|Author & Creator of James Bond: IAN FLEMING|
|Producers: (l) HARRY SALTZMAN & (r) "CUBBY" BROCCOLI|
With an estimated budget of $9 million, THUNDERBALL came back with a strong $141 million. It, too, won an Academy Award: John Stears- Best Effects, Special Visual Effects.
|Donald Pleasence as Blofeld|
|MAUD ADAMS is OCTOPUSSY|
I will now pass the baton over to my "counterpart" JOHNNY CHAZZ for his take on the subject...
JOHNNY CHAZZ: In response to this week's topic, I will offer my insight into the James Bond movies over the years. I cannot possibly reply with the length of writing offered by JER this week, but I will address some key points of relevance with respect to the topic.
|Was CONNERY the best BOND?|
As for Sean Connery, he was certainly the Bond that everyone since has tried to live up to - and perhaps someone did. That issue remains debatable.
Pierce Brosnan as Bond was a nightmare. Bad years, bad movies, horrific scripts and lousy casting. Case closed!
The sound scores are also an issue of ongoing concern. Soundtracks for Bond films are generally worth listening to when they are instrumental only (“Goldfinger”, “Casino Royale” and “Dr. No” offer some entertaining non-vocal trifes). However, on the flip side, Tom Jones gave us a tune that was reckless to say the least in "Thunderball" and even Madonna’s efforts were abysmal later on (“Die Another Day”). I loathe at the thought of being subjected to the hard and rapturous scuff that is sung in the current "Skyfall" movie by Adele.
Roger Moore, as JER mentioned, offered that witty and polished Non-Scottish flair - one that was British: clever and very, very UK. This worked - and in all actuality, it is not surprising why most countries outside the USA preferred Roger Moore as the "true" Bond.
|SEAN CONNERY stands next to the iconic Aston Martin|
British actor Daniel Craig’s “Skyfall” is generating close to $1 billion worldwide and some are claiming it is the best Bond movie to ever hit the screen in the past 50 years. Perhaps it is - but there is a segment that just does not care. I fall in that group.
The truth is, everyone likes what is new and hip and this film might rank in the top 3 or top 5, but I highly doubt that when you look at films such as “From Russia With Love,” “Dr. No,” “Goldfinger”, your opinion might be compromised.
|DANIEL CRAIG...not hip enough???|
So here is the "Counterpoint". I am not into Bond movies - and never really was. The films are no longer "hip" and they can never be retro since Daniel Craig is not an old-school type and 'you just can't go home' as they say. Will I go see “Skyfall”? Absolutely not. Why? I would rather take a walk; grab a Rueben at the deli and Skype a friend. I simply have better ways to spend my time and my $10.
It sounds harsh, but there it is so, so much more in the world of film to examine that it is mind-boggling that we even think about meddling with movies such as the Bond movies - and they seem to never, never end.
JER: Harsh, indeed! No one, including myself, is trying to put the Bond films on a pedestal higher than well- deserved films that are related to both “art” and true cinema. With all due respects to my “Counterpoint” partner…I feel that there is an ignorance on your end, JC, for not really grabbing (or even trying to grab) the real essence of what the films have portrayed and continue to do so over the last 50 years.
|ROGER MOORE= COOL!|
We have talked about how films that do well in the box- office do not define a film’s greatness in the past... I am not implying that by including the numbers at the end of each film’s segment. What I was trying to illustrate was the continued success the entire franchise has accomplished and the strong legs it has created to continue on with more films. So, if there is a 'segment' that doesn’t care, your number is outweighed by, thank God, people who do want to see an action film with interesting characters, villains and beautiful women… and I am proud to say I am one of them in those numbers! Should I dare say that SKYFALL is considered the best of the Bond films within the last 50 years? What would be so wrong as to say “yes”? All I can say is: don’t knock it if you haven’t seen it!
JOHNNY C brought up a good point about the soundtracks and the distinctive songs that have been a part of pop culture since 1962’s Monty Norman/ John Barry’s “James Bond Theme”. We at CINEMA: COUNTERPOINT dedicated a blog page to that very topic… if interested in reading what we had to say about it, please visit us at the following link: http://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=298232811241447037#editor/target=post;postID=8417228204175375841
Everyone is entitled to their opinions and that is what I feel makes CINEMA: COUNTERPOINT work! JC and I have two different opinions at times and we agree completely in others… we have found the right balance that makes this page work the way that it does. We are not obligated to lie or falsify our thoughts just to jump on the band wagon or by getting into the flavor of the month. More than anything, I believe that both JC and I spoke on behalf of two opposing sides that do, in fact, exist out there in the real world...those who care and those that don't...