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Author Topic: stupid James Bond movie plot devices  (Read 1200 times)
creagmor
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« on: January 04, 2018, 11:56:34 am »

If this is too far off track feel free to delete it.
In Goldfinger, when Bond was shooting at what turned out to be a mirror; IMHO either it would have shattered or he would have realized what it was and stopped before crashing into it.
In Moonraker, when Bond left the woman behind while he searched the warehouse, why did she only have a knife rather than a gun?
In For You Eyes Only, Bond could have avoided all the drama if he had just activated the self destruct device on the decoder. Of course that would have made for a very short movie.
In The Spy Who Loved Me, why did Jaws take the two agents way out into  the desert and try to drop a rock on them rather than merely drive a few miles into the wilderness and shoot them. Speaking of which, in retrospect, all of the complicated attempts to do away with him, and every other cinematic hero, seem more than a little silly. But then l suppose that the evil masterminds never went to the cinama.
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Banfili
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« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2018, 01:46:51 pm »

No, they probably just never read the books! Grin
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« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2018, 01:58:27 pm »

Most probably in a minority here, But I have never liked them. Watched a few when I was young........ Meh, alot of fuss over piss poor plot lines.

So is George Lazenby (an Aussie) still playing the part?  Grin
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Will Howard
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« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2018, 04:32:04 pm »

Most probably in a minority here, But I have never liked them. Watched a few when I was young........ Meh, alot of fuss over piss poor plot lines.

So is George Lazenby (an Aussie) still playing the part?  Grin

I think that he only made one Bond movie.  When he lived in Santa Monica, CA, he lived next door to my aunt & uncle. I met him at a garage sale!  (That's a "jumble sale" to the Brits).
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Hurricane Annie
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« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2018, 09:24:22 pm »



 I enjoy a good Bond movie. It's light hearted escapism  with a dash of suspense thrown in.  The Pierce Bosnian era   I  can't bring myself to watch. He was  wrong   for the part.  I thought Timothy Dalton a very good Bond, maybe a  touch too moody and real for some.  That  script wasn't the best though.

 It could be time for an ethnic minority  Bond.  He would though have to be from the British  Colonial Empire . Which would mean African, Indian, West Indian, Middle Eastern descent for international audience appeal.  A NZ Maori or indigenous Australian  Bond  might require subtitles  for our  accents and dialect.

 Hemi bro  choice as



 
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Cora Courcelle
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« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2018, 08:23:07 pm »

Nothing wrong with a Bond movie and their popularity is, I think, testament to the fact that we all like a bit of escapism.  As for dodgy plot lines, well quite honestly how many films can survive being dissected to check that their logic is flawless? If you enjoy watching it doesn't really matter; if it's not your cup of tea there are plenty of others to watch instead.
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Prof Marvel
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« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2018, 04:59:47 am »

Greetings My Dear Fellow Steamians -

Firstly, I am an unabashed, unappologetic James Bond/Ian Fleming/Spy Movie UltraFan.
Also a fan of the "Smiley" series, and several other examples of the genre'
Also a fan of "I SPy" and "Man from Uncle"....


regarding the plot devices.... ummm .... yeah.
Rather like the old stupid horror movies  - if Grandma had a shotgun (and knew how to use it), the movies would be over inside of five minutes.

As far as spy movies in general go -
I met and chatted with several real life Spooks in my one former job at redacted.

Real spies are not handsome, rugged, martial artists, etc...  they are the "little grey people" that blend in perfectly anywhere.
They are so plain you would not look at them twice. Plain, plump, ordinary, non-descript....  Ask an eye-witness who stared at such a person
for many minutes and they wold describe the Spook as --- "I dunno... average"

real spy stuff is very boring, because it is really all mind-f games, trying to "turn"  someone from the other side,
and persuade them to take all the risks and bring the intel to you.   The job requires the ability to chat people up and
gain their trust. They need quick wits, multiple languages, ability to lie convincingly anywhere/anytime, and actually believe the lie,
and a "certain moral flexibility". The spy needs to "not care" about anybody else. ANYBODY.
Every now and then a real spy has to instantly and quietly kill somebody, then quietly disappear. Or trn over data that gets that somebody killed.
and not care.


The "Tinker, Tailor" series was very realistic.... and very very slow...
"Smiley's People" was very realistic.... and very very slow...

The Smiley books however, are mind-blowingly complex with twists that make you wonder what just happened.

Now Regarding Bond flics:
Ian Fleming wrote about his life experiences as a Britsh Naval Commander in small commando units, and men he knew from WWII
and after - from ~ 1946 - ~1955. All were ex-military,  some had become smugglers or mercs . things were different then.

It was a crazy, tough, time in UK and Europe, the Med, and Russia. Don't even start me on Inida, Asia, and China, or Latin and South America.
Outside of the US and UK were Hundreds of Thousands if not Millions of Displaced Persons (ie refugees),  incredible shortages of food &  medicine,
and, well, everything.  Smugglers were welcomed by those with money in many sectors. A lot like Rum Runners during the American Prohibition era.
Take a long hard look at the movie "The Third Man".
 
Fleming's  books, whilst based on his experiences,  were designed to titillate and provide exciting diversion.
The Bond movies were the same. Show peoplesome  exciting action (like they will never experience)  in exciting places ( that they would never see)
add a hero and a "righteous cause".  Bingo, you have a blockbuster. Later the Broccoli  Brothers wold make each succeeding movie
bigger and louder with more explosions and more women and more nudity. Blockbuster.

But they little or nothing to do with Fleming's books.

[ BTW, like many (if not most) fiction writers, Ian Fleming knew almost nothing about weapons, and repeatedly made numerous mistakes. ]

In my opinion, the movie that best matched Fleming's books were "From Russia with Love" (Sean Connery) and "Casino Royale" (Daniel Craig) - except for destroying Venice....

Personally, I really prefer the Daniel Craig movies, with the exception of "Spectre". But that's just Mrs Marvel & Me ...

I particularly enjoy watching mortals outrun a missle or an explosion wavefront....

yhs
prof ( self proclaimed spook expert) marvel
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Sorontar
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« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2018, 03:33:21 am »

I agree with Prof Marvel. Fleming's experience in military intelligence and information handling was rather rebellious, not doing things to the society norm. He wrote the books with a particular audience in mind. He did not always give Bond a reason for his actions, just a purpose or aim which they tried to achieve. Again, those purposes were often tasked without explanation. Bond was the weapon wielded by the state. How he was wielded was up to Bond.

I was surprised that various physical characteristics of Bond never really were used in the movies, e.g. his facial scar, cruel mouth. Likewise, his Bentley wasn't shown.

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Athanor
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« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2018, 06:50:45 am »

The thing about James Bond, of course, is that he's a mythological rather than a human character. In the first Ian Fleming novel, "Casino Royale", published in 1953, he was a Royal Navy Reserve Commander who served in WWII and was thus, perhaps, in his early thirties. In the latest film starring Daniel Craig, "Spectre" released in 2015, he seems to be about the same age, when in "Real Life" he should be well into his 90's.

In this he's in the same mythological category as "William", in Richmal Crompton's "Just William" series of children's books; the books were written over the period 1921 to 1970, but William remains eleven years old throughout. Both James Bond and William are Archetypes, Bond in the tradition of the Hero with a Thousand Faces, to use Joseph Campbell's terminology, and William is the Eternal Child. Thus, mythological rather than strictly human.

Athanor.
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Rockula
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« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2018, 01:28:51 pm »

I was an enormous Bond fan when I was young. Before I was old enough to go to the cinema to see the movies I read the books. I became obsessed with the gadgets and devices. I got all the toys. I collected magazines, comics and cut out the newspaper strips. All before I'd seen anything more than the odd 'trailer' shown on TV announcing the cinema releases. I also bought all the soundtrack albums. The music is the absolute best thing about the movies.

In Summer 1973, just after Roger Moore had taken on the title role, my local cinema had a 'season' of the old Bond movies and I saw the first 7 films in the space of just two weeks. In fact, I saw them at least twice each. I loved them despite them having little or nothing to do with the plots from the books.

Later that Summer, whilst on a family holiday, we went to the cinema in Great Yarmouth and saw 'Live And Let Die'. I also liked that but it was the start of the end for me. I'd turned 14 and developed other interests (mostly music related). With each subsequent release they became more slapstick and more like violent 'Carry On' films. The last one I actually went to see in the cinema was 'Moonraker' in 1979. James Bond in space with laser guns was just a step too far for me. Roger Moore bore no resemblance to the sardonic, hard-nosed killer in Fleming's books or the character portrayed by Sean Connery (or even George Lazenby who should have done more).

I've since caught up with all the movies on TV or cable and have enjoyed some of them, but mostly found them tedious retreads and recycled ideas from previous films. Timothy Dalton's two films were better but his tenure was too short. And Pierce Brosnan's invisible car was just bloody ridiculous. Frankly, my favourite was 'Never Say Never Again' the unofficial remake of 'Thunderball', and only 'cause it had Connery back despite being far too old.

The Daniel Craig re-boot was a step in the right direction but still hasn't recaptured my enthusiasm from my youth. And trying to address his sexism and apparent misogyny became a bit tedious. The character is a thug and always has been. A thug with a badge. It's like trying to turn 'Judge Dredd' into a socialist. Or pretending 'Batman' isn't psychotic. 

I suppose, like 'Doctor Who', people generally favour the Bond they grew up with. But 'Doctor Who' is Science Fiction and you expect ridiculous plot devices and otherwise unbelievable gadgets.

To sum up, the worst thing ever in Bond was that invisible car, followed by laser guns or the submarine car. Or the seemingly indestructible 'Jaws' character and his love interest. Or the fact that Stromberg in 'The Spy Who Loved Me' was basically just 'Goldfinger' at sea stealing the plot from 'You Only Live Twice' (I call that one 'Fishfinger'). Or Roger Moore getting in fights then straightening his tie without a scratch on him. Or maybe it was Madonna's theme song for 'Die Another Day'.

That's it, the worst thing about James Bond is Madonna's theme song for 'Die Another Day'.  Wink
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« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2018, 04:20:50 pm »

I'm afraid I cast these movies in the same light as all the other flogged to death yawnfests.

A few from recent memory.......

Die Hard

Hellraiser

Fast and Furious

Star Wars

Hobbits

Freddy

Jason

Alien

Saw

All variations on the same theme aimed at box office cashing in.

Pussy Galore, c'mon for F^&$ sake!
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Melrose
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« Reply #11 on: March 12, 2018, 08:22:17 am »

I was a fan back when we couldn't wait for the fourth movie to be released. Then Roger Moore turned the series very silly. Poor old Lazenby came at the wrong time, Connery being a tough act to follow, but the movie still worked for me, largely thanks to Telly Savalas and Diana Rigg, and the big event of Bond marrying briefly. Dalton was good, The Brosnan movies were at least better than Moore. Craig has dignified the series.
My interest flagged when, after "Thunderball", the movies discarded the novel plots. I looked forward to "You Only Live Twice" because I liked Fleming's story. What did we get? Rockets in volcanoes instead of a "death garden".  Satirists rightly mock the theft of two nuclear warheads for a few million pounds ransom!
I enjoy the entertainment of the later generation Bonds. But ... a SECRET agent he isn't! Not with a trail of destruction not seen since the buffalo herds were decimated. Not when every villain gets a line in which he says something to the effect that Bond's turned up. Not when he forgets to use an alias. The name's Bond. Those are the consistent plot failures.
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Fairley B. Strange
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« Reply #12 on: March 12, 2018, 10:54:21 am »

The problem for the films is that Fleming's Bond was never a classic 'action-hero'.
He was never a spy, he was that creation of WW2 SOE the operative - not an agent deep in cover to garner secrets, not an agent-handler like Smiley, not an idealistic turncoat/mole like Philby et al, not a defector like Petrovski, but as earlier noted an uncultured thug who is very good at the 2 skills of an operative - being able to kill efficiently, and being ableto survive and endure.
 Daniel Craig is the closest to the mould. Sean Connery could have matched him, but the movies weren't gritty and dark enough then, so we got ConneryBond trapped in the laser-rig "to die" and escaping with a gadget whereas CraigBond gets tied to a bottomless chair and gets a testicular walloping as per the book. He endures and doesn't break (the mark of WW2 SOE 'heroism' - surviving the Gestapo in silence long enough for the rest of the Network to fold up and get away) until he is rescued by others (see Nancy Wake etc) because this was the reality of WW2 France that Fleming saw - nobody escaped a Gestapo jail from inside with nifty Q gadgets, your only hopes were either a Maquis raid or a Mosquito airstrike, or if neither occurred, to die honourably under torture before you broke and betrayed your comrades.
"You only live twice" has BookBond surviving through the pipes of heat cold friction and drowning etc - an inanimate version of a Gestapo interrogation - hot irons, icebaths, waterboarding. Unfortunately this endurance task wouldn't translate onto the screen, it would just look like another version of DieHard etc crawling through the air-conditioning and sneaking past the fanblades. The difference again between an action-hero and an SOE-hero - outwitting vs enduring.

The other part of Fleming's 'thug' character was BookBond's failed attempts at sophistication - the wine years he orders are always poor vintages - to differentiate the working-class killer from the pre-war upper-class chaps who were 'real' spies, who spoke fluent Oxbridge-classical French as well as knowing the right vintages and having the right tailor (e.g. when Vesper gives CraigBond a 'proper' suit for the poker game).
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« Reply #13 on: March 12, 2018, 11:44:52 am »

About the film "From Russia with Love".

In Russia joke that the film has a cropped end. When James and Tatiana are sailing in the boat, at the very end. Should sound the Morse code and "go" with the subtitle "the Operation implementation is successful, go to work, Katya Ivanova"
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Fairley B. Strange
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« Reply #14 on: March 12, 2018, 01:10:11 pm »

About the film "From Russia with Love".

In Russia joke that the film has a cropped end. When James and Tatiana are sailing in the boat, at the very end. Should sound the Morse code and "go" with the subtitle "the Operation implementation is successful, go to work, Katya Ivanova"

Agreed, it should have been a 2-parter.
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