Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
Response to Peary’s Review:
Peary writes that in “Roger Moore’s last portrayal of James Bond” he “looks trimmer and more energetic than in some of the previous efforts”, “despite what reviewers automatically reported.” While Peary admits he wishes “Bond had a few more of his famous gadgets on hand,” he asserts that the “action scenes are exciting and some of the stunt work is spectacular” (there are nifty scenes high up on both the Eiffel Tower and the Golden Gate Bridge). He points out that “Walken’s the first Bond villain who is not so much an evil person as a crazed neurotic” (ummm, he’s a genetically engineered sociopath…) which “makes him more memorable than some of the recent Bond foes.” However, “viewers will be more interested in [Walken’s] lover and righthand woman, Mayday, played by Grace Jones, whose exotic features and lightning-quick karate maneuvers make her an intimidating presence.” Peary concludes his review by noting that while this “picture lacks the flamboyance of other Bond films, and has a terrible slapstick chase sequence in San Francisco (with stupid cops rather than Walken’s henchmen),” it’s “overall a fast-paced, fairly enjoyable, and… worthy entry in the series.” I would agree, though being a “worthy entry in the series” doesn’t make it must-see — and only Bond fanatics are required to check it out.
Note: As fans of the franchise are undoubtedly aware, ten additional Bond flicks (with one more in production) have been released since the publication of Guide for the Film Fanatic, featuring three new actors. Determining which of these might be must-see viewing is a task for another website! One more Bond review from GFTFF — of Casino Royale (1967) — will be forthcoming.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- Christopher Walken as Max Zorin
- Fine location shooting
No; you can skip this one unless you’re an ardent fan of the series.