Friday, November 9, 2012

Bond At 50: My Memories and Disappointment of 50 Years Of James Bond Movies

2012 celebrates the 50th anniversary of James Bond movies with the release of Skyfall.  I am looking forward to watching this movie with all the die hard fans the Friday it is released in the US on November 9th. Which got me thinking about all the James Bond films and how amazing that this franchise has been around for 50 years.  23 films and 6 actors in the long 50 year history have been giving Bond fans tons of good memories, excitement, and of course eye rolling disappointment in that time. But for me it has always been a good time full of excitement where you can lose yourself in the film and pretend to be one of the six actors being Bond saving the day and getting the hottest girl in that particular adventure.

Skyfall’s Bérénice Marlohe

I’ve been a fan of James bond since the early 80’s.  I’m not sure which one was the first Bond movie I watched, Dr No or From Russia With Love possibly, but I do remember going to the cinemas and watching the remake of Thunderball the non-canon Never Say Never Again with my father.   But the true Bond I did see in the theaters was Roger Moore’s swan song A View to a Kill with Christopher Walken and sporting a killer theme song by Duran Duran.  Those are some of my earlier memories of James Bond.  Watching them on TV edited with commercials and the like.  Thankfully my parents bought them on VHS and were able to watch them and enjoy them as they were meant to be.

The Best There Is 
To me while watching the Bond movies for oh, maybe more than a quarter of the 50 years of its existence I’ve been very fond of the Sean Connery James Bond films.  Most everyone likes Sean Connery as James Bond and every actor who takes on the roll is compared to him.  Whether that is fair or not it is what it is. Sean Connery is the measuring stick and to me he is the ultimate James Bond and my all-time favorite.  Even though I wasn’t born when he was in his prime but watching his films are such a delight and he has that certain something.  Sean Connery had a certain panache and man of action about him.  Plus his movies were so well written with just the right amount of comedy and they were action packed and hardly over the top.

There are not that many of the 23 James Bond movies that I do not like. In fact there are two that really come to mind. Those two movies are Moonraker and License to Kill. I really do not like those two.  For one Moonraker tries to capitalize on the Star Wars phenomenon and fails miserably.  Come on James Bond in space and using laser guns.  I know James Bond movies are far fetched and do the unbelievable but come on.  Plus Jaws falling in love with the geek girl on the space station and forgetting to kill James Bond.  Yeah I can see that.  Now License to Kill has Wayne Newton in it.  Yeah Wayne Newton and a tractor trailer truck doing an unusual maneuver like flip thing that is just well come on man stupid.  Plus the story wasn’t all that good.  License to Kill was a very disappointing story for Timothy Dalton who was halfway decent as James Bond.

The Bond Now 
To be quite honest, like Doctor Who, I enjoy all the actors who have played James Bond.  But I do prefer some to others.  Not too keen on Roger Moore but do love some of his movies.  Like Pierce Brosnan but prefer Daniel Craig.  But all in all the Bond films and the 50 years they’ve been around wasn’t about the actor but the story and wonderful memories they have given us. Come on you know the memories the wonderful cars and girls that have been in the film and the really cool gadgets that Bond uses.  We all wish we could use the gadgets and drive the cars.  But there are tons of great and memorable scenes in those films that would make this article many pages long to list here.  But I will talk about my favorite.

He Has The Golden Touch
My favorite scene is in Goldfinger.  It’s a little scene but it makes me laugh every time.  It’s when Goldfinger is playing gin, or should I say cheating, and Bond finds out and goes up to the hotel room and makes him lose.  James Bond makes Goldfinger lose his money big time.  Then Bond gets the girl.  True his actions cost Jill Masterson her life, in fact she gets a golden death, but I truly like that scene it’s truly a classic.

So there we have a few of my James Bond memories and dislikes from the past 50 years of movies.  I could go on and on but then we don’t have that much time in the day.  I love James Bonds movies and could talk about them all day.  I am happy to be celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the movies and will be doing so by seeing Skyfall.  Skyfall should be giving all us diehard fans some new memories to add to the ones we have.   So I toast you Mr. Bond with my martini shaken but not stirred on a wonderful 50 years of movies and here is to the next 50.

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