I can finish doing this now - or at least get through a few more of them before they take them off again!

 

The Man With The Golden Gun - I actually watched this a few months ago and didn't bother to write about it at the time because I was pretty underwhelmed. Christopher Lee is good but that's about all I remember about it.

 

The Spy Who Loved Me: My all-time favourite Bond theme tune. Moore is fully resigned to the fact he is going to the "Comedy Bond" now. He's got a quip for absolutely everything. One unintentionally funny thing that the Moore films all have is underwhelming action scenes - the music is very dramatic but the action on screen all looks pretty pedestrian, for example Bond swinging across the ceiling on some kind of pulley device to take out a load of enemies in the bad guys secret submarine-stealing ship. And Bond riding in on a very 70s-looking jetski to raid the ocean base right at the end. The karate fight in the dojo in the previous film, too. It all looks so slow and undramatic due to the pedestrian editing. I think this was parodied pretty well in the Austin Powers movies, in scenes like the one where someone is about to get run over by a steam roller and they just stand there screaming "noooo!" instead of getting out of the way, even though you can tell the steam roller is miles away.  

 

 

 

 

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Moonraker: What becomes really obvious when you watch them in order like this is how formulaic they all are. And these Roger Moore ones are the most formulaic of them all. The last one was under water, this one is in space but apart from that they're practically the same film. Fantastic song, once again. Pretty shit movie. At least there's a bit less of the Egyptian builders/ women drivers type of thing. Although the bit where Bond goes through the female CIA agent's room setting off her gadgets one by one is pure Austin Powers. 

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On 28/10/2022 at 01:49, Anne Summers said:

 

Amazon have put these back on Prime so I can finish doing this now - or at least get through a few more of them before they take them off again!

 

The Man With The Golden Gun - I actually watched this a few months ago and didn't bother to write about it at the time because I was pretty underwhelmed. Christopher Lee is good but that's about all I remember about it.

 

The Spy Who Loved Me: My all-time favourite Bond theme tune. Moore is fully resigned to the fact he is going to the "Comedy Bond" now. He's got a quip for absolutely everything. One unintentionally funny thing that the Moore films all have is underwhelming action scenes - the music is very dramatic but the action on screen all looks pretty pedestrian, for example Bond swinging across the ceiling on some kind of pulley device to take out a load of enemies in the bad guys secret submarine-stealing ship. And Bond riding in on a very 70s-looking jetski to raid the ocean base right at the end. The karate fight in the dojo in the previous film, too. It all looks so slow and undramatic due to the pedestrian editing. I think this was parodied pretty well in the Austin Powers movies, in scenes like the one where someone is about to get run over by a steam roller and they just stand there screaming "noooo!" instead of getting out of the way, even though you can tell the steam roller is miles away.  

 

 

 

 

 

Compare that to the crunch of the fight scenes in OHMSS. Night and day.

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On 30/10/2022 at 09:22, Hanzo the Razor said:

 

Compare that to the crunch of the fight scenes in OHMSS. Night and day.


What never helped old Roger in the fight scenes is that he kept letting out a comedy “ooof !” when he got punched in the gut. The other Bonds are much more stoic about being beaten up.

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On 29/10/2022 at 19:05, Anne Summers said:

Moonraker: What becomes really obvious when you watch them in order like this is how formulaic they all are. And these Roger Moore ones are the most formulaic of them all. The last one was under water, this one is in space but apart from that they're practically the same film. Fantastic song, once again. Pretty shit movie. At least there's a bit less of the Egyptian builders/ women drivers type of thing. Although the bit where Bond goes through the female CIA agent's room setting off her gadgets one by one is pure Austin Powers. 

 

It picks up again in For Your Eyes Only where it goes a bit more serious, but yeah, so many of the Bond movies are essentially remakes of Goldfinger but set underwater, in space, in Silicon Valley etc. Pierce Brosnan’s films also fell into the same trap.

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I rewatched Die Another Day last night, 20 years has done nothing for it. There's one part where Brosnan runs towards camera with his arms high up that's funny and also in the sword fight (which was better and longer than I remember) at the end he dives off steps on to the concrete into a front roll and I couldn't help thinking how do you do that really without hurting your self. He does it like it's nothing. 

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I don’t think Die Another Day is actually a good film, but I do think it’s secretly Brosnan’s second best. It’s a super camp modern day Moonraker which at least has some naff kitsch value as a relic of the early naughties, unlike Tomorrow Never Dies and The World Is Not Enough which are just turgid. 
 

TND in particular I always want to like more than I actually do, but next to Goldeneye it’s painful. How do you put Michelle Yeoh in a film with zero decent action?

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For Your Eyes Only - it's the 80s now, for sure - synth pop instead of jazz for the incidental music. Shoulder pads, turbo- chargers and, erm, Maggie and Dennis. This was actually the first Bond film I ever saw, on TV, probably towards the end of the 80s. I remember thinking the scene with the Thatchers was pretty normal. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Edit: Quickly revisiting this post to add the two I didn't bother to comment on at the time, mainly because they were shit. 

 

Octopussy: James Bond is now able to expertly pilot an experimental stunt plane , and dresses as a clown. Those are the only memorable bits.

 

A View To A Kill. Great baddies in Grace Jones and Christopher Walken but otherwise unmemorable. Didn't realise before how downhill the series goes at the end of Moore's run.

 

Now I've re-watched them in order it's given me a new perspective on the series. I always considered Roger Moore to be "my Bond" because it was his films I grew up watching when they were premiered on ITV in the 80s, and then were constantly on rotation at Christmas. They didn't seem to show the Connery ones half as often - I guess because they were seen as a bit old hat at the time, whereas the Moore films were recent-ish movies by comparison. Moore certainly had his moments, the arched eyebrows and his delivery of one-liners are both character defining. But he's well past his prime by the start of the 80s and probably carried on for a few films more than he should have. 

 

 

 

The Living Daylights - Indiana Bond and the Raiders of the Lost Ark. The films have transitioned fully into 80s style action blockbusters now. The fights, effects and action scenes are way better than they were a couple of movies back. I guess this is a trend that's still going strong today,another 20 years and another 10 films down the road. First time I've watched one of the Dalton films since probably their TV premieres on ITV back in the day. He's pretty good, after Roger Moore!

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