Tuesday, November 28, 2006

On Being Bond

I don’t feel like talking about comics today, but I do feel like talking about my relationship with James Bond.

Like one of the many Bond Girls, my relationship with James Bond is one-sided and my affection is not reciprocated. I love James but he doesn’t love me. No, it’s not a kiss/hug kind of relationship: I’m not gay and James Bond doesn’t really exist, silly.

Ever since I was a little kid, I always loved James Bond books and movies. I remember before the advent of cable TV staying up late as a kid so I could watch The Spy Who Loved Me on the ABC Sunday Night Movie, which always had a warning: “Parental guidance advised.” And that was the allure. The films portrayed a sophisticated, exotic world full of glamour and danger that seemed so… adult. Bond himself was a fascinating if inappropriate role model for Young Dave – he navigated through a scary grown-up world with utter poise and certainty and the occasional streak of ruthlessness.


The scene that really stuck with me from The Spy Who Loved Me wasn’t the big battle in designer Ken Adam’s huge set or any of Bond’s lopsided fights with the indestructible Jaws or even the Lotus Esprit submarine car. There’s a scene where Bond (Roger Moore) fights a bald henchman on a rooftop that ends with the thug precariously hanging back over the edge of a roof, clutching Bond’s tie to keep from falling. Bond gets the info he needs from the henchman and then casually bats the tie out of his hand, sending the thug to his death. That scene really spoke to me as a kid and really captured the whole spirit of James Bond: when it comes down to it, Bond is a ruthless motherfucker.

Or he should be, anyway.

Thankfully, nearly every James Bond movie – even the worst ones – has at least one scene or moment that captures the true essence of Bond. Okay, none immediately come to mind for Moonraker, but I’m sure there’s at least one redeeming moment…

Wait! I know: In Moonraker it’s the scene where the evil Hugo Drax turns his Dobermans loose on his terrified female assistant, who betrayed him. The dogs chase her through some woods and kill her and eat her (off screen). That’s a creepy scene. It doesn’t feature Bond, mind you, but it’s a very Bondian scene.

But what is Bondian, anyway? Gadgets, quips, tuxedos, dames, martinis? Sure, but the character has a literary pedigree: Ian Fleming’s thirteen James Bond novels. In Fleming’s books, Bond is a more nuanced character, whereas the movies veer more towards broad caricature. The literary James Bond is fleetingly glimpsed in the movies and is hidden completely in some of the Roger Moore films. To me, those moments in the Bond movies that draw from the original source material (even if only in spirit) are Bondian.

I absolutely devoured Ian Fleming’s books when I was a kid. Fleming was up there with Stoker, Moorcock, Tolkien, and Dahl – the writers that really gripped my shit, so to speak. Yes, I said Moorcock. Get over it.

I can imagine that somebody who has just been exposed to the Bond movies would be a bit taken back by the Bond novels, which bear only a superficial resemblance to the films that bear the same names (except the book Thunderball, of course, which was based on the screenplay Mr. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and hews closely to the film).

Fleming’s James Bond is more conflicted and prone to self-doubt than his superhuman cinema counterpart. He’s a Cold War civil servant who has developed expensive tastes and bad habits, a hollow killer who immerses himself in sensual pleasures to distract himself from his inevitable violent fate. He drinks way too much, smokes too much, eats unhealthy gourmet cuisine, and pops the occasional pill to kill the pain or perk himself up. James Bond is not going to grow old, he’s going to die with a 9mm bullet in his lung or a knife between his ribs and he knows it.

Fleming’s Bond stories are more understated and street-level than the films. They’re not exactly crammed with wall-to-wall action. Fleming seemingly takes greater interest in the brand of suit Bond’s wearing and how he likes his eggs than the mechanics of a fight scene. Which is not to say there is no action, it’s just that the gunfights and chases are a natural extension of the stories and don’t occur with the clockwork frequency of the movies. Above all, Fleming’s books are about James Bond, the character.


This brings us to Casino Royale and how much it kicked ass.

Have you seen this movie? I don’t know if I’ve just been starving for a proper Bond film and it has skewed my critical faculties, but holy crap, I loved it. From beginning to end, Casino Royale was Bondian.

Daniel Craig captures the manly essence of a James Bond at the beginning of his career. He’s a callous, over-confident killer with a bit of an attitude who has developed some unhealthy coping skills to deal with the realities of his work. Unlike some previous Bonds, you really feel like this guy could die, that at some point he will die. He’s not ridiculously competent at everything he does, just most things. And he can run hella fast. We’re talking Robert Patrick-fast.

The thing I liked most about Casino Royale was that it treated James Bond as a character. He doesn't just float through the movie, untouchable. Bond has an emotional investment in the events of the movie and has a definite character arc – he has changed from the beginning of the film to the end. He sincerely, deeply falls in love with Vesper (Eva Green) despite the raccoon eye make-up she wears all the time that makes her look like Darryl Hannah in Blade Runner.

______

"...and [Bond] can run hella fast. We're talking Robert Patrick-fast."

______

Anyway, Casino Royale wasn’t just a good James Bond movie, it was a good movie, period.

That’s the thing about movie franchises, isn’t it? You compare them to themselves, not other films. You know how it goes: Star Trek IV was better than Star Trek III, but not as good as Star Trek II. Yes, but how does Star Trek IV compare to other science fiction films? Did you like it better than Aliens? Or 2001: A Space Odyssey?

Bond movies are like that; they are often compared to one another and not to other spy or action movies. Was Die Another Day better than The Bourne Identity? What about Assassins? Did you like it better than Agent Cody Banks?

Casino Royale was a good spy/action/adventure movie that could stand on its own merits. It’s not just “a good James Bond movie.” This isn’t a film that coasts on the fact that as a big franchise picture it has a built-in audience – Casino Royale actually works hard to be entertaining, and that’s why in a few weeks it will be the top-grossing James Bond movie ever. Because it’s Bondian, and it’s a good movie-movie.

So there you go: Daniel Craig is The Balls.


Next, we’ll discuss in excruciating detail the most Bondian sequences or moments in film history.
That’s right, no comics for you!

61 comments:

Brit said...

Where's Fekkesh? Where's Fekkesh???

"P..pyramids! AAAAAaaaaaaaaaghh!!!!!!!!"

Anonymous said...

First, yes, I thought Casino Royale was very good. Daniel Craig kicked ass and I did think of Robert Patrick's Terminator whenever Bond was running in this movie. He outran cars! The parkour opening scene was worth the entire price of admission, too. Lastly, not only did I read a lot of (Michael) Moorcock growing up (and now) but a lot of (Philip K.) Dick as well, and (C.J.) Cherryh, which I think sounds vaguely sexual as well.

Anonymous said...

I loved Moorcock, Dick, and Heinlein - which sort of sounds like "hymen." Well, not really. Forget it.

Chris said...

Yes, Casino Royale kicked much of, as you say, "the ass".

It was Bond Begins, which was needed at this point, and not only did the action scenes seem Bond-worthy, the movie showed -gasp!- Bond as a PERSON, not a cartoon.

Well done.

SQT said...

I am definitely looking forward to more of Daniel Craig as Bond.

And yes, Vesper wore way to much eye make-up.

Anonymous said...

Dave, despite the fact that you rock, Fleming's books were 14 and not 13. 12 novels and 2 short story anthologies, (a typo on your part, you had to have known this) which I, too, would recommend as very solid pulp adventure spy fiction, especially to the curious fans of the film series.

This post rocked too and I feel it's like the (2006) Casino Royale to the list of DLB posts, ie. it reminded me why I started reading this blog.

Anonymous said...

Next, we’ll discuss in excruciating detail the most Bondian sequences or moments in film history.

Are you referring to Bond films, or films in general?

I politely demand that you include the Thunderball pre-titles sequence with the SP.E.C.T.R.E. transvestite agent attending his own funeral and the frickin' jetpack later on. It has nothing to do with Fleming's vision, but damn, that's what Bond, at least Connery Bond, is all about.

Vive le Campbell! Vive le Bond!


And speaking of the most recent film, whom do you (Dave, fellow readers) suppose are the secret organisation behind Le Chiffre and Mr. White? I hope it's SP.E.C.T.R.E.

Anonymous said...

James Bond Week on a Comics Blog?

It's stealthy.

It's ruthless.

Why might Bond Week be...Bondian?

rob! said...

i too thoight Casino Royale was excellent, better than any of the Dalton or Brosnan ones, and yes, even better than Agent Cody Banks.

i grew up with my Dad taking me and my sister to see Bond movies (the Roger Moore ones) and i was surprised how emotionally invested i was in this one being good. i had really missed a Good James Bond Movie and didnt realize how much.

cant wait to see Craig again as Bond. he kicked ass, balls, and some other sensitive body parts.

Anonymous said...

Finally saw Die Another Day on cable the other night, and I can see why they wanted a complete do-over. That was all spectacle and no heart. Brosnan is okay, I guess, but can you imagine him attempting the "I have no more armor" speech from Casino Royale? Sure, he'd be looking into her eyes, but only to catch his reflection and make sure his hair looked alright.

Anonymous said...

The one good moment from Moonraker is this:

Bond and Drax are out hunting birds. A few fly up, Bond turns and fires, all the birds fly away safely. Drax says, "You missed." Then the sniper Drax had planted falls dead out of a tree. Bond says, "Did I?"

Yeah, not the strongest Bond moment ever, but it's not bad, and it's certainly better than the rest of the film.

Anyway, Casino Royale is Bond done right, and it's one of the few films in the series that is indeed a Good Movie. From Russia With Love is another, and I have a personal weakness to Goldeneye.

Annabell Lorenzo said...

I hope this isn't some crappy hype. I've heard nothing but bad news before the movie came out.
Now you all love it.
I Haven't seen it so thank you dave for not including any spoilers.

I will go and see it however I will have trouble cause after reading this article I will be expecting this movie to be really good.

Oh well.

Steve V said...

Where does James Bond Jr relate to all of this?
He did, after all, learn the games from his uncle James.

Anonymous said...

Die Another Day was the ultimate example of what went wrong with the wheezing franchise, Bond is reduced to a male spokesmodel for watches, cars and such.

Bond is now as he should be, darker, harder, stoic, serious. No inane one-liners. Craig even has the "cruel mouth" and the stubborness of the book Bond. His Bond is more nuanced than other Bonds before, especially Brosnan's Ken Doll Bond.

It also helps Eva Green is perhaps one of the best so-called "Bond Girls" yet, an actual character, who ends up baring her heart to bond, instead of a masturbation appliance played by an unconvincing actress.

On another note, For Your Eyes Only has some Bond moments. Maybe nothing spectacular, but the movie toned down things a bit to it's advantage.

Like when Bond goes up to that Prominent Henchman who finds himself trapped in a car hanging precariously off a cliff. Bond lets him know he's there to settle accounts on behalf of two victims, then gives the car a kick to send it plummenting down to go smash.

And to go back to a simpler time, in Dr. No, when Connery-Bond sets up an ambush for a suspected assassin. Man empties his gun into what turns out to be a decoy, only to find Bond sitting in the shadows. "That's a Smith and Wesson. You've had your six." And Bond dusts him, real unapologetically.

Anonymous said...

Likewise on the Moorcock!
Since I have reread most Bond novels in the last week, I wholeheartely agree. A minor point: Bond is not even a Brit, he calls himself a "scottish peasant". Excelsior!

Anonymous said...

Sorry Lads,

I just can not let a Bond back and forth go without including

"You Only Live Twice"

The volcano inflitration scene is shitfire tits.

As a few have said, when the old man takes you and the sibling to a movie and that movie shows you shit that just makes you say holy christmas on a crutch. Yeah. Heh.

I loved the vibe of the new flick.

I thought the story was kind of logically who to the wha?..what to the whoo?

P.S. By the way BRIT(& Dave), Senor Bond does let/throw the Egyptian twist into a bullet in the back from Herr Fat Gut on the inside awning.

Where is Fekkesh indeed? On the business end of Jaws choppers.

P.P.S. The fact that they had Senor Craig in the foreign locales was just the ice on the cake. Seeing 007 and XXX dance/fuck w/ Jaws in the Giza tombs was once again shitfire tits/for the ages

Anonymous said...

Sorry Lads,

I just can not let a Bond back and forth go without including

"You Only Live Twice"

The volcano inflitration scene is shitfire tits.

As a few have said, when the old man takes you and the sibling to a movie and that movie shows you shit that just makes you say holy christmas on a crutch. Yeah. Heh.

I loved the vibe of the new flick.

I thought the story was kind of logically who to the wha?..what to the whoo?

P.S. By the way BRIT(& Dave), Senor Bond does let/throw the Egyptian twist into a bullet in the back from Herr Fat Gut on the inside awning.

Where is Fekkesh indeed? On set in downtown fucking Cairo.

P.P.S. The fact that they had Senor Craig in the foreign locales was just the ice on the cake. Seeing 007 and XXX dance/fuck w/ Jaws in the Giza tombs was once again shitfire tits/for the ages

Anonymous said...

I have no idea what Dallas Senosco just said, but I liked it.

RTO Trainer said...

Well, heck, as Flemming tells us in On Her Majesty's Secret Service, Bond travels to Royable de Eaud every year to visit the grave of Vesper Lynde. You think any movie before now would have included such a thing? Heck it took Dalton/Bond to recall Tracy Draco had ever existed.

I didn't start reading the books until I went to college. In that way the movies were the Bond of my childhood. I loved Q and the gadgets. It's uncommonly cool for me that Bond, in the way I've experienced it, has been maturing along with me.

S Bates said...

First of all, Dave, it sounds like you're saying Casino Royale (the film) is more like the book version of Bond and less like the movie version of Bond. Which, considering I've only see the movies means I should expect a few "differences"?

Secondly, Axel, regarding your comment: A minor point: Bond is not even a Brit, he calls himself a "scottish peasant".

That still makes Bond a Brit. Great Britain is made up of England, Scotland and Wales (I guess the Irish could also call themselves Brits because Ireland is part of the British Isles. But not Great Britain. And not the UK. Unless you're talking about Northern Ireland)

Harvey Jerkwater said...

GoldenEye tried to humanize Bond and make him into an actual character, but it didn't work. The slick style of the movie was so at odds with the few "revealing" scenes that those character moments felt forced. A pity. Bond does indeed need that. There was a scene that kinda works out of context. Imagine Sean Bean here:

"I might as well ask if all those vodka martinis silence the screams of all the men you've killed... or if you've found forgiveness in the arms of all those willing women for the dead ones you failed to protect?"

It ain't Proust, but for a James Bond movie, that's heavy stuff and a bold new direction.

Can't wait to see Casino Royale. Sounds like they got a lot of things right. And no Sheriff J.W. Pepper, either. Sweet.

Chris said...

I'm starting to think that Daniel Craig is the best Bond. Connery was awesome, no doubt, but he was also sort of playing himself, you know? Craig added something.

I think Roger Moore gets the most Bondian moment though. In For Your Eyes Only, when he kicks that car over the cliff that has the assassin in it? Damn, that just seemed like the coldest Bond's ever been in my opinion.

Edward Liu said...

RTO Trainer sez: "Heck it took Dalton/Bond to recall Tracy Draco had ever existed."

Moore visited her gravesite at the very start of For Your Eyes Only. Scuttlebutt has it that the scene was included to provide some degree of continuity because it wasn't certain that Moore would be coming back, so they wanted to include the scene to ease people in to a new actor, but left it in when Moore came back. It's easily my favorite Moore Bond film, mostly for its back-to-basics approach and because Carole Bouquet is the Bond girl. It is nearly criminal how gorgeous that woman is, even if Moore could have been her grandfather.

BTW, when did the Dalton films refer to Tracy? I thought Dalton had a lot of the same qualities as Daniel Craig, but was severely hobbled by incredibly lame scripts.

The Bond films and Conan stories really ought to be models for comics on how to eat your cake and have it too by having continuity across multiple stories that really have very little to do with each other.

Anonymous said...

I think it says something bad about Bond fans - or the vocal minority of them - that the prevalent complaint about Daniel Craig's casting was that he wasn't pretty enough to be Bond, or the close second, that he was blond.

That response was proof enough that the character needed a good, grounded reset, and Casino Royale did just that by kicking every Bond movie made in the past two decades squarely in its face. Craig is absolutely awesome, and for the first time in a long time, I think Bond is badass again.

And I mean, he drives through a building right off the bat. That's part of a recipe for being rad.

Matthew E said...

I wonder if they're going to start remaking the other Bond movies with more faithfulness to the books. That'd be cool. In particular I'm struck by how different the book and movie versions of The Spy Who Loved Me are. I'm not sure it's possible for two things to be more different.

Anonymous said...

Now, I've never been much of a Bond fan. I just never found my way into the movies. But this past weekend, at a friend's behest, I saw Casino Royale. My shit was gripped, as the philosopher said. It was flat out a great film, Bond or otherwise.

No comics for me? Au contraire. I said to my wife afterwards that Casino Royale was like a really great comic book. More Bond, Dave!

Anonymous said...

Dave,

Your comments were spot on. Casino Royale was the best Bond movie ever.

I think this is the Bond that Timothy Dalton was trying to portray, but he was hamstrung by weak scripts. I also think he shot himself in the foot with fans when he first spoke Bond's signature line during the pre-credit sequence in The Living Daylights. He just kind of barked out "Bond...James Bond" in a manner that suggested he was already tired of the role, just three minutes into the film.

Also, the actress portraying Miss Moneypenny during the Dalton-era was awful!!

nightfly said...

I have a warm fuzzy corner of my heart dedicated to Goldfinger, which had the best henchmen ever (Oddjob) and that fantastic strapped to the laser-cutter scene.

"D'ye ekshpect me t'talk?"
"NO, Mr. Bond - I expect you to DIE."


That fleeting "Well, I'm dipped," look on Connery's face says it all, and the almost-panic as he tries to talk his way out of it, knowing that he has absolutely no leverage... Great stuff.

I've read the books, too, and the travesty that was "Live and Let Die" is a shining example of why the Moore movies should all be fired out of a giant slingshot into the heart of the sun. I don't care how good Christopher Walken was as Zorin. (What a waste of an actor. He could have been THE Bond Villian.)

PS - You Only Live Twice is all right, but Bond's Japanese makeover is laughable, as is Donald Pleasance deciding to kill the UNDERLING instead of him when he had the chance. Figures that in the end the cat would be smarter. But yes, great battle at the end. (Even if Goldfinger did it first - and Auric's getaway in that scene is perfect.)

nightfly said...

To Clarify - "the travesty" refers to the Live and Let Die MOVIE. The book was pretty good. In fact it was so good that they stole Leiter's shark bit and stuck it into one of the Dalton films, as I recall.

Anonymous said...

I honestly think Casino Royale would have been the best Bond movie ever if it had ended when the bad guy died. The last half hour was so painfully unnecessary and bland.

RTO Trainer said...

Edward,

In License to Kill, Felix Leiter gets married. His bride throws the boquet to Bond with a quip about him being next. Wonderful pained smile from Dalton. Leiter then explains to his embarassed bride that Bond had been married...once.

I agree with other commenters about Dalton and the scripts. He was supposed to be more clearly an assassin, but also more clearly human and trying to cope with the violence of his life. Trying to make the character more believable and 3 dimensional.

Then they cast Wayne Newton as a villian....

Oi.

Anonymous said...

charlie anders, I think you need that last half hour if you're serious about rebooting the franchise. You need to provide some kind of real context for his misogyny. You need the romancey parts for 'the bitch is dead' to have some real impact, to cement that this is why Bond doesn't get too close to anyone, why he uses people and discards them.

Anonymous said...

"...and [Bond] can run hella fast. We're talking Robert Patrick-fast."

You quote yourself. Now that's cool.

McGone said...

Ironically, there are a lot of supposed "Bond fans" complaining that CASINO ROYALE wasn't Bondian at all. These people miss the gadgets, and the awful names like Dr. Christmas Jones, and the cheek. Screw them. They can rent MOONRAKER and have a good cry.

I admitted in my post on CASINO ROYALE that Craig is so fucking good, I'm starting to develop a boy crush. I may have to write a letter of apology to Mr. Connery telling him he has been usurped.

I haven't had that much fun at a movie in a long time.

Anonymous said...

"GoldenEye tried to humanize Bond and make him into an actual character, but it didn't work."

Goldeneye, and the other Brosnan films, are perfect examples of "illusion of change" storytelling: you pretend like you're going to do something fresh but when it comes time to follow through, you wuss out and retreat to your safety zone. That's why I could never really get into Goldeneye despite its popularity.

I think the thing I most love about the books compared to the movies is how much punishment Bond ends up taking in every book. He gets the ever-loving shit kicked out of him at least once in each story. I think my favorite is in Moonraker, where he barely survives a an avalanche, a horrible car accident, gets smashed over the head like 56 times, and finally gets the soles of his bare feet burned off by steam jets, which results in him leaving a trail of bloody footprints behind him as he races to save the day. You sure as hell never saw Unflappable Movie Bond go through that kind of hell to make things right.

Anyway, looking forward to seeing Casino Royale. Sounds like they're finally not being stupid about the franchise.

Anonymous said...

man, if you want to see Bond get his shit messed up, Casino Royale will make you very happy in between cringes.

Jack Norris said...

Matthew-
The main reason Spy Who Loved Me is so different from the book is that it's contractually impossible to film the book's story. When Ian Fleming sold the rights to the books (except Casino Royale and restrictions on Thunderball as we all know), he specified that they could use the title but that the story was never to be adapted. Not that the filmmakers at the time TSWLM was made wouldn't have changed it anyway...
(Though I like the idea of faithful remakes - especially Blofeld's Garden of Death from You Only Live Twice).

Bully said...

I'm a huge Bond-novel fan and understand the point of why the movies (which i also love) can't be like the books most of the time, but when it was announced that Casino Royale was going to go back to the basics and be more like any of the books than any movie since From Russia with Love was, well, I was skeptical. For me there's three moments in that book that define Fleming's Bond, and I couldn't believe the movie would possibly bother to include them: the martini-naming sequence, the torture sequence, and "The bitch is dead."

And then the movie

includes

all

three.

First movie in years (since Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie) I had to go back and see again immediately after I saw it the first time.

Anonymous said...

Okay Dave, I need to straighten you out. MOONRAKER. Write it off. Pretend it never happened. Never again attempt to put it into an intelligent discussion of James Bond.

I own EVERY James Bond film. I even own Never Say Never Again. I do not however own MOONRAKER.

Crater said...

awww c'mon. MOONRAKER was the perfect pocorn piece of trash movie. It had Roger (I'm only doing this for the sex) Moore, Jaws (and who doesn't love Jaws) and it had explosive decompression in space.

Also if Roger Moore had never done Bond we would never have had Austin Powers.

Hmmm is that a good thing?

But I will miss Q.

Crater said...

Hey I forgot A View To A Kill.

Durran Durran did the theme.

Gotta love that. Bad Eighties band for a bad Eighties music.

Ahhh my teendom remembered.

Anonymous said...

Casino Royale/Daniel Craig. This is what I always hoped James Bond would and could be.

This was the perfect set up to what Sean Connery did as Bond and what Ian Flemming always meant Bond to be.

Loved the movie not only as a Bond movie, and action movie and one with character, but as a really great movie.

Good call, Dave.

Your amigo,

Beau

Anonymous said...

I still say that Roger Moore's best Bond performance was in Cannonball Run.

Anonymous said...

Moonraker had space shuttles ready to go in less than 24 hours. AFAIK, NASA takes several months to prepare each mission.

The device used to mask the space station from radar was monitored by a couple of idiots who were easily overcome by Roger "Hmmm?" Moore and that chick. No armed guards or closed circuit cameras monitored by some guy in the command center. Just a couple of guys in jumpsuits filling out clipboards and fiddling with knobs.

Then there was the astronaut v. astronaut battles with lasers. I remember this scene from the book.

Chilling.

Not to be outdone, Dr. Goodhead and teh Roger race after some probes and use the shuttle's laser to take them out. The shuttle has a laser? And it's designed to take that kind of heat for that amount of time?!

And we all have a good laugh as MI6 brass and the Queen call Bond (using their flat panel HD viewscreen) to congratulate him--only to find him having weightless sex with Goodhead.

Moonraker blows. Roger Moore's legacy indeed!

SQT said...

I couldn't believe the movie would possibly bother to include them: the martini-naming sequence, the torture sequence, and "The bitch is dead."

And then the movie

includes

all

three.


I feel like you nailed the movie in a nutshell right there.

It's so freaking good. I can't wait to see it again.

Anonymous said...

Dude, Moonraker blows.
Even the book it's based on blows.
In the novel they have a Nazi building a super-duper-rocket somewhere near Dover, the reds bring a nuclear warhead, they shoot it in the direction of London and in the end, it explodes in the Northern Sea, killing the Nazis and the Reds.
And, no astrounaut battles.
It's a goddarn rocket, not a spaceship.

Anonymous said...

Axel: The films The Spy who Loved me and Moonraker were the basis for tie in novelizations by Christopher Wood, the films' screenwriter.

Anonymous said...

Also, gentlemen, it's Ian Fleming - with only one m.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of Moorcock, I read (almost) all of the ELRIC novels with greedy abandon as a lad.
When those got turned into GREAT comics by P. Craig Russel and others, I was in heaven.

As for Bond, sadly, I never read any of the novels.

I know...what is WRONG with me?!?

I've seen many of the films (not all) and almost embarrassingly state that since Roger Moore was the Bond I grew up with, he was my favorite for YEARS (until I actually went out and WATCHED some Connery films. Then, he took it).

Haven't seen any of the later films (after Pierce Brosnan's 1st or 2nd go-round). I just got tired of the "too good, can't die, won't even get his hair mussed in a fight" aspect.
But, it sounds like I'll HAVE to go see THIS.

Oh, I DID watch "Chitty-Chitty Bang Bang" with the wife the other night.
THAT was Ian Fleming's too.
(I've owned that, on tape, for years.)

So...uh...does THAT count for anything?

No?

NEGATIVE points AGAINST me?

Oh, come on!

It even has a Fleming-type female character name in there.

The leading lady is named "TRULY SCRUMPTIOUS"!

Still no love?

It's got BENNY HILL in it!

Nothin'?

Dang.

~P~
P-TOR

Anonymous said...

Oh, can I say that my all-time FAVORITE BOND moment wasn't in ANY of the films or books?

It was the episode of THE SIMPSONS where Homer is working for the evil-villain; SCORPIO, and the end scene with the government agents trying to take over the base was HYSTERICAL!

That look of wall-eyed mania on Scorpio's face while he's calmly talking to Homer (and asking him politely, to kill someone on his way out) with flames and explodo's going on all around him.

Man, I loved that.

Sorry.

Back to your serious discussion.

~P~
P-TOR

zailo said...

Well, these posts pretty much clench it for me. I am going to have to go out and see Casino Royale. Up to now my favorite Bond film has been Goldeneye if only because it is all about revenge as opposed to an assignment for Bond.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't persuade my wife to see Casino Royale, which meant I had to wait for a window when I could see it myself.

And the night before I finally went, Dave's post arrived, and my Bond-mania became Bond-rabies.

You actually raised my expectations for the movie--and you were right.

Bond embodies everything I go to the movies for--and THIS is the Bond I've been waiting for all my life.

I second everything Dave said. (Or third, or however many we're up to now.)

Anonymous said...

Not being a Bond fan, I am but a humble observer until Dave returns to other heady subjects, i.e. Boob Wars.

However, Hoosier X, if his roommate had paid the phone bill (or if there was wifi out in the sticks), would argue that Moonraker was officially the worst Bond movie ever (according to his site, Mushtown Media Corp.).

But please, don't scoff at the messenger.

PHSChemGuy said...

Casino Royale absolutely kicked ass...seen it twice in the theater already, and it kicked ass the second time, even...

best

Bond

ever

Anonymous said...

Me like Moonraker!
Lasers are cool!

Anonymous said...

Dave - brilliant post, and you are right, the movie was excellent

Everyone else - loved all the comments, brilliant.

One last thing - I drive past the Aston Martin factory near here in Newport Pagnell ( England), twice a day - priceless

K.Fox, Jr. said...

kick-a man, kick-a. yes, d. craig was the shat, yeah, man, yeah

Unknown said...

知多半島 旅館
カーボンオフセット
コンタクトレンズ
プリンセスルーム
輸入雑貨
アスクル
アクサダイレクト

Unknown said...

不動産
ソニー損保
カード決済
インプラント
ショッピングカート
東京 ホームページ制作
不動産投資
三井ダイレクト
カラーコンタクト
不動産
网络营销
知多半島 温泉

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Unknown said...

This was a great James Bond review. The article was really informative one. I hope I can watch this film soon.