The World Is Not Enough is still invading theatres, but as with every time the latest incarnation of Ian Fleming`s nearly half-century-old character splashes the silver screen, the immortal 007 leaves a bit to be desired.
This is not my knock against Pierce Brosnan, Michael Apted, or anyone at EON Productions, but the truth is, the world needs the real James Bond…the Bond of the 60’s, who had a cigarette in his mouth in every other scene, a bed filled with bodacious babes, and menacing villains over his shoulder at every turn…true space-age gadgetry, the amazing laser of Goldfinger and the mini-chopper of You Only Live Twice.
Today, Bond is still suave, but he isn`t as cool. Now, he simply is what James Bond is supposed to be…a dude in a tuxedo, the guy with an old Walther PPK, the man who drinks vodka martinis shaken not stirred, and is always trying if not succeeding to bed one of many beautiful women.
Yeah, so the old James Bond was the same way, but now it kind of seems that every new Bond movie is a two-hour-plus commercial for BMW, Smirnoff, Bollinger, Hewlett Packard, and many others. In the 60’s, EON was paying those types of companies to use their stuff in their movies. Okay, so, dear reader, you are waiting for the name of Sean Connery to come up. Well, that is the last time it will in my review! Bond doesn`t need to be played by a specific actor.
I think Brosnan is a pretty poor 007 (Dalton`s my man!) but even Brosnan can pull off the bit. He can do the 60’s stuff with the gadgets, like GoldenEye, and he can do more down to earth Bond ala O.H.M.S.S. and For Your Eyes Only as he did for Tomorrow Never Dies. The simple facts remain, though, Fleming’s style and storylines, which are all but drained are severely lacking today.
Yes, EON has possible Fleming rights they haven`t used, like Moonraker, Casino Royale, You Only Live Twice action and sections and ideas from The Man with The Golden Gun. They have used the titles but not all the book for those four mentioned, except for certain characters and a few minor spots. Plus, EON has the rights to Colonel Sun, and with proper writing, can even recycle some of their old material (Dare I say another YOLT remake?) and make it fresh once again!
Does the world need two James Bonds, the old one some of our parents know, and the one that I know? Yes. There is a lot of value in the old 60’s, 70’s and 80’s flicks (minus A View to a Kill) and they can be a better experience than $9.50 at the local Megaplex. Are the fans to blame? No. EON is doing what works, and that`s business. We go as fans; we shell out money, almost to help EON ensure that in 23 months Bond will happily return. In the meantime, we can guess at his next adventure…Shatterhand with Anthony Hopkins, Property of a Lady with Sharon Stone, anyone? I am happy that Bond supply and demand is here, and we Bondians are the ones benefiting from it!